LGBT people are still significantly under-represented in advertising

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The Reflecting Modern Britain report reviewed the top 20 advertising spenders of 2015, and found that less than one fifth of the people featured in TV and press advertisements reflected the full diversity of British society.The research, conducted by Lloyds Banking Group, shows that there remains a lack of accurate representation of various groups in society – particularly LGBT individuals, disabled people, and single parents in mainstream advertising.Despite clear fears in the industry that ads championing diversity may put off consumers, polling carried out for a report revealed 65% of respondents said they would feel more favourable about a brand which reflected diversity in advertising. Two thirds (67%) of respondents expect an advertiser to represent diverse aspects of society.The report warns: “It can be challenging for advertisers to represent certain groups such as [LGBT people] without a clear story or resorting to visual cues. The risk here is being stereotypical.“When it comes to disability it’s rarely seen and when it is, this tends to be a physical disability, yet a large proportion of disabilities may not be visible, making this challenging.”The report hails Wells Fargo’s sign langage ad, released earlier this year, as a good model for diversity.

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