L. Michelle Smith

Racheal Dolezal’s New Controversy: Headlining a Natural Hair Show

By Linda Jones, Daily Beast Rachael Dolezal, the white woman caught masquerading as a black woman who ignited a national debate about race, has kept a relatively low profile since her fall last year. But this weekend she will headline the Naturally Isis Braid-On, Economic Liberty March and Rally in Dallas, Texas. Dolezal was invited by Isis Brantley, a celebrity stylist, natural hair activist, and owner of the…

‘Hamilton’s’ Miranda, Music and Mobile Equals Business Marketing Magic)

(Lin-Manuel Miranda. Image: Flickr/Steve Jurvetso) Marketers can take a cue from Broadway in time for a new mass market The year was 2009. As the story goes, the White House invited a 30-year-old Broadway actor to perform lines from his current production, but this request was a little different than usual. According to NPR, the invitation also gave Lin-Manuel Miranda the option of performing anything else he might want in “the American tradition.”…

5 Keys to Thriving (not just surviving) in Strategic Communications for Journalists Wondering How to Get the Best PR Gigs

Returning to the National Association of Black Journalists Convention this year was exciting because for the first time since joining a student chapter at the age of 18, I was invited to sit on a panel to speak.  When the organizer and I spoke, we agreed that this wouldn’t be the same PR panel that happens each year–the dialogue that talks about transitioning from journalism to PR with a…

7 Keys to Creativity: Unlock Your Genius

(Image: iStock/PeopleImages) Even the most creativity-averse people can tap into their creative genius It’s easy to get stuck in a rut with cookie cutter marketing strategies. How do you tap into the creative genius inside? Do you ever wonder if you even have a creative genius inside? I believe that while many creative geniuses are born, others can be made with deliberate effort. According to Psychology Today, there really…

5 Tried-and-True Ways to Build Great Business Relationships

(Image: iStock/mapodile) Building business relationships that will propel your career does not come naturally to most. Face it: superficial networking leaves some professionals wondering what could be a better use of their time. What is required in building great business relationships is having great people skills. Before you say to yourself, “I have that,” are you wondering what to do with all the business cards you’ve collected? Does LinkedIn still have…

5 Keys to Power Rapport Building for Networking

Networking is all the rage, but if you’re introverted, the idea of meeting someone cold is not appealing. So how do you optimize a brief meeting with a prospect, an industry colleague, or potential employer? In these popular speed-networking events, 5 minutes may be all the face time you get to establish a rapport — which, let’s face it, is the very beginnings of a relationship. However, it is the very foundation…

“Un-networking” for Those Who Hate the Thought of the Other Word

Not long ago, I received a call from the chief of staff (CoS) of an officer at my company, inviting me to speak to her mentoring circle about networking. Now if you are like me, I shun the idea of classic networking. I believe that I have something in my DNA that is just simply diametrically opposed to the idea. I just wasn’t built for it. I’m certain…

What Marketers Can Learn from The Carters
They are dropping entire albums with a single post to Instagram on a random Saturday afternoon. Everyone in RocNation shares about it on their handles, while most other social posts are organic from frenzied fans who are “getting their complete life.” Is new music Tuesday still a thing? Perhaps it is not if you are the parents of Blue and the twins. Beyoncé & Jay-Z are also great…
Social Media: A Digital Portal for Access, an Opportunity and a Voice
Published on October 18, 2016 on LinkedIn On Oct 6, 2016, I spoke to students, faculty and staff from a variety of universities and colleges at the 6th Annual Howard University Social Media Conference.  The topic was how social media has provided access and opportunity to marginalized communities.  I share the original script of that keynote below, and I'd love to hear about your experiences.  The keynote was…
5 Keys to Building Your Own Board of Directors
Published on March 28, 2017 on LinkedIn It’s hard to know much about how I came to thrive at the intersection of business, culture and technology without knowing a bit about my story. It is ultimately an empty narrative without a cast of individuals who have and continue to help set my course. I’m talking about my very own board of directors. You should have one too. If…

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