Reckitt’s stain removal brand Vanish and Havas London have taken out Channel 4’s Diversity in Advertising Award for a creative idea that tackles visible or non-visible disabilities.
The winning idea, which will be created into a TV ad campaign next year, aims to help girls be seen as part of a broader public understanding of autism. It was created in partnership with the charity Ambitious about Autism.
It is the first time in the awards’ history that a theme has been revisited after the inaugural awards in 2016 also shone a spotlight on how disabled people are represented in TV advertising.
Recent research reveals that just 4% of TV ads in the UK feature disabled people (compared with3% in 2020), which is the 22% of the UK population who are disabled. Only 1% of TV adverts feature disabled people playing lead roles, which hasn’t changed since 2018.
The winning entry was selected from a shortlist of seven brands and the campaign is due to launch in Spring 2023 with £1 million in commercial TV airtime across the 4Sales portfolio, including Channel 4, All 4 and Channel 4’s YouTube channel.
The winner also receives an additional £100,000 bespoke social media campaign created by the broadcaster’s award-winning in-house digital content team 4Studio will be created, covering both production and media value across Channel 4’s Facebook, Instagram and YouTube Channels.
“After one of the most competitive shortlisting and pitch processes we’ve ever had for the Diversity in Advertising Award, Vanish has been crowned a very worthy winner. We’re incredibly excited to see the creative idea come to life and see it on air,” Channel 4’s chief revenue officer Verica Djurdjevic said.
“It’s vital we continue to encourage authentic representation through advertising and we thank all the brands for their participation in the awards so far to help us on this journey.”
Reckitt Hygiene UK and Ireland marketing director Cigdem Yildiz Kurtulus said: “We’re so happy to lead this mission with one of our loved brands, Vanish, with a positive and authentic campaign born out of our brand purpose to make clothes live longer. In doing so, we are delighted to work with Channel 4 to continue improving the representation of people with disabilities, visible or non-visible, in advertising.
“However, we’re very conscious our work needs to go much further and make a real difference beyond our screens, so we’re committed to making this happen at all levels.”
Havas Creative UK group chief executive Xavier Rees said: “This is a particularly special award to win. Improving diversity and inclusion within our agency and our industry remains one of our biggest priorities here at Havas. It will be a privilege to partner with Reckitt, one of our largest clients, to spark a much-needed public conversation around autism in girls; a subject that’s incredibly close to my heart.”