The imperative to create a more diverse agency culture is not something we should do because it is politically correct. It's something we must do to ensure the long-term success of our industry.
We are in the business of helping clients build their business through our unique ability to understand and connect with main street America. We did this well over the years largely because we tended to mirror the face of America. As the American landscape continues to become more diverse, so must agencies, or we risk falling out of touch with consumers and becoming less capable of providing clients with fresh, relevant ideas.
In many states across the U.S., multicultural markets are increasingly mainstream – not just in California and New York, but also in states like Delaware, Maryland, Louisiana and Nevada. In each of these states the white population accounts for about two-thirds or less of the total (2010 US Census).
If you want a glimpse of the future, look no further than the ethnicity of the youth market: among people under 18 years old, whites make up only 57% of this cohort. Millennials have grown up during a time marked by dramatic growth in immigration and racial integration. Multiculturalism is simply a fact of life for this group, reinforced early on by Sesame Street, and later in the classroom, as well as in film and music.
This film, The Pursuit of Passion: Diversity in Advertising, makes the case in an inspiring way.