Google Releases Plus Size Information For Marketers

This week, Google released Plus Size Info, part of an initiative to create marketing inclusion. Insights are part of Google All in one toolkit. Launched in 2017, All In was created to help Google improve representation and ownership. With Plus Size Insights, Google hopes to help its internal marketing efforts as well as creatives in the broader advertising and media industries positively and authentically portray people in larger bodies.

Google has partnered with the National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance (NAAFA) to develop Plus Size Insights. Tigress Osborn, president of NAAFA, wrote that being approached by Google was met, at first, with both intrigue and reserve. “Would Google be willing to learn more about the issues of anti-fat and fat justice, or was it just looking for shortcuts to show a few people barely taller and then pat themselves on the back for inclusion? asks Osborn in an article for AdAge. Over time, she writes, the organization developed trust that Google would treat the fat community with care.

Melina “Melu” López, Head of Product Marketing and Inclusion at Google, says, “In today’s world where people want to see the full spectrum of diversity, the representation of tall people in the media continues to lag behind. Our goal with All In, and body size information in particular, is to help Google and other marketers understand the nuances that exist in people who identify as taller so that we can create marketing that represents them authentically and positively.

Among the ideas are the following recommendations:

  • Validate bodies as they are, not as “works in progress” – it’s important to show tall people living all aspects of life, not just chasing social acceptance by demonstrating they’re trying to lose weight or apologizing for being fat.
  • Avoid glorifying food culture – remove any posts that encourage or celebrate dietary restriction or dietary/lifestyle habits for the sole purpose of weight loss.
  • Don’t center health on weight and don’t center value on health – moving away from associating fat with disease, laziness, shame or guilt, and noting that no person’s worth is based on their state of health.
  • In fact, show plus size people – when depicting fuller-sized people, show a wide range of bodies, including all sizes along the fat spectrum and all body shapes. Be sure to reflect fat acceptance not only in ads, but also on landing pages and on a company’s website.
  • Go beyond sidekick and friend – show plus-size people in relationships with people of all sizes, portray that they are loved, and avoid the “fat friend” stereotype.

Read the full Plus Size Insights report here.

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