Yesterday, we were thrilled to join our partners Mindshare and Givsly in sponsoring a panel where media professionals from the GroupM network shared their perspectives on their professional experiences as members of the Asian American and Pacific Islander community. Presented live and virtually from Mindshare HQ in New York City, “Ascending API+ Angles in Advertising” explored how marketers can keep media plans open to diverse voices, how the media industry’s workforce has evolved in regard to diverse and historically marginalized voices, and how marketers can develop more inclusive media strategies.

Our incredible Senior Digital Strategist Jonathan Chan moderated the fireside chat, where he was joined by Ritu Trivedi, Executive Director, Client Leads at Mindshare, Shweta Vij, Senior Partner, Director, Insights & Analytics at Neo Media World, and Karen Chan, Managing Partner, Investment Strategy, and Shagufta Gupta, Director, Data and Analytics Services, both from GroupM.

On the topic of developing more inclusive advertising campaigns, the panelists discussed how the AAPI community is not a monolithic entity, and shouldn’t be treated as such in media plans. It’s an incredibly heterogenous demographic subset, comprising dozens of countries, regions, and ethnicities within those regions. Developing more inclusive media plans therefore recognizes that this audience comes from different backgrounds, with varied interests and preferences.

The topic of racism in the workplace was also addressed. While overt and subtle stereotypes, microaggressions, and other forms of racism still persist in the workplace, several of the panelists remarked on progress that has been made, and the importance of conversations such as this one to spread awareness and educate colleagues to shine a light on these issues. The conversation has evolved from visible representations to discussions of more abstract issues such as unconscious bias.

On a related note, the panelists also shared perspectives on the use of technology in media buying. The panelists cautioned that media targeting is often based on U.S. Census data, which has historically struggled to accurately represent immigrant communities. Representation bias in training data for artificial intelligence could further erode AAPI representation and outreach, so media professionals should strive to be intentional and inclusive around their use of new technologies.

This important conversation couldn’t have happened without the support of the API+ employee resource group at Mindshare. Thank you to the API+ organization, our partners Mindshare and Givsly, our amazing speakers that shared their perspectives, and everyone that tuned in!