In a bid to help strengthen multicultural marketing efforts by brands and agencies, the Association of National Advertisers has formed a new group called the Alliance for Inclusive & Multicultural Marketing (AIMM).
The move comes amid a heightened debate among marketers and agencies about how to achieve greater diversity in the industry. Several big marketers — HP, Verizon and General Mills — have recently demanded that their agencies meet certain diversification goals.
General Mills, for example, is demanding that agencies vying for its creative account, now in review, have creative departments comprising 50% women and 20% minorities.
Also, while brands often talk about the importance of multicultural marketing, some in the industry believe marketers aren’t deploying the resources to do it effectively.
Commenting on its new initiative, ANA CEO Bob Liodice stated: “As the marketplace becomes increasingly diverse, the ANA recognizes that the strategic evolution of multicultural marketing becomes even more important to brands. To facilitate and accelerate that change, ANA invites the marketing community to come together to lead the pursuit of opportunities and to address the challenges before us.”
Among other chores, AIMM is tasked with organizing research projects and developing insights and a “knowledge center” that may help industrywide multicultural marketing efforts.
The ANA said the new alliance will be co-chaired by Liodice and Michael Lacorazza, EVP, brand and advertising-integrated marketing at Wells Fargo. Board members will include Gilbert Dávila and Lisette Arsuaga, copresidents at Dávila Multicultural Insights (DMI), and Carlos Santiago, president of Santiago Solutions Group (SSG).
So far, AIMM members include Hispanic marketing trade group AHAA: The Voice of Hispanic Marketing; Anheuser-Busch, Burrell Communications, Coca-Cola, Dunkin’ Donuts, IW Group, Kaiser Permanente, Kellogg, López Negrete Communications, NBC Universal, OMD, Procter & Gamble, Target 10, Univision, Video Advertising Bureau and Wells Fargo.