Black professionals exist in virtually every industry… but are we easily found? (And do we want to be?) Considering the year that it is, I find it quite interesting that African American service providers are so elusive. There are numerous points of view on that, and in my view, each one is valid.
Some Black professionals don’t want to be found because they believe they’ll encounter blatant discrimination (read: “exclusion”) at best, and unconscious bias at worst. So they prefer to run their services in the background, choosing not to reveal what they look like until years after they’ve found success. Or possibly never.
Other African American providers do want to be found. But other than listing themselves in relevant business directories, they’re either unsure how to come up on the first page of Google, they don’t have the budget to hire marketing experts, or they aren’t able to both run their businesses and spend the time and energy required to get themselves there (and stay there).
Some providers are already being found, and are being harassed by other ethnicities for choosing to state what is typically already obvious: that they are Black CPAs, Black nurses, Black reiki practitioners, Black therapists… etc.
And there are other cases.
Personally, I have no problem establishing myself as a Black natural healer, spiritual healer, coach, and hypnotherapist, because I know that people who look like me are seeking providers who look like them.
Potential Clients are Actively Seeking Black Professionals
It’s difficult enough to find a provider you trust when looking for someone to use across the long-term. When you’re talking about intimate topics, like personal health challenges, goals, and setbacks, having someone we’re comfortable with is even more important.
Statistics have of course shown that we’re more prone to trust those who look most similar to us–not surprisingly. So there’s that aspect. But also, the cultural similarities–even down to the “feel” of the way someone interacts with us–are so important when discussing sensitive topics.
And so? I put myself out there.
And while I strongly encourage other Black service providers to consider doing the same… I understand if you choose not to.
Just know that your ideal clients are out here, seeking Black professionals specifically.
How will our clients ever find us if we don’t intentionally tell them we exist?