VIA attend Equitable Marketing Event


Photo of Equitable Marketing panelists, including Sean Ryan, Liz Kahn, Samantha Burfiend, Ray Zylinski, David Wantuck and his interpreter.

This Tuesday, VIA: Visually Impaired Advancement’s education and development coordinator, Ray Zylinski, was a panelist for AAF Buffalo and Leadership Buffalo’s Equitable Marketing: Crafting Inclusive Communications for People with Disabilities. The event was moderated by Leadership Buffalo’s Sean Ryan and AAF Buffalo’s Samantha Burfiend and hosted two other panelists, People Inc.’s Liz Kahn, Vice President, Marketing and Communications, and Deaf Access Services’s David Wantuck, Community Engagement Specialist. The event also had tips and tricks for inclusivity. Read AAF Buffalo’s Equitable Marketing handout below. 

Equitable Marketing

All audiences benefit from inclusive marketing, and approximately one billion people worldwide have some form of impairment! 

Accessibility is a phrase that is becoming increasingly used in the creative sector. This is mainly due to brands worldwide realizing that their existing advertisements need to be more inclusive. The goal of accessibility is to provide an experience that meets the needs of everyone in your audience, including people with impairments. 

Here are some tips and tricks to create inclusivity in Buffalo’s advertisement industry!

  1. Do not make assumptions

Not all individuals who have impairments consider themselves to be disabled. Don’t marginalize access information. For example, elderly people with various impairments related to aging would never think to look at a page labeled “disability.”

  1. Understand experiences: 

Dexterity: what kind of movement must an individual perform to interact with the site or content?

Vision: What shapes, colors, text, and graphics must an individual understand to consume my content?

Hearing: What sounds are required to be heard for an individual to consume my content?

Thinking: How much time must an individual spend with my content to truly interpret and understand it?

  1. Ask 
  • Consult with actual people who are disabled. This is the key to getting it right and building audiences. 
  • Ask for feedback, then act on it. 
  • Allow users to request multiple formats without making it sound like a burden. For example, say, “please ask us for this information in alternative formats” rather than “this information is available in alternative formats upon request.”
  • Create an opportunity for people who are disabled to advocate for themselves.

Accessible Content Tools

Who you should know

In the city of good neighbors, we have many organizations and companies leading the way; here are a few to know.

Local Diversity & Accessibility Leaders 

Buffalo Companies Making Waves

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