Our Diversity and Inclusion Working Group commissioned a research study back in March 2020 to track diversity and inclusion in advertising, carried out by Opinium and funded by the Direct Line Group. The aim was to be able to understand whether the public think that advertising is representative of society.
There have now been three waves of the research carried out to date which pose two critical questions:
- How far did they agree with the statement that it is important for different groups in society to be well-represented in advertising
- Did they agree that TV adverts reflect modern British society?
The third wave in February 2021 has been launched today and indicates that:
- 69% said that proper representation in ads is important
- However only 50% agree that TV ads demonstrated that diversity (up from 42% in August 2020 – a 9% increase)
- Only 45% of respondents agreed that TV adverts reflect modern British society, up from 36% in August 2020
Notably there have been improvements across all demographics, and an improvement in female representation within advertising. However those of East and South Asian ethnicity feel increasingly less represented within advertising. The Food and Drink sector is leading the way in terms of representation, whereas Automotive and Electrical goods sectors appear to be the least inclusive.