Thursday, May 7, 2020

Woman Founder Launches Black Biz App

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Nationwide In less than two years, Melanin Enterprise (aka "ME") - The Black Professional Social Network has gained national notoriety for being one of the best mobile apps in the country for discovering and supporting local Black-owned businesses, creating economic independence, and connecting like-minded people together through Sip -N- Play, the company's signature Black professional trivia game night and our in-app, exclusive "RealTalk" group chat.

EMichele Paul, owner and founder of Melanin Enterprise, says that since 2018, her app has helped thousands of small black-owned businesses all over the country reach their targeted audience through free local advertising on their "All Black Everything" City Guide.

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She says that the app is set up to provide Black business owners with global visibility while connecting them directly to consumers within a 100-mile radius, thereby creating greater local economic impacts. She created it like this so that consumer dollars would be recycled back into their local community and they would be contributing to building safer, stronger, more self-reliant communities for their families.

But it's not just about consumers supporting Black-owned businesses. Black-owned businesses have found these innovative ways to support each other using the Melanin Enterprise mobile app:

* Realtors use Melanin Enterprise to diversify their vendor list. They often find local home inspectors, landscapers, painters, roofers, plumbers, HVAC techs, moving companies, lenders, mortgage brokers, insurance providers, and the list goes on.

* Air BNB Hosts recommend downloading the app to find restaurants, bars, service industries, and events to out of town and international travelers visiting their cities for work and/or leisure.

* Truck drivers use the mobile app to find safe, local establishments along their routes.

* Businesses from around the country network with one another in our exclusive "RealTalk" group chat in the mobile app. It is like groups on other social networks except that it is created by us, for us, to connect in a meaningful way without the fear of being trolled or harassed.

EMichele also spoke about the impact that the Sip -N- Play game nights have made in her city. She comments, "In January 2019, we hosted our first Sip -N- Play game night. The goal was to bring the community together to build community alliances while supporting Black-owned businesses. In one year, we helped to create over 1,800 new and repeat customers and recycle over $32,000 into Black-owned businesses in Charlotte, NC. I could not be more thankful for the guests that have attended. Some of the guests that come aren't even from Charlotte. They drive in from other cities just to be a part of Sip -N- Play. At each event, I sometimes just watch in amazement and think to myself that if I didn't know any better, I would think that everyone that attended our events came together. There are truly no strangers at a Melanin Enterprise Sip -N- Play event."

During Sip -N- Play, professionals come together to:

* Have fun, relax, eat, drink, laugh, and play over 50 trivia games. Many of the games were created by black game makers (this brings visibility and creates new customers for black game makers around the country).

* Give vendors, Black business owners without a storefront, a chance to put their products directly in front of their target audience.

* Bring paying customers to Black-owned restaurants on their slowest nights!

* And probably, at least to EMichele, the most important reason, to build local community alliances that will inevitably create a stronger, safer, more peaceful and self-reliant community for our children to grow and prosper in.

EMichele is constantly striving to make Melanin Enterprise better both for consumers and businesses. She understands the value that it provides for the community. Amid the crisis that the country is currently facing, small businesses took a major hit. A MAJOR HIT! However, the government's priority was to bail out the billion-dollar corporations. This isn't new, the system is doing exactly what it was designed to do. That is why it's even more important for Melanin Enterprise to do what IT was designed to do.

She comments, "We use our phones and apps to do everything that is important to us, from keeping in touch with friends to paying bills, and now, we can use them to own our own destiny, celebrate our culture, create generational wealth for our children, support our businesses, and connect with like-minded people in our communities around the globe... in PEACE!"

Melanin Enterprise, the Black Professional Social Network is currently available on Google Play and the iTunes store. Here's a quick link to download the app:

To help Melanin Enterprise support more businesses and communities, please consider donating via CashApp: $MelaninEnterprise.

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Posted by community events coordinator, Nzinga Lonstein Austin, is a prolific blogger who writes on the entertainment industry and issues for people with developmental and physical challenges.

She is presently in high school looking to have a career in video, film, and media. You can see more of her entertainment writing on Lonstein Movies.

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