Philip McKenzie is Executive Director of AdvancingDiversity.org and Chief Strategy Officer, MediaVillage. Starting a new year is usually a time when all eyes and intentions turn toward the future. In that regard, the sentiments expressed for a fresh start in the early goings of 2021 are very consistent. But after a year like 2020 filled with such grieving and social unrest, the desire to move forward is even more acute. However, in our desire to move forward, it is crucial not to lose sight of why 2020 was so painful. The murder of George Floyd rocked us to our core. Cries of "I Can't Breathe" were mixed with calls to say "Say Her Name" as we also asked for justice for the murder of Breonna Taylor. Social unrest roiled our streets and demands for change in corporate America followed. The advertising industry was rightly taken to task for its lack of diversity. In response to that criticism, promises were made far and wide by leaders in the industry to do better. In Dear Advertising Community, a new open letter created by the Disney Ad Sales team, they ask the industry to hold fast to its 2020 promises and provide an intention for a better 2021. Signed by seven industry leaders: dentsu, ADCOLOR, Horizon Media, Omnicom MediaGroup, Publicis Groupe, Translation, and MediaVillage, this letter is a blueprint for a better advertising industry.
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