In 2016, the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) launched its SeeHer initiative to create a more accurate portrayal of women in the media. At its launch, the ANA provided agencies, marketers and media shops with toolkits to score their creative to ensure there was no unconscious bias in ads.
The original goal was to increase the accurate representation of women and girls in advertising and media by 20% by 2020, the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment. According to SeeHer co-founder Patty Kerr, the goal was reached in late 2018. In 2019, the remit expanded to have an 80% bias-free media ecosystem by 2030. As such, content and networks joined the SeeHer movement. Throughout its existence, the program has had the power, weight and support of brands.
Celebrating the initiative, and tied to International Day of the Girl Child, the ANA released a new video. The anthemic spot from agency Known is intended to inspire both marketers and the next generation of female leadership. The film is filled with huge names in culture, sports, entertainment and marketing.
Included in the 60-second piece are SeeHer advisory board members Erin Andrews, Maria Bartiromo, Katie Couric, Lori Greiner, Busy Philipps and Michael Strahan, along with other celebrities like the Bella Twins, Milck and more. Also included are well-known marketing industry executives like Nadine Karp McHugh (who serves as SeeHer president), Kerr, WW chief brand officer Gail Tifford and The Female Quotient CEO and industry bon vivant Shelley Zalis.
Each person in the video shot footage themselves, giving personal and inspirational examples of how they “see her.” Getty Images also partnered on the campaign, providing photography.
“We always look to create actions from insights, because we want to drive impact,” said Karp McHugh. “This is a rallying cry and the catalyst that sits between our marketing members and the rest of the marketing landscape.”
Though it is driven by the ANA, the campaign’s goal is to also target consumers with the program’s inspirational message over the long term.
“This is an always-on campaign,” Kerr said. “Society influences media, and we’re constantly looking to amplify this message.”
In addition to the anthem video, the campaign extends across social media with social tiles made for each participant, Facebook profile frames and shareable Instagram Stories assets that anyone can use.
“This partnership is much more than one day,” said Mark Feldstein, president Known Studios. “This is a thoughtful strategy creating a steady cadence of moments so that this narrative can build consistent, systemic change.”
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