At any point in our lives, any one of us could face a disability – temporary or permanent; hidden or visible – that can change how we interact with the world.
Improving your marketing and communications materials – online and offline – can help make a difference for people with disabilities, and keep you in touch with this growing market.
According to the World Bank in 2019, one billion people or 15% of in the world’s population experience some form of disability. Interaction with this audience may vary, but it is an important part of customer service and marketing activities particularly as Ontario’s population ages.
Below are a few ways to help you practice Accessible Marketing.
Improve Product Design:
- Keep different types of disabilities in mind when creating or modifying your product and services. You can stand out by addressing what your competitors overlook.
Develop Accessible Content
- Use techniques and tools that match your audience with disabilities such as headers, color contrast, alt text (written copy) for images, and easy to follow structure that allow screen readers to interact with online content.
Improve Website Accessibility
- Review and try to meet the internationally accepted standard WCAG 2.0 for web accessibility. As this audience grows and your small business grows, it will become more relevant though it only currently applies to a private or non-profit organization with 50+ employees; and public sector organizations.
Actively Celebrate Inclusion:
- Do something to recognize the International Day of Acceptance, every January 20th, a day dedicated to social acceptance of disability. Attend and participate in events and projects that promote inclusion.
Consumers with disabilities can have the same preferences, habits, attitudes, needs and wants of consumers without a disability. Be aware of and open to the opportunities to change how you communicate with a person of a different ability.
Practicing accessible marketing shows that your business or organization is inclusive, stays relevant to trends and market changes, and follows the law as it applies to a diverse audience.