Lloyds named new winner of Channel 4’s diversity competition

The bank has belatedly won Channel 4’s Diversity in Marketing Award, after Volvo’s shock decision to reject the £1m prize last month.

diversityLloyds Bank has been named the new winner of Channel 4’s annual Diversity in Marketing Award, almost three weeks after Volvo pulled out of the competition after claiming it had not approved its creative agency’s entry.

The bank’s campaign, focused around non-visible disability, is expected to launch in the first quarter of 2018 – although no exact timings have yet been set.

Marketing Week understands Lloyds’ entry, which was submitted by its creative agency adam&eveDDB, was a close second to Volvo in the original judging and was highly commended by the judges.

Lloyds has been known for its focus on diversity, having previously spoken out about LGBTQ+ issues and the importance of being inclusive of disabled consumers.

“Lloyds Banking Group is committed to addressing the increasing need within today’s society to support mental wellbeing. We are delighted to be recognised with the diversity in advertising award to help support this ambition,” says Ros King, communications and innovation director at Lloyds Bank.

Volvo pulled out of Channel 4’s competition, and so passed up on £1m in free airtime on the broadcaster, late last month just as it was expected to launch the campaign. The car marque was crowned the winner in July for its pitch around non-visible disability, with the idea submitted by its creative agency Grey London.

However, Volvo said the agency “submitted an entry to the Channel 4 competition that had not previously been shared with us, nor approved for production”. It claims to have only realised this last month, despite winning four months earlier and with the ad expected to be aired this autumn.

Channel 4 has been on a mission to get advertisers to be more diverse and inclusive in their advertising for nearly two years. Yet so far Maltesers is the only brand to run such a campaign after it won last year’s competition.

READ MORE: Maltesers unveils braille bus poster as it puts inclusivity at heart of the brand

None of the shortlisted campaigns from last year were ever made. To try to encourage that this year, Channel 4 promised to match airtime for any campaigns that were shortlisted but didn’t win. Marketing Week understands the broadcaster is currently in discussion with numerous brands about taking up its offer.