Blog Img

Racial diversity in marketing & advertising

Back to Blogs

Diversity and inclusion is becoming increasingly high priority in the marketing sector, and so it should be!


Justin Tindall, Chief Creative Officer of M&C Saatchi Group, controversially stated that he is “bored of diversity being prioritised over talent”, and we stand by many others when we strongly reject this notion.

Diversity isn’t boring, it’s not prioritised over talent. In fact, it contributes towards talent; building a strong team relies on the inclusion of varied and contrasting perspectives.

In October, the Advertising Association launched their campaign A Great Advert for Britain in light of the looming Brexit concerns that highlight the importance of cultural diversity.

Analysis of data they gathered through LinkedIn, found that a large proportion of employees in the advertising and marketing industries migrated to the UK from abroad in the last twelve months. The total number is three times higher than the corresponding figure in New York, and also more than Paris and Amsterdam.

They also reported that the UK advertising market supplies more talent to other advertising hubs than any other country. Therefore, it’s no surprise that international clients don’t want all-white teams running their global campaigns.

Dan Brooke, Chief Marketing and Communications at Channel 4, states that Channel 4’s “‘diversity of people, and therefore of perspectives and ideas” enables more innovative, creative and in turn, more commercially successful results.  

If you haven’t noticed, race discourse is at the heart of TV ads this year, with some of the biggest names in Christmas ads: John Lewis, M&S, and Ikea, all centering their narratives around families of black, or mixed-raced descent.

Katie Mackay and Hermeti Balarin, Partners at Mother (who created the Ikea ad), say that racial discrimination is still prevalent in 2017, but that  it’s hugely empowering for communities that face prejudices to see “a face like mine” on TV.

Many companies are realising that having a room full of people with diverse backgrounds operating with an inclusive culture, can not only produce strong campaigns drawing from each differing perspective, but also assist in avoiding PR blunders - such as Dove’s social media campaign disaster.

Of course, diversity extends beyond race. Gender, age, sexual orientation, disability and religious beliefs are all varying qualities that are important to be represented in the public eye. Sleek UK and do this beautifully in their 2017 campaign “my face, my rules”.

Here at DNA, we know that the key to any good creative team is diversity. With this in mind, we present the best talent suitable for the brief.


If you are looking for the best new talent to join your team, get in contact with DNA Recruit now on