Ad Age Town Hall: Debating multicultural marketing

From our friends at Ad Age:

Multicultural marketing has long been considered a box in which a brand needs to check off, resulting in surface-level attempts at diversifying casting or running commercials on media specifically targeting people of color. With many marketers in recent years favoring a total market approach to advertising, there’s been an increasingly heated debate on whether general market agencies can truly market to multicultural audiences.

As this discussion will take place in a town hall format, attendees are encouraged to submit questions when RSVPing for the event.

Agenda (All times in ET)

11:00 a.m.
Welcome remarks
Jeanine Poggi, Senior Editor, Ad Age
Lindsay Rittenhouse, Reporter, Ad Age

11:05 a.m.
The state of multicultural marketing
Jill M. Kelly, Chief Marketing Officer, GroupM U.S.
Kimberly Paige, Executive VP and Chief Marketing Officer, BET Networks

11:25 a.m.
Redefining and understanding the new “general” market
Gilbert Davila, CEO, DMI Consulting and Co-Founder, ANA’s AIMM
Isaac Mizrahi, Co-President and Chief Operating Officer, Alma DDB
Sarah Squiers, Senior VP of Business Development, Univision Communications Inc.

11:45 a.m.
The culture within: how a diverse workforce influences multicultural marketing
Soon Mee Kim, Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer and Executive VP, Omnicom Public Relations Group
Tiffany Edwards, Global Head of D&I, Droga5

12:05 p.m.
Where and how to find multicultural audiences
Andrea Carrasquel, Head of Brand Partnerships, Tumblr
Vinay Shahani, VP of Integrated Marketing Operations, Toyota Motor North America

12:25 p.m.
Making authentic creative for multicultural audiences
Yari Blanco, Senior Manager of Multicultural Partnerships, Twitter
Ryan Robertson, Global Head of Brand Marketing, Popeyes
Lewis Williams, Executive VP and Chief Creative Officer, Burrell Communications Group

12:45 p.m.
Closing remarks

12:50 p.m.
Programming ends

Full details about the event and how to RSVP can be found here.

Ad Age Small Agency Awards entry deadline

Each year, the Ad Age Small Agency Awards uncover and honor small, independent agencies that are producing innovative and exciting work. These teams strategize and execute groundbreaking ideas to compete with work done by some of advertising’s oldest, largest and most sought-after partners.

The competition is tough, but the reward is big. Finalists will be notified mid-June and winners are announced and celebrated at our Small Agency Conference & Awards, to be held in July 2020.

The final deadline to enter is April 23, 2020 at 5pm EDT

Call for entries: Ad Age Small Agency Awards

Since virtually every agency in Idaho qualifies as a small agency under Ad Age’s guidelines (sorry Publicis and Accenture Interactive)…

Each year, the Ad Age Small Agency Awards uncover and honor small, independent agencies that are producing innovative and exciting work. These teams strategize and execute groundbreaking ideas to compete with work done by some of advertising’s oldest, largest and most sought-after partners.

The competition is tough, but the reward is big. Finalists will be notified mid-June and winners are announced and celebrated at our Small Agency Conference & Awards, to be held in July 2020.

The final deadline to enter is April 23, 2020 at 5pm EDT

More information about the Ad Age Small Agency Awards, how to apply, and past winners can be found here.

The well-crafted brief

If you haven’t seen it by now, you owe it to yourself to take a few minutes and watch Close to Home, the latest in the It Can Wait campaign from AT&T.

Go ahead, we’ll wait.

As good as this piece is, for those of us in the ad world, the story behind it is even better.

Recently, Ad Age published The Story Behind AT&T’s Disturbing Phone-Safety Ad, Ann-Christine Diaz goes inside baseball on the film, how it was made, and the thinking behind it.

A few notable nuggets from the article:

AT&T research found that while the general audience, namely, consumers in their 30s, had agreed with messages from the previous ads, they were “rationalizing, giving reasons why they could [use their phones and drive] safely, whether it’s because they’re an experienced driver, or doing it at a stop sign,” among other things, said Ms. Kuckelman. Moreover, it showed that not just texting or email, but social media and other phone activities were contributing to accidents.

And this:

“The agency brief started with, ‘think of this not as an advertising campaign but an opportunity to save lives,'” Mr. Planchon said. “They wanted the tone to be raw and emotional.”

Take a few minutes and read the entire article. It’s worth it.

In the end, however, this a fact that we’ve seen over and over — in the right hands, a well-crafted creative brief provides the framework, and the opportunity, to do some amazing work.

If you’re on the creative side, insist on them. If you’re on the account side, write them. Then rewrite them. Make them better. Your client — and your agency — with thank you for it.