Welcome to the creative corner of BlogHer. A series of interviews highlighting our highly creative and inspiring publisher and content creator partners across the SHE Media Collective.
In 2020, 20 major advertisers have signed up to spend between 2% and 5% of their annual media budget on black-owned media. Since then, several initiatives have been launched in an effort to give more attention to and reward long-standing black publishers and content creators. The recent partnership between the SHE Media Collective’s Significant market and Group Black is a pioneering initiative to lead the investment push in black-owned media.
In an ongoing celebration of Black History Month, we spotlight Black publishers and creators who use their voice to tell meaningful and authentic stories. These publishers are top-notch content creators who have carved a niche and left their mark in the publishing industry and in their various niches ranging from entertainment to food to sustainability. Their platforms are groundbreaking, and their success is a testament to their dedication, unique perspectives, and courage.
I’m Tomi Obebe, a full-time content creator based in Charlotte, NC. I have a background in corporate digital marketing and an MBA from Clemson University which has helped me combine my passion for business with my personal style. Like my website BonTomiCha grew up, I continue to recognize the disproportionate number of black female bloggers and advocate for inclusion in the media. One of my goals is to be an inspiration to women of color wherever it’s entirely possible to blog and be successful. I love sharing my experiences with fashion and skincare and sharing stories about building houses with my husband, Will. My work with social media and influencer marketing has been featured in LA Times, Today, Business Insider, Yahoo News, HuffPost, and more. I am also the recipient of the 2019 InfluenceHer of the Year award.
I have been a full-time blogger since 2014 after quitting my job. IceCreamConvos is an entertainment site. I cover entertainment news with a human touch and with a fresh, fun, and friendly perspective. My guiding philosophy is to treat every story and every person I write about with the same courtesy and empathy with which I would like to be treated. Many people forget the humanity of celebrities. They may be better known or have access to more things, but they’re still human and a lot of people forget that. There are many challenges to be a publisher, however, IceCreamConvos has grown to six figures per year and in 2020 my husband quit his job and started working with me on IceCreamConvos.
Hello, I’m Jacqueline – the wife, wife and mom of the Jacqueline Stevens community on Instagram and the Jacqueline StevensBlog. You will find me using these outlets as a form of therapy. In 2016, my battles with anxiety and depression hit an all-time high; yet I was afraid to seek help because of the stigma associated with mental health. Thanks to my husband, I found a culturally competent therapist, and in doing so, he saved my life – mentally, physically, and emotionally! I am now a mental health advocate. I encourage anyone with a mental illness to seek help. My goal is that by sharing my story on various creative platforms, I can help de-stigmatize mental healthinspire others to seek their own healing and encourage women to be their most authentic selves.
I founded grittyvibes in 2017 because I didn’t feel represented in the mainstream media. When I couldn’t get an internship in my field outside of university, I thought I would create my own experience by becoming the change I want to see. I pride myself on prioritizing emerging black creatives, over established celebrities. I want people to know that what I do is really authentic. I’ve interviewed hundreds of artists, but what I love most are the friendships I’ve made and the careers I’ve seen take off early on.
I’m Nikki, also known as Deal Finding Diva. I’m a Philadelphia-based content creator and mom. I am a member of the Association of Black Journalists of Philadelphia and have a degree in Communications in Theater from Temple University. I started dealfindingdiva in 2014 to show family and friends how to save money. In 2015, I created the Deal Finding Diva YouTube channel. I did it while working full time. In 2020, when the pandemic hit, I quit working to be a stay-at-home mom and homeschool my daughter. I used that time to focus on my platforms and within two months I started earning income from my creative projects. I auditioned to voice an audiobook and it led to three contracts. The success of my audiobook exposed me to a wider audience who grew my Youtube channel. I create content to show my followers and my daughter that no matter the circumstances, you can successfully earn the lifestyle you’ve always wanted.
fried honey started on Instagram when I started posting food I cook for my family. It grew incredibly fast and completely unexpectedly, and the requests for recipes became overwhelming. I’m a nature helper, so I learned to write recipes and the food blog was born. Now, a few years later, providing “what’s for dinner tonight?” inspiration and writing recipes has become my full-time job! I’ve never seen myself more of a content creator and there were of course some growing pains. This all looks a lot easier on the outside, but it’s been the most rewarding job I’ve ever had., especially in my particular niche. I’m a self-taught cook who learned most of what I know from watching Food Network. Now, I pass my knowledge on to others, and in a way that deliberately encourages people to respect each individual’s personal relationship with food, starting with making room for the picky kids in their lives.
I am a fitness enthusiast, foodie and traveler. My website Foodie life concerns health and well-being and diversity in well-being. I started The Fit Foodie Life because I saw a need for people in communities of color to see people who looked like them leading by example when it came to wellness. I have a Masters in Exercise Physiology, taught dance for seven years, was a dancer for 20 years and am also a former competitive bodybuilder. I want to show people that a healthy lifestyle is sustainable and fun. There is a lack of education in black communities about health and wellness, and young people have health problems preventable by their lifestyle. If I can get one person to change their lifestyle, that’s an accomplishment for me.
In 2015, after being stopped numerous times by other women asking about my makeup and skincare routines, I decided it was time to create my own platform. AishaBeau originally a beauty blog, but over the years it has morphed into a digital destination covering personal care as a whole. From beauty to lifestyle to personal development, each article emphasizes the importance of internal and external well-being. The guideline of my content is self-love. Unearth, deepen and keep room for all that brings us joy and fulfillment. I’m not asking my audience to use self-care as a way to change, rather I agree that it’s about finding your way back to the root, the core of who you are.
Mercedes Diane Griffin Forbes – The CEO speaks
As Chief Freedom Officer (CFO) of The CEO speaks, my message is to live a life fueled by passion, lead by example, and empower those around me to do the same by speaking my truth. At DG Speaks, my team and I spotlight women and people of color who provide innovative and unique ways to impact society. We also focus on providing stories that provide insight from various viewpoints. We look at things through the female gaze, through the prism of the voiceless and from the point of view of the acolytes.
Jacqueline Lynch – Xoxojackie
Xoxojackie is a space to embrace my creativity and show the little moments that bring me joy. Xoxojackie features home improvements, DIY decorating projects, my adventures keeping over 50 thriving plants in my little apartment. Whether it’s my latest imperfect DIY artwork or a propagated plant – I like to share the things that bring me joy and hope to inspire others to find their joy.