(click ads, all scanned from Adweek)
The September 12th print issue of Adweek featured a special advertising section for the 2011 ADCOLOR® Awards. Several ad agencies jumped at the chance to create a piece of communication that attempted to convey that they're not houses of exclusion.
Top Left—TBWA, an agency with a "creative" reputation (Skittles, etc), creatively created a run-on diversity word. It gave me a honking headache trying to read it. Grade: C-.
Top Right—DraftFCB, an agency with a questionable reputation when it comes to race sensitivity in ads, honored their CEO honoree with an ugly, unsubtle LABEL metaphor ad. "Street smart." Terrible. Grade: D-.
Bottom Left—Wieden+Kennedy, an agency with a creative reputation (Nike, Old Spice, etc.), went with an ironic "white" ad in honoring their CEO honoree. It at least acknowledges that the ad biz is "diversity-challenged," but white Dan is "changing things." They didn't list any of those things, I presume, out of respect for the ad's black space. Grade: C+.
Bottom Right—BBH, another agency with a creative reputation, wins the diversity-off. Create something unarguably pithy, and get the fuck out of there. Grade: B.