Tackling representation in Advertising

Project ada

MediaCom, alongside ISBA, the Advertising Association and the IPA, leads project to track representation in advertising.

At MediaCom, we are strong believers that everyone should be represented equally, and that’s why we aim to improve representation in our industry, specifically both in front and behind the camera of TV ads. MediaCom has been working with ISBA, the Advertising Association and the IPA, to develop a tool to track representation in the ad industry.

The tool was inspired as an advertising equivalent of Project Diamond, a system that gathers diversity data in UK TV productions. It will be an industry-first, systematic overview of all sides of the industry, from creative to development to production. The tool will work with existing trade bodies who certify ads, when a spot is submitted, an automated response will ask the agency to share a list of personnel involved in the ad. Initially, the process will be voluntary.

Leading the project is MediaCom’s Glass wall Network – a group of female leaders from brands we work with, including Bayer, Betfair and TUI, that focuses on equality in the workplace.

Chief Transformation Officer Sue Unerman, said: “Real change needs to be driven by real data; if we can’t measure our efforts, then they end up being meaningless. While we know there is room for improvement in advertising representation, we simply don’t know the extent of the problem. This tool aims to change that”.

We’re excited to see our first report from this in April, and in the future we plan to extend the scheme to other media channels – including digital, press and radio.

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