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Top 5 advertising campaigns that stand out from the rest

Updated: Jul 4

As a creative agency, we’ve certainly analysed our fair share of B2C marketing material over the years. We decided to reflect on what we considered as the five best recent marketing campaigns that tackle some of the more difficult but important subjects.

Ranging from charities to global corporations, their message has kept them firmly in the public eye and transcends generations of consumers. When it comes to subsequent awareness and action, the proof really is in the pudding...

Be The Match: Be The Guy

Before this campaign, non-profit organisation Be The Match (helps saves lives through marrow donation) was facing a tough challenge: how to reach out to the ideal 18-24 year old male donor type. So what did they do? Flipped the traditionally patient focus campaign on its head by focusing on the donor and the amazing opportunity to save a life. Using popular platforms among young people, such as Snapchat, to drive awareness and relevance, the campaign saw the number of young male donors increase by over 200%. So what can we learn from this? Grab your audience’s attention by doing the unpredictable and communicating in the correct channel.

Always: #LikeaGirl

Now this one really tugs at the heartstrings. Taking up the everyday stigma surrounding girls in sport, the campaign tackles the stereotype that the boy’s way of playing is better and that doing something ‘like a girl’ immediately makes it weak. By acknowledging consumer challenges and tackling social issues, Always taps into our innate sense of empowerment as an audience that can impact change.

State Street Global Advisors: The Fearless Girl

This is a remarkable piece of breakthrough advertising, especially for a finance company. Erected secretly the night before International Women’s Day, “The Fearless Girl” statue takes up a defiant pose to stare down the 28-year-old Wall Street “Charging Bull”. Serving as a symbol of female leadership in the epicentre of the world’s financial capital, the statue urges companies to hire more women in business leadership positions. The use of a little girl is also a stroke of genius; not only do you see yourself in her, you see your children, the future and a new era of equality.

CALM: Project 84

With 84 men committing suicide in the UK every week, this campaign focuses on what is, unfortunately, a very topical issue in today’s society. The art installation designed by street artist Mark Jenkins,

places 84 male statues on top of ITV’s This Morning studio to urge for real government action against suicide. Using workshops involving bereaved family and friends, each sculpture was modelled on a real man that took his own life, adding a tragically human aspect to the campaign. Not only did the project evoke a massive emotional response, it also resulted in 34% more people contacting CALM for help and gained 2.1 billion pieces of media. This campaign is a prime example of effective emotional marketing being able to bring people together; to quote CALM’s CEO Simon Gunning “This fuels hope, and hope fuels action”.

Dove: Campaign for Real Beauty

Known globally as bringing truth to advertising, Dove’s ‘Campaign for Real Beauty’ chose to use ‘real’ women, prompting consumers to look at what attributes made them beautiful. Here it wasn’t about selling soap but tackling a worldwide problem – a lack of body confidence. While only 23% of women felt they were responsible for influencing their own definition of beauty in the media, Dove provides a fresh outlook on the concepts of beauty in modern society. As for sales of their product, they increased from 2.5 billion to over 4 during the campaign. Moral of the story: sell an idea and the product will sell itself.


So how can the success of these campaigns be replicated you ask? Well, all these award-winning campaigns have one standout characteristic in common – emotion. According to Harvard professor Gerard Zaltman, 95% of our purchase decision making takes place subconsciously. So forget rational; customers make decisions based on how they feel. As a result, customers who feel emotionally connected to a brand are twice as valuable as satisfied customers because they are less likely to be influenced by price but instead by what the brand represents.

This theory doesn’t stop at global brands either; whether you’re big or small, profit or non-profit, emotion is a key device in appealing to any target audience.

Here at DMA, we ́re passionate about brand stories and what creates a successful campaign. Whether it’s a decision to completely rebrand or an internal company video, we help your brand get the success it deserves. For all enquiries please contact our Managing Partner, Philip Martin at

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