NEWS30 March 2021

Guide to representative ad development published

Media News UK

UK – The World Federation of Advertisers (WFA) has published a guide aimed at helping advertisers and agencies avoid bias during the creative process.

Empty ads on Underground escalator

The publication, produced by members of the organisation’s diversity and inclusion taskforce, covers each stage of the process of advertising development, from the initial brand challenge to evaluation and analysis.

It covers guidance and resources for those producing ads to make sure their strategy is based on diverse consumer insight, including questions agencies should ask during the process, such as whether there is any bias used in research and whether it captures representative perspectives.

The report also states that advertisers should ensure that creative pre-testing includes a check for bias or stereotyping, and that they have allowed ‘a safe space’ for honest critique.

Jerry Daykin, WFA diversity ambassador and senior media director at GSK, who led the initiative, said: “Often the barriers to representative creative come in the form of unconscious bias. This guide aims to highlight some of the simple nudges and critical questions marketers can use to avoid the gaps in representation that these biases can create.”

Belinda Smith, WFA global diversity ambassador and Americas chief executive at m/Six, said the guide illustrates “how we can completely rethink or interrupt a process to ensure we’re living up to our goals and making our industry better with each piece of work”.