David Ogilvy, born June 23, 1911 in West Horsley, England, was chiefly known for his advertising genius. He came to the US and, after living in Pennsylvania for a time, moved to Manhattan. Later on in his life, he moved to France, where he eventually died in 1999.
Early in his life, Ogilvy sold cooking stoves door to door. After starting an advertising agency called Ogilvy, Benson and Mather, he initially struggled to get clients. His method of advertising was based on the fact that successful advertising is based on information about the consumer. Some of his famous campaigns were: “The man in the Hathaway short,” “The man from Schweppes is here” and “Only Dove is one quarter moisturizing cream.” He eventually landed large clients such as Rolls Royce and Shell.
David Ogilvy was also known as the father of “the soft sell” and, although this did not bring in as much money as other methods, he gained respect for recognizing the intelligence of the consumer. Now in 2012, the focus of advertising still remains on the consumer. The consumer has gained even more prominence, as he or she is part of extensive social networks that often do the work for advertisers.
We feature him these two weeks in order to feature his ingenuity; the fact that he rose from the bottom to eventually become a world-class success and for his success in being an immigrant who changed the face of advertising in America.