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GroupM Expands Diverse Media Commitment To 5% Of Client Budgets.


GroupM is upping its commitment to diverse-owned and targeted media to 5% of client budgets. The increase comes after the ad agency giant reached its initial pledge made in May 2021 to allocate 2% to Black-owned media. The move will expand its commitment beyond Black media to include Hispanic, Asian and Pacific Islander and LGBTQ+-owned and -focused media.


According to Ad Age, the advertising industry is sending a message that 2023’s economic uncertainty won’t derail diverse media investments. That was the sentiment at Magna’s Equity Upfront in February. And Omnicom Media Group said spending on diverse-owned and targeted media increased 30% year over year in 2022.


GroupM formed the Media Inclusion Initiative in May 2021, an integrated investment strategy to support and grow diverse Black-owned media companies and creators. The program included a 2+% pledge to invest at least two percent of their total annual media budgets in Black-owned media. A “Diverse Voices Accelerator” positive impact fund was also part of the May 2021 commitment. These followed similar pledges by Dentsu Media and other agencies in the wake of the George Floyd murder and subsequent racial equity movements.


Such commitments had a positive impact on Black-owned media companies, including Urban One. “There has been significant interest in African American-owned and African American-targeted platforms from major advertisers all across the spectrum, which is considerably positively impacting our business,” Urban One CEO Alfred Liggins said during the company’s second quarter 2021 earnings call. “It’s my belief that this is systemic change, and not a moment in time.”


The expansion not only enlarges the effort beyond Black-owned media to include other diverse groups. It also extends it to diverse targeted media companies that are not necessarily diverse owned, Ad Age reports.

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