The Inclusion List: Best of DEI 2023

Who were the diverse voices in digital media and ad tech making waves in 2023?

Brands across every industry are still learning to create a space that adheres to diversity, equity, and inclusion. While some made it a part of their company goals to work towards DEI, others in the advertising industry are noticing that the era of diversity is not what it once was. 

Despite this, here at AdMonsters, we are working towards recognizing DEI by hearing from the diverse voices in our industry. We learned about the importance of cultural diversity and how people from all walks of life impact the ad tech industry through their tenacity and innovation. 

Here is AdMonsters Best of DEI or “The Inclusion List”: 

Black History Month

The stories in this inclusion list exemplify how the people working around us are making industry-wide changes. From a CEO of an SSP who moonlights as a singer to a CMO of the Brand Safety Institute who works on equity and inclusion, there’s something for everyone. 

AAPI Heritage Month

AAPI Heritage Month sets time aside in May to celebrate the contributions of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders who made history in their communities and the country. Here are just a few of the AAPi industry leaders who are making waves in ad tech: 

Pride Month

Every color of the rainbow touches the ad tech supply chain. For Pride Month, AdMonsters was proud to celebrate all our LGBTQ+ industry peers making a difference through their professional works and personal stories. 

Hispanic Heritage Month 

AdMonsters Hispanic Heritage Month lineup was unmatched. From a privacy lawyer to a thought leader working at the IAB, here are a few Hispanic ad tech professionals pushing the needle forward for DEI and ad tech solutions. 

How CEOs & CMOs Can Get Multicultural Marketing Right

Multiculturalism significantly shapes and drives mainstream marketing, and according to Crystal Foote, Founder of Digital Culture Group, marketers still need help grasping the concept. Despite strides made towards diversity and inclusion in advertising, there’s a profound gap between the intentions voiced by industry leaders and the actual outreach to diverse audiences.

Foote believes that the discrepancy between intention and action arises from several factors. Brands often need more internal multicultural representation necessary to align campaign messaging effectively. Moreover, brands need more data-driven insights to identify optimal approaches to reach diverse audiences online, compounded by broad, generalized strategies.

Bridging the Inequality Gap in Marketing With BRIDGE: Q&A With Founder Sheryl Daija

A key aspect of DEI involves a diverse workforce driving advertising for global audiences. As demographics evolve, businesses must work to embed diversity in their operations, with studies consistently showing that truly diverse companies yield increased revenue and expand their customer base.

Enter BRIDGE, a purpose-driven DEI trade organization focused on making DEI a practical reality. Launched in April 2022 by Sheryl Daija, BRIDGE aims to shift DEI from a mere philosophy to an operational business practice for growth.

“I saw the opportunity to create a trade organization that could leverage the same model we used to build marketing platforms. And I also realized that to drive real systemic change, we needed to bring together diversity, marketing, and business leaders and make DEI an integral part of the business,” said Daija. 

Strategies for Sustaining Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging as a Business Imperative

During a session at PubForum Coronado Island, Lisa Mae Brunson, founder of Wonder Women Tech, Alex Haluska, Sr. Director of Revenue Operations at MyCode, and Sheila Marmon, CEO and Founder of Mirror Digital discussed the strategies that they take in their roles to make sure that everyone on their team has a seat at the table, and that their business is inclusive and relatable for all consumers. 

“Diversity is not just an initiative but a reality of our pluralistic society,” said Marmon.