As director of multicultural marketing for Walmart, Sharonda Britton plays a vital role in the consumer marketing strategies at the world’s largest retailer. With a great deal of her focus aimed at multicultural markets, Britton is an essential part of the leadership charged with building brand loyalty amongst Hispanic, African-American and Asian consumers.
The Florida native and Florida A&M University School of Business and Industry graduate brings a wealth of creative ideas and earnest hard work to her job. EBONY.com recently spoke with her to find out what she does to keep the giant merchant on top.
The It Factor
Previously leading all of African-American and Asian strategy at Walmart, Britton now works creatively to expand the brand’s media presence, which includes working across a multitude of business brands and consumer goods.
“I work closely with our media agencies to create multicultural partnerships that amplify the potential of all multicultural segments,” she says. “I’m always looking for opportunities to better understand our customers, so that we can bring them the things that they want. I have a great job that allows me to work within my passions and learn new segments of the business.”
The Retail Advantage
In retail, it’s all about knowing the customers and providing them with a positive shopping experience. Britton is always looking for such opportunities, and travels constantly to meet with Walmart partners and customers to gain insights that give the retailer a competitive advantage.
“We already know our customers expect quality, variety and low prices,” she says. “But they are also looking for something more when they visit our stores. Walmart has stores in so many communities all across the country, which makes it important for me to travel, to connect with our team members and gain an appreciation of the interests and needs of our various consumer segments.
“Our customers are everyone, from single moms taking care of her children to parents who are supporting their kids in college. They live in rural and suburban communities and in urban and college markets. It’s a big priority for us to understand their impulses so that we can develop strategies that will give drive their overall consumer experience.”
Making Diversity a Priority
In terms of diversity, Walmart is an industry leader with a number of African-Americans in key roles across the company and is looking to attract more talent. “From corporate to retail, the company makes a real effort to have a workforce that reflects the multitude of ethnicities and population segments that live in the United States,” Britton says. “At Walmart, we understand the value of having members of every community as a part of our team. Having that makes us strong and helps us respond to the needs of our customer.”
Gil Robertson IV is an award-winning journalist, bestselling author and president of the African-American Film Critics Association.