Black women may be starting businesses at rates faster than other groups, but they still face major hurdles that are particular to them. An online group called Black Girls Allowed is trying to give Black female entrepreneurs a leg up when it comes to marketing and attracting investors.
Black Girls Allowed, founded by Leigh “Dangerous Lee” Langston, is a digital self-promotion platform and news blog for Black women small business owners, job seekers and entrepreneurs. The focus of the site is to expose Black women-owned businesses and content and share employment opportunities available to Black women job seekers.
There is also a component for users to earn digital money. “We are known for our informative and engaging quality content. Each time you share an article or a page from our website, you earn block chain rewards,” says Langston.
“Block chain rewards are digital money (crypto currency) that can be used to shop at your favorite stores online and can be transferred to physical cash. It’s the future of banking on the internet,” explains Langston.
She adds, “Black Girls Allowed was founded because there is a lack of support and opportunities for Black women-owned small businesses. Our main purpose is to provide a platform that puts Black women small business owners and their often overlooked but innovative products/services in the spotlight so that they have a chance to reach new customers.”
The site is expanding the services it offers for businesses to promote. “We will soon be offering a premium promotion package that includes a featured Q&A or op-ed piece pinned on the front page of our blog for seven days; sponsorship highlighting your business site-wide in headers, footers, and sidebars for seven days; digital marketing consulting; a two-page interactive social media/website report; and permanent listing in our business directory,” says Langston.
According to Langston, the top obstacles Black women entrepreneurs face are “a lack of funding, resources, and support but, of course, racism is also an issue.”
But she adds, “Quite frankly, the issues will vary from person to person because many people start businesses without even the slightest idea of what they are doing or how to do it effectively; these businesses are often started without any initial budget.”
Looking forward, Langston has some goals for the site. “The goal and mission are to always help Black women business owners, especially those making less than $25,000 per year, reach a wider customer base and increase their digital footprint,” she shares. “We also have special content features planned for Black Business Month in August and Buy From A Black Woman Awareness Month in November.”