Advertiser Associations Set New Diverse Media Investment Guidelines

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Last week, the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) and the American Association of Advertising Agencies (4A’s) released new guidelines intended to “help those marketers who are interested in supporting diverse suppliers but are still sitting on the sidelines and not sure where to begin.”

The report, entitled “Guidelines For Getting Started When Investing With Diverse Media Companies,” offered 11 guidelines to directly address what the report calls “a gap between interest and investment — between intent and action” where large companies aren’t investing in diverse suppliers “in any meaningful way.”

The guidelines include:

  1. Measuring market share for each ethnic segment
  2. Knowing the existing investments with diverse suppliers
  3. Getting started with suppliers that meet communications goals “even modestly,” then increasing investment over time
  4. Being open to “working with new content providers and ‘testing and learning’ along the way”
  5. Investing throughout the year and beyond “tentpole events” like heritage or history months
  6. Knowing “the diversity make-up of your teams both internally and with your agencies”
  7. Consulting industry resource lists for diverse suppliers
  8. Knowing how diverse suppliers are often qualified (i.e. diverse-owned as opposed to diverse-targeted)
  9. Evaluating importance of certification
  10. Being open to alternative media metrics. “Diverse media is likely to have higher CPMs and less scale, given that they often have more targeted audiences, but this shouldn’t be a basis for exclusion,” the report says.
  11. Being open to relationship-building and bringing diverse suppliers into “corporate ecosystems”

“Our earlier study clearly demonstrated that there are a significant number of marketers who want to invest in diverse media suppliers but need help getting started,”
says Bob Liodice, ANA CEO. “These guidelines will help them develop a strong and substantive investment strategy that includes increases in diversity spending that reflect each company’s customer base.”


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