GroupM media agency Essence has named Laura Wade its Head of Sustainability as it works to grow an environmentally sustainable digital-media ecosystem.Wade will work across units and practices, including programmatic, strategy, planning and data, to help teams embed sustainable practices and create new products and services that enable Essence to reach its net-zero targets. She will also work with clients to create net-zero practices in the media and marketing spaces.
Wade will also work with the agency's marketing and business development departments on sustainability efforts related to prospective client projects and pitches.
Developing climate education programs for Essence employees are also part of her remit, as is working with media owners and other partners to identify new sustainability initiatives to take to Essence clients.
The appointment follows a 2021 report by the agency, “Advertising in 2030” that includes predictions that environmental considerations will become a primary factor in consumer decision making.
Previously Wade was vice president, content and innovation at the agency but also devoted time to the shop's environmental practices. Last year she completed the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership course and is an active member of Mission Zero, a GroupM cross-agency group.
Like other Adland companies, WPP and GroupM have earlier announced net-zero carbon emissions target dates. Wade will also set complementary goals for Essence that go beyond these previously stated commitments.
She also leads the Essence Environmental task force 'Planet Team' in EMEA and is an active member of the IPA climate charter steering group.