Toronto office pushes Ogilvy to the top of Effies’ North American network rankings

A strong performance by its Toronto office was a major contributor to Ogilvy being named the leading North American agency network—and second globally—in the 2020 Effie Index.

This is the 10th annual ranking of the agencies and marketers responsible for the world’s most effective advertising. The rankings are a reflection of the scores awarded to the more than 4,000 global Effie winners and finalists announced last year.

The Toronto office accounted for nearly half of Ogilvy’s points in the Effie Index, based on its strong showing at the inaugural Canadian Effies—where it won nine awards (including two Golds) for its work for Kimberly-Clark Canada’s Huggies brand (below), American Express, Post Foods and Unilever.

Ogilvy Toronto also placed fourth overall on the list of the most effective North American agencies, which was topped by Droga5. It placed 47th on the global ranking of agencies, led by FP7 McCann Dubai.

“We are so proud of the teamwork that led to this ranking,” Ogilvy Canada CEO John Killam told The Message.

Killam said Ogilvy came into the year with a goal of  building on the momentum established by last year’s additions of chief strategy officer Tom Kenny and chief client officer Marie-Lise Campeau.

“We’re rowing like crazy and the boat is starting to move,” he said.

Rethink tied with New York’s Terri & Sandy as the leading independent agency in North America (as well as 51st in the global rankings). It also finished in a tie for 18th place on the list of most effective North American agencies.

Bensimon Byrne, joined by its sister agencies Narrative and OneMethod, finished in a three-way tie for third in the North American independent rankings.

Cossette placed 11th overall on the North American list, largely on the basis of its work with the SickKids Foundation (which finished fourth overall in the ranking of the most effective North American brands), followed by Mindshare in 12th, and a three-way tie for 22nd between Anomaly, John St. and Sid Lee.

Canadian points also contributed to McDonald’s and American Express’ respective North American brand ranking of first and sixth. A&W placed 11th on the ranking of leading North American marketers, while Loblaw Companies Limited was among eight marketers to place 18th.

WPP was named the most effective holding company group in North America, with almost a third of its points coming from its Canadian operations.

Unilever was once again deemed the world’s most effective marketer, a title it has claimed in seven of the past 10 years. The Coca-Cola Company moved up one spot to second, based on its success across more than 30 marketers, while Nestlé, AB InBev (which broke into the top five for the first time) and PepsiCo rounded out the top five.

Coca-Cola retained its title as the world’s most effective brand, continuing a streak that has seen it rank in the top five since the Index launched in 2011 (including taking the top spot six times). Another perennial top five brand, McDonald’s, came in second, followed by KFC, Vodafone and IKEA.



Chris Powell