Spikes Asia


OGILVY, Kuala Lumpur / COLGATE / 2024

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As a leading oral care brand, Colgate has been championing smiles for decades. We believe every smile is beautiful – whether you’ve got gap teeth, buck teeth, ‘fangs’, misaligned teeth, or whatever the world deems imperfect. There’s no perfect smile. But the reality is, 94% of people in Asia-Pacific feel they can’t smile freely, according to the Colgate Smile Study. Among this group, 2 in 5 have experienced smile shame at some point in their lives. We wanted to lead the change in the oral care industry, by raising awareness of smile shaming, and breaking the stereotype of what a beautiful smile means. We also set out to increase engagement with and positive sentiment of the Colgate brand.


The best way to fight smile shame, is to keep on smiling. We decided to adapt our logo – which features a smile – to celebrate every individual’s unique smiles. This was made possible by an A.I.-powered smile generator, which was trained with over 15,000 orthodontic photos. So it could accurately trace anyone’s smile into a personalised shareable Colgate smile. Each generated Colgate Smile logo became a badge of confidence, and was shared along with personal stories to help fight smile shame.


Advertising, particularly oral care communication, plays a huge role in shaping how society perceives what beautiful teeth look like. Brands have been featuring stereotypical teeth talents, reinforcing the belief that only the most aesthetically-pleasing teeth should be celebrated. To take a stand against smile shaming, we decided to make a statement during World Smile Day – using our biggest and most valuable brand identity asset, our logo. We empowered people to put their smiles onto our brand, and kickstarted a much-needed conversation about smile shame.


We fought back against smile shame, starting with Suzie. We decided to turn the logo on our smile into hers. Then we launched our campaign on an occasion that celebrates smiles, but has never been owned by a brand – World Smile Day. We leveraged PR to share our research findings on ‘Smile Shame’ in Asia-Pacific. Key opinion leaders then shared their personal ‘smile shame’ stories through social media, to encourage more people to open up on their own experiences. Following that, human portrait ads with personalised logos that celebrate every uniquely beautiful smile. Influencers, social content and digital OOH extended the invitation for everyone to join the movement against smile shaming – simply by using our Smile Generator AI tool to create a personalised Colgate Smile they could proudly share. Colgate even created toothpaste packs featuring personalised logos for those who had been smile shamed.


1) +308% owned social content views; +14% engagements

2) 100% positive sentiments for PR; 57% positive sentiment for KOL posts

3) 9K organic search of Colgate brand

Reach and Engagement:

Reach of 899,447,770, surpassing expectations by 21X // Generated 1,205 articles with media value of USD1.45M (35X ROI of investment).

Personal Resonance and Effectiveness:

Creator content led to significant uplift in media effectiveness. // 220% increase in views in Australia and 123-300% increase in clicks on TikTok and Meta platforms in the Philippines.

Advocacy Empowerment:

AI Smile Generator created 2.4K smile stickers and 2.3K hashtags through conversations initiated by Key Opinion Leaders (KOLs). // 94% positive response.

Impactful Communication:

4.3% uplift in Ad Recall in Thailand and a significant 10.4% uplift in Brand Association with World Smile Day on TikTok in the Philippines.

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