Outvertising tells brands to stand their ground in Pride 

The UK’s  advocacy group for LGBTQIA+ inclusion in marketing and advertising is backed by 64 of the industry’s most progressive and powerful organisations. 

Nicola Kemp

Editorial Director Creativebrief


As Pride Month kicks off Outvertising, the UK’s advocacy group for LGBTQIA+ inclusion in marketing and advertising, has today published a statement calling on brands to stand their ground.

The statement, which  has been endorsed by 64 organisations, including the World Federation of Advertisers, ISBA, Advertising Association, DMA, The Marketing Society, IAB UK, Dentsu, Grey London, Publicis Egalite, VMLY&R, Ogilvy, Stonewall, Pride in London, WPP Unite, WACL, NABS, Trans+ Adland and GLAAD, calls on brands to show true, not performative, allyship. 

The organisation is calling on advertisers to continue with their Pride campaigns and recommends exercising allyship through investment and divestment. The statement includes guidance for brands on navigating the challenges of an unprecedented and coordinated backlash to Pride in 2023. 

The allyship of business is essential, as government statistics for England and Wales show a 126% increase in hate crime based on sexual orientation, and a 156% increase based on Transgender identity, since 2017. The statement also includes a reassurance that corporate LGBTQIA+ allyship makes business as well as moral sense.

Inclusion is a business advantage

According to research from Portland 2 in 3 people under 60 in the UK (66%) believe it is important to fight discrimination against LGBTQ+ people. Research from Deloitte shows that more diverse and inclusive companies have higher levels of innovation and creativity, and greater brand appeal and loyalty with consumers who want socially responsible brands. While in the US a study from GLAAD revealed that if a brand publicly supports and demonstrates a commitment to expanding and protecting LGBTQ+ rights, consumers are twice as likely to buy that brand.

Outvertising’s  statement comes after a string of brands in the US have buckled to pressure to withdraw or modify Pride campaigns and activations, including Bud Light and Target.  

Commenting on the statement, Marty Davies (they/them), Joint-CEO of Outvertising explained: “Our community urgently needs brands to deliver on their promises of allyship. Anti-LGBTQIA+ groups want to see our community erased from the media, including in our advertising. Our industry is being tested. Advertisers need to show courage and run their Pride campaigns. Politicians have given ground. The media has given ground. We can’t afford for business to give ground, too.” 


You can find more advice on how to confidently stand your ground in the Outvertising Guide, in The Media Guide and in the Employer Guidance on the resources section of Outvertising’s website.

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