Advertising

So happy to see that FCB resigned Nivea for their homophobic wimpery. Anyone else come up against similar clients that outright refuse simple inclusion in their ads?

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Years ago we suggested a young, diverse cast for a sports brand spot. Client sees the headshots. Sees one black guy, their response was; “Yep, good, we need some diversity.” They then see a few more non-white faces, and their almost immediate response was; “No, no no. This is far too urban”. Cue the agency digging a bit deeper to determine said client’s interpretation of ‘urban’...

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I have. A CMO told me they wouldn't cast a trans woman in their spot because they didn't want to "reinforce perceptions that the brand is quirky, different or strange."

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Another point of view: When you resign a big account it’s going to cost jobs. If you are Carter Murray yours won’t be one of them so you don’t care. Is being able to send a press release to the trades that you stood up for the community equal I’m worth to the people who will be out of work at the end of the year? If he took a pay cut Or the organization agreed to pick up the laws then that would be worth talking about. I would not want to lose my job because my CEO wants to legitimately take a stand , or grandstand. Put people first. Even if you have to work with a client you find distasteful.

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Methinks someone believes doing the right thing doesn’t also equate with smart business sense. I’m curious where you draw the line for reasonable “grandstanding” @CD3 & @Digitas1

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Yes I have. Homophobic, islamiphobic and racist all in one phone call. I elevated it to agency leadership but it was brushed under the rug.

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I told them I didn’t feel comfortable working on it (as a gay person myself) but I also didn’t really want to get laid off and the agency wasn’t doing well at the time

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"I dont believe in Pride Month" I lost all respect for the client after hearing that.

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Worked for a client who wanted to be inclusive and show different nationalities in their work which was aligned to my own direction (as I’m of mixed heritage myself). But as I showed model selects for new campaigns they always steered against my choices with “too dark, way too Latino, hmmm...too ethnic looking.” And they always wanted to show more light skinned minorities who could almost pass for Caucasians.

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I know people don’t think of redheads, even though we got beat up as kids and are constantly being made fun of as adults, and nobody cares. I saw this in an advertising book from some years back, and it made me sad

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As a kid my auburn hair was more defined and got picked on relentlessly being called crotch rocket, gay, fag etc. Mind you this was Long Island and some white trash occupied the middle and high school. It certainly leads to appearance discrimination as any form of bullying, inferior comments, judgment, unequal opportunity falls under it. Thank god we're a part of a few percent in the world who have it. I'll toot my horn to that.

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When I worked on that account the film director was gay and they had a macho prototype they wanted to cast for. That was 10 years ago. If there is research showing high percentage of gay guys interested in their products, and they are intentionally ignoring that demographic that would be foolish. When I was working on Jamaica Tourism the client specifically steered away from rastas and weed. Wanted to highlight golf. They were missing a huge opportunity to create niche travel tours to a huge market. But they felt they wanted to change perception and ultimately it was their choice. Do not go to Jamaica on vacay if you are out and proud - still a very homophobic environment

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Our senior client is a complete misogynist to his own employees and women at agency. Agency leadership shrugs. Very disappointing.

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