Last year, Digital Brand Architects took a group of Black creators under its wing for an eight-week mentorship program. In 2022, the talent management firm owned by UTA is picking up where it left off: It has announced its latest class of mentees, which includes 14 up-and-coming Black creators.
DBA’s mentorship initiative resembles other similar programs that have supported unheralded digital creators. The selected mentees are getting hands-on training that will help them develop their personal brands while also educating them on the ins and outs of the online video profession. The topics covered include “content/analytics, building community, platform diversification, rates/negotiations, NFTs/IPs, and more,” according to the DBA website.
For its first mentorship class, DBA worked with Ernest “EJ” James, the founder of the Noire Management agency. James has since joined DBA as the agency’s SVP of Special Projects, and he is now hoping to follow up on last year’s successes. The DBA website includes testimonials from previous mentees; one of them, wealth and travel influencer Cinneah El-Amin, said her experience with DBA unlocked $10,000 in brand deals as well as media coverage and press visits.
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“DBA’S Mentorship Program was created in 2021 to provide knowledge and tangible skill sets to Black micro-influencers in an effort to assist them in growing their online businesses to propel their digital careers,” James said in a statement provided to Tubefilter. “This year’s amazing group of mentees represents a unique mix of creatives across multiple industries including food, wellness, home, lifestyle, fashion, and beauty. Their voices and content represent the continued impact Black creatives have on global culture and DBA is excited to provide them with our knowledge and resources as we continue our overall mission to level the playing field for all creatives to ensure an equitable and kind creative economy.”
As James says, the mentees come from “multiple industries,” and that’s by design. The program is not only promoting literal diversity but also diversity of content. If you click through the channels of the selected creators, you’ll find many different types of content on display:
- Breanna Brock / Plant Based Bre
- Kris Lambert / The Kris Life
- Marisa Moore
- Zuleyma Benitez / Zuleyma 2.0
- Adesijibomi Owoseni / Almighty Nigerian
- Abiola Bishop / The Rich Aunt
- Armiel Chandler
- Brenna Austin / Brenna Anastasia
- Pierrah Hilaire
- Folahan Amudipe / Folahontas
- Aissatou Balde / Tales and Turbans
- Janne and Niqui Bishop / fashncurious
- Joy Ofodu
DBA’s 2022 Mentorship Program kicked off virtually on April 11, and it is expected to run through May 31. The mentees, most of whom have five-digit followings on their primary social media accounts, are grouped together based on their content categories and will be encouraged to collaborate with one another. DBA made it clear that participating creators are not guaranteed to earn management deals at the end of the program, though the firm did note that “we are always looking for dynamic, creative talent to join our roster.”