Independent ad agency Allen & Gerritsen is partnering with Zeta Global to include hundreds of professional news websites and apps on the latter’s marketing platform that otherwise would not be included in general programmatic buying schedules.
The effort is part A&G’s broader initiative to support professional journalism and its influence against the growing encroachment of often unverified “feed news.” The partners say that this new “inclusion list has been hand-vetted for brand safety.”
Last year A&G, which has offices in Boston and Philadelphia, launched Protect Our Press, a program designed in part to galvanize the ad industry to prioritize spending with local news outlets.
Participants in the Zeta Global product include ownership groups like Gannett and Hearst, major regional newspapers like The Boston Globe and The Star Tribune, along with hundreds of smaller outlets that the agency said might otherwise fail to receive programmatic revenues from national marketing campaigns.
"Protect Our Press was founded with the belief that without the Fourth Estate, there is no check or balance on truth,” said Will Phipps, A&G’s senior vice president of media. In a world where feed-based news is overwhelming verified news, we must rise to this challenge and support the professional news industry.”
Since its launch, Protect Our Press has received 3,038 pledges from advertisers as well as endorsements from The Ground Truth Project, Report for America, The 4A’s, The Association of National Advertisers, as well as support from agencies and publishers including Havas Worldwide and the Association of Alternative News Media.
A&G said that since the start of the initiative last year its clients have moved the percentage of investment into news adjacency from 13% to 20%, And it’s hoping other agencies and brands consider making similar shifts.
A&G CEO Andrew Graff said "We are asking other agencies, brands, publishers and individuals to join this initiative with us through a range of actions from a 20% pledge in favor of news environments, to an individual subscription, to a local publisher. Every action contributes to more free and independent journalism, one of the core hallmarks of democracy."