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How Inclusive Ads Impact Brand Metrics

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Advertising that is inclusive and diverse has a positive impact on a wide variety of brand metrics, according to research conducted by Microsoft, the technology giant.

Kya Sainsbury-Carter, vp/global partner service at Microsoft Advertising, discussed this study during a session at Advertising Week 2020, a conference held online.

“Brands that are inclusive in their marketing are viewed as more authentic and more trustworthy,” she said. (For more, read WARC’s in-depth report: Microsoft provides proof that inclusivity in advertising boosts performance.)

Microsoft’s research demonstrated that companies which run ads that embrace diversity and inclusion are regarded as “more trustworthy” by 68% of women and 60% of men.

That total, the study revealed, stands at 68% for ethnic minorities and 52% for Caucasians, indicating that the positive impacts are broad-based.

Microsoft also reported that brands running inclusive ads are perceived as “more authentic” by majorities of every demographic group it assessed.

Purchase intent rose for each cohort after viewing ads that were deemed as inclusive, too, illustrating that hard business results can follow from this strategy.

Sainsbury-Carter provided the online Advertising Week 2020 audience with some guidance on bringing inclusive values into each of their own enterprises.

“If you start with your employees, you start with your values, and you listen,” she said, “you’re going to come up with ideas that are more relevant to the market and more relevant to a broader array of the people who potentially could be your customers, but maybe are not yet fans.”

While noting “every company has to work on what this means for them”, she recommended being proactive. “I don’t necessarily think you should be waiting for the market to demand [inclusivity],” Sainsbury-Carter said.

“Show the market how valuable this is by bringing them more interesting offerings, more relevant messaging, more connected and more authentic positioning that resonates with them, without them even knowing that they cared about this topic.”

Credit: WARC

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