2021 Winner

Unilever (Dove)

Courage is Beautiful

Ogilvy Canada

GoldCreative Catalyst

GoldSocial/Conversational Strategy

BronzeCause/Public Service

With the Real Beauty brand platform, Dove redefined notions of beauty to be more inclusive and less rooted in conventional aesthetics. But over the past decade, many other beauty brands have adopted similar, purpose led marketing approaches. As a result, the Dove brand platform had become less differentiating and less culturally resonant. During the early days of the global COVID-19 pandemic, Dove saw an opportunity to redefine beauty once again by creating a campaign to announce their commitment of over $7.5 million to support frontline workers risking their lives around the world.

The objective was to reinforce brand affinity and relevance by creating awareness of Dove’s commitment to frontline workers: in times of crisis, beauty lies in what we do, not how we look. For most of us, the first weeks of the pandemic were a dark and anxious time. Many around the world already had heartbreaking stories to tell, whether through illness or because they were facing the social or financial consequences of the world shutting down to all but the most essential activities.

Despite these hardships, stories began to emerge of beautiful acts of compassion both big and small happening all around the world, and many of these stories were coming from heroic frontline workers putting their lives at risk to keep the rest of us healthy. Their acts of heroism in the face of illness and even death became an inspiration.

The idea was to show the beauty in these acts of courage. Using images collected from around the world across multiple social media platforms, the agency created a hero film: a montage of frontline workers and the simple but powerful statement ‘Courage is Beautiful’ and concluding with Dove’s commitment to supporting front line workers around the world.

The film, along with shorter cut-downs, launched first in Canada, then across North America on all three major TV networks. On social media, cut-downs of the film were supported on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram. They also created static visuals to be used in print and out of home, featuring images of frontline workers paired with the ‘Courage is Beautiful’ message. To ensure the message of gratitude was seen by the people who inspired it, they purchased billboards and bus shelters outside hospitals as a way of saying thank you.

Following the campaign’s success in Canada, it was adapted and ran around the world in 14 additional markets. On social media, the campaign garnered unprecedented engagement rates in all markets. In Canada alone they tripled category engagement benchmarks on Facebook (+220%) and Twitter (+200%). They had a 99% positive sentiment on social media and in the first 24 hours of launching, the hashtag was used 360,000 times.

The campaign generated 2 billion global earned impressions and 275 news reports including coverage on CBS This Morning, NBC, Glamour, CNN and Today. An Omnibus study in Canada showed significant uplift on equity with a +15pt Brand Affinity increase and a +8pt increase in main equity attribution. In the end, the campaign not only honoured the beautiful sacrifices made by frontline workers, but re-established Dove’s place in today’s cultural zeitgeist.

Brian Murray, Chief Creative Officer, Ogilvy, Toronto
Christian Horsfall, Group Creative Director (Art Director), Ogilvy, Toronto
Pam Danowski, Associate Creative Director (Copywriter), Ogilvy, Toronto
Tom Kenny, Chief Strategy Officer, Ogilvy, Toronto
Aviva Groll, Worldwide Managing Director, Ogilvy, Toronto
Beth Blatch, Account Director, Ogilvy, Toronto
Rebecca Tummers, Account Coordinator, Ogilvy, Toronto
Marie-Pierre Toure, Agency Producer, Ogilvy, Toronto
David Scanlon, Senior Print Producer, Ogilvy, Toronto
Ben Kay, Chief Strategy Officer, WPP, London
Nadja Bellan-White, Worldwide Managing Partner, Ogilvy, London
Daniel Fisher, Global Executive Creative Director Unilever, Ogilvy, London
Juliana Paracencio, Global Creative Director, Ogilvy, London
Sam Pierce, Global Managing Partner (Dove), Ogilvy, London
Georgie Howard, Global Business Director, Ogilvy, London
Mike Kerry, Global Creative Delivery Lead (Unilever), Ogilvy, London
Pia Smith-Boquien, Programme Director (Dove), Ogilvy, London
Sarah Thomson, Head of Art Production (Unilever), Ogilvy, London
Chloe Jahanshahi, Art Producer, Ogilvy, London
Jonathon Nixon, Art Producer, Ogilvy, London
Matthew Jones, Head of Integrated Production (Unilever), Ogilvy, London
Alessandro Manfredi, Global Dove, Executive Vice President, Unilever
Sophie van Ettinger, Global Brand Vice President - Dove Masterbrand, Unilever
Kristina Anzlinger, Executive Producer, Outsider Editorial
Nathan Olszewicki, Assistant Editor, Outsider Editorial
Kevin Sargent, Composer, Kevin Sargent Music, UK
Big Sync Music, Music Partner
Didier Tovel, Audio Creative Director, SNDWRx
Alison Lawee, Audio Executive Producer, SNDWRx
Billy Mead, Offline Editor, TenThree
Ed Hoadley, MD / Excecutive Producer, TenThree
Paul Ferdenzi, Offline Editor, Unit Post
Jo Papayyianni, Post Production Producer, Unit Post
Darryl Bolton, Executive Producer, Unit Post
Ben McIlveen, 2D Artist, Unit Post
Richard Evans, Technical Operator, Unit Post

Have questions? Need help?
Contact Rowan Traynor at 1-416-408-2300 x213 or rtraynor@brunico.com.