IBM, Levi Strauss, Ogilvy snare top global accolades

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Ogilvy Interactive and its largest client, IBM Corp., are the world's biggest winners of new-media awards for creative work.

In an exclusive ranking compiled for Advertising Age International by Richard Mellor of the winning entries from 10 leading new-media companies shows during the last 18 months, OgilvyOne's Ogilvy Interactive's New York office scored almost twice as many points as any other agency.

A spectacular online campaign for IBM catapulted Ogilvy Interactive to the top of the first-ever international ranking of new-media winners. The series of interactive banners imaginatively highlights IBM e-business solutions for companies such as Charles Schwab & Co., Yamaha and Vespa and allows users to play a piano keyboard and take part in a tennis tournament.


"IBM calls its strategic vision for the future of technology e-business, a metaphor for customers, employees, vendors and suppliers to all be connected," says Mr. Mellor, compiler of the rankings and executive creative director, Hyperinteractive, London. "Ogilvy Interactive created an interactive banner campaign for IBM e-business solutions - educating people about e-business opportunities, conveying the stature of the e-business vision and positioning IBM as the business technology leader for the next millennium. This three-part offering has all the qualities of an all-time classic: humor, persuasion and interactivity."


The agency's creative director, Jan Leth, is "without question, one of the leading lights of new media," he says.

"Ogilvy Interactive was the global advertising agency with a dedicated interactive capability and is now the largest integrated interactive agency in the world," Mr. Mellor says.

Just last month, the IBM campaign picked up the Cyber Grand Prix at the International Advertising Festival in Cannes, and also scooped two of the other eight Cyber Lions awarded, for rich-media banners and a "beyond the banner" category including interstitials, minisites and push technology.

"This is definitely the best online campaign of the year and will go on to dominate the awards circuit," Mr. Mellor says.


The ranking of advertisers that commission the most winning work is led by IBM and Levi Strauss, but also includes global brands such as Nike, Microsoft and Disney.

Other key findings from the ranking:

The U.S. dominates the ranking of the top 30 award-winning new media agencies. Twenty-four are American, the majority based on the West Coast. Just three are from the U.K.: Hyperinteractive (owned by Mr. Mellor), Bates Interactive's London office and Hub Communications.

After the U.K., the Germans are the new-media leaders, with Elephant Seven Multimedia, Hamburg, ranked No. 7. Elsewhere in Europe, Dutch agency CyberLAB/Euro RSCG, Amstelveen, ranked No. 24. Outside the U.S. and Europe, only Brazil's DM9 DDB Publicidade, Sao Paulo, made the Top 30. DM9 DDB has the country's best agency new-media department, headed by 25-year-old Paulo Jorge Pereira.

Two of the Top 30 creative award-winning new media agencies are actually clients. Disney Interactive and Microsoft Corp. rank as No. 10 and No. 12, respectively, with creative work produced in-house.

Euro RSCG and USWeb/CKS are the only agencies in the Top 30 with more than one office. Offices were ranked individually. But had USWeb/CKS' Santa Clara, Calif., and Portland, Ore., offices been combined, it would have ranked No. 2. Similarly, if Euro RSCG DSW Partners, Salt Lake City, and CyberLAB/Euro RSCG, Amstelveen, been combined, Euro RSCG would be No. 3.

Laurel Wentz is editor of Advertising Age International.

Copyright July 1999, Crain Communications Inc.

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