“Recently we have all seen how traditional demographics research can fail spectacularly in predicting outcomes – especially in a polarized, ‘post-fact’ environment,” said Graves, “but behavioral scientists look beyond demographics and beyond what people say, to the inner workings of how people view the world and create their own identities.” Graves noted behavioral scientists have shown that instead of targeting people, understanding them works better. Behavioral science helps us do that, creating far more effective ways to help clients achieve better outcomes.
The Ogilvy Center for Behavioral Science will do just that, plus create a comprehensive, new approach to achieving client goals by combining the legendary Ogilvy expertise in brands, with new cognitive and behavioral insights. The approach is called “B4” due to its focus on Brand, Brain, Behavior, and Bias.
Graves said he spent eight years finding, digesting and sorting research, but the key was creating a way for non-scientists to use the findings in practical ways. “This is not a niche,” cautioned Graves, “It drives big increases in effectiveness for everything from health and wellbeing, the environment, personal finance, social issues, politics, crisis management, employee engagement, and sales of products and services.”
The Ogilvy Center for Behavioral Science will launch in Q1 2017 and will scale across Ogilvy over time. The Center will appoint a board of scientific advisors as well as partner with and build on the groundbreaking work of the behavioral expert practice group, Ogilvy Change, based out of London and Washington, DC — led in the UK by Vice Chair Rory Sutherland and Managing Director, Mark Lainas, and led in Washington, DC by Executive Vice President, Tony Silva — with further centers in Paris, Sydney, Milan, Madrid, Wellington and Johannesburg.
Additionally, the Ogilvy Center for Behavioral Science will partner with other behavior change specialists such as research giant WPP’s Kantar to create new cognitive insights, and with WPP Government to help in large-scale population behavior change for quality of life improvement.
Christopher Graves has led the industry as a proponent for bringing more behavioral science into communications. The Rockefeller Foundation honored Graves in 2016 with a prestigious Bellagio Residency, the Holmes Report named him a Top 25 Innovator, and he is a WPP 4-time Atticus Award honoree for thought leadership. Graves also co-founded the behavioral insights initiative at the Institute for Public Relations. His behavioral and cognitive insights writing has been featured in the Harvard Business review and widely cited in media.
Graves has served at Ogilvy Public Relations for a combined 12 years – as Global Chair, Global CEO, and APAC Regional CEO. Graves just completed two terms as Chair of the PR Council and he is an elected life member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
About Ogilvy & Mather
Ogilvy & Mather is one of the largest marketing communications companies in the world. It was named the Cannes Lions Network of the Year for five consecutive years, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016; the EFFIEs World’s Most Effective Agency Network in 2012, 2013 and 2016; and Adweek’s Global Agency of the Year in 2016. The company is comprised of industry leading units in the following disciplines: advertising; public relations and public affairs; branding and identity; shopper and retail marketing; health care communications; direct, digital, promotion and relationship marketing; consulting, research and analytics; branded content and entertainment; and specialist communications. O&M services Fortune Global 500 companies as well as local businesses through its network of more than 500 offices in 126 countries. It is a WPP company (NASDAQ: WPPGY). For more information, visit http://www.ogilvy.com/, or follow Ogilvy on Twitter at @Ogilvy and on Facebook.com/Ogilvy.