Malcolm Poynton and Dove’s Campaign for Real Beauty


The 6th Pioneer in our reveal series is Malcolm Poynton, the inspirational Executive Creative Director at Ogilvy One (London) who brought the massive digital vision for Dove’s Campaign for Real Beauty to life.

The project’s global ambition required an approach to digital that had never been achieved before. Poynton, a New Zealander with plenty of adland experience, had the know-how to bring the project’s momentum into the age of digital advertising.  In a campaign that featured real women rather than models, it became the first digital campaign to drive participants to a fully fledged supportive online community that reached over 200 million people worldwide, with over 26 million people engaging with the campaign online.

Poynton – now Chief Creative Officer at SapientNitro – remembers that the ‘Campaign for Real Beauty line was not just a call to action; it was the ‘advertising strapline, the URL… and it was the Big Ideal’

The chapter profiling Poynton and the Campaign for Real Beauty traces the timeline of the campaign, and shows how a fantastic brand team, PR and advertising agency all worked to deliver a benchmark in online advertising. 

Pioneers of Digital launches in October – pre-order your copy now by visiting Buy Pioneers of Digital Book and check back soon for the next ‘reveal’.


Paul & Mel

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