Channel 4 to bring back ‘Superhumans Wanted’ competition

The competition offers free ad space to brands using their advertising to help change consumer attitudes towards disability.

Channel 4 is relaunching its ‘Superhumans Wanted’ campaign as it looks to follow-up on the commercial success Mars experienced after it won the competition last year.

Speaking at the Diversity in Marketing and Advertising Summit today (4 April), Dan Brooke, chief marketing and communications officer at the broadcaster, told the audience that the broadcaster plans to re-run the competition this year following its commercial success.

“Mars’s vice-president of marketing Michele Oliver said it saw the best campaign results in eight years. So now she has been telling marketing directors around the world, who will find it interesting. We will be rerunning the campaign this year,” he said.

Exact details on how the competition will work are not yet clear. Last year, Channel 4 offered the winning brand £1m of commercial airtime during the Rio Paralympics. Every pitch had to prominently feature disabled talent and issues.

The aim was to get UK advertisers to think differently about how they represent disability. Channel 4 expected between 20 and 30 applicants, but saw nearly 100 brands and agencies enter the competition. Maltesers, along with its agency AMV BBDO, won the pitch, and subsequently released three ads that had disability and diversity at their heart.

READ MORE: Channel 4 – ‘Diversity sells and we’ve proved it’

Brooke has previously said he wants to drill down further into diversity after finding that although disability is “one collective noun, it is actually 20 to 30 different impairment types all of which are different and unique”. He also wants to explore mental health and social mobility at the broadcaster.

The competition is part of a wider strategy at Channel 4 to grow and develop disabled talent in the media industry. It has pledged to double the number of disabled people featured in its 20 biggest shows.

Diversity and Inclusion Champion is one of the categories at this year’s Marketing Week Masters of Marketing awards, taking place on 3 October. Entries are now open. To find out more visit www.festivalofmarketing.com/awards

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