Creative is Alive and Well in Multicultural Advertising

October 3, 2014

By Mala White, senior manager of committees and conferences

Earlier this week, we named the thirty finalists for the 2014 ANA Multicultural Excellence Awards. Congratulations to everyone and good luck at the awards ceremony in November!

From the underdog small budget campaigns to the greater spending powerhouses, everyone started off on equal footing. Creativity and relevancy were key to deciding the finalists. As an observer of the voting process, I have to say that I was impressed with the discussions around the submissions, what worked, and what didn’t. It was exciting to watch which entries made it to the top! 

Submissions this year included an engaging new category – People with Disabilities. From emotionally charged videos to powerfully crafted print ads, the submissions across this one and all the categories were on a whole other level. So, kudos to all the creative teams involved in putting these wonderful campaigns together. 

In addition to People with Disabilities, a category that I particularly enjoyed viewing was LGBT. The entries did not disappoint. Three of my favorite LGBT submissions were; Allstate’s Safe in my hands campaign designed to send shivers down your spine, Mondelēz International’s fight against hate with Love campaign, and Michael Sam’s emotional Judge me message. Each and every entry in this category touched a nerve. As a viewer, I appreciated and applauded the creative teams behind such amazing and moving campaigns.

The submissions in all the other categories remained equally impressive with entries from the likes of Allstate, Dallas Pets Alive!, Dunkin’ Brands, Heineken USA, Intel, McDonald’s, PepsiCo, Procter & Gamble, State Farm, The Coca-Cola Company, and Walmart to name a few. Faced with the intimidating task of selecting the finalist in each category, I must say the judges should be applauded for their valiant effort!

With submissions at an all-time high, the biggest jump could be found in the Total Market, Digital Media and believe it or not, Print, categories. What does that say about multicultural advertising?

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