Monthly Roundup: Women´s day ads

Monthly Roundup: Women´s day ads

Every year is the same: women's day arrives and the tributes begin. Some brands get it right, others get it wrong. Today's monthly roundup brings together the best and worst campaigns for International Women´s day according to Simantel and Stratitude, the two agencies of the month. Take a look.



  1. Gilette by Grey
    By Sylvia Schutte – MD at Stratitude

Nearly two-thirds of South African children grow up in homes without fathers. It’s often single mothers, other female family members or grandmothers who raise these children on their own. This film advertisement by Grey South Africa is just beautiful. It tells the story of one of these women and how she raises a man through her care and love. Warning – it tugs at the heartstrings!

2. Heineken by Publicis
By Sylvia Schutte – MD at Stratitude

This is not a women´s day ad, but I absolutely love this Heineken ad, which takes a playful look at gender stereotypes, pointing out that plenty of women prefer beer to other drinks. Not only can I completely relate to this, but I also love the humor, the way women are portrayed and the fact that the ad doesn’t take the obvious route, instead it shows men choosing to drink cocktails.

3. P&G by Wieden + Kennedy
By Maggie Whalen Misselhorn, Principal and Owner at  Simantel

This ad by P&G immediately caught my attention for a couple of different reasons. While, yes, it does a great job tugging at the heart strings with its emotional storytelling, what’s really striking is how they look at the stories of amazing athletes from a different perspective: the powerful point-of-view of a mother. And with the sentiment of thanking mothers everywhere and the statement #LoveOverBias, this message expands outside of just the 2018 Winter Olympics and becomes timeless. Two years later, it definitely left an impression on me. Watch for yourself.


  1. Bic (unknown agency)
    By Sylvia Schutte – MD at Stratitude

In 2015, a South African pen manufacturer had to apologise after its “empowering” message to women, urging them to “look like a girl and think like a man” caused outrage on social media.

Bic South Africa posted the ad on its Facebook page to celebrate National Women’s Day. The ad showed a smiling woman in a suit with arms folded, it read: “Look like a girl, act like a lady, think like a man, work like a boss #HappyWomensDay.” The ad was eventually deleted but the brand damage was done.

Screenshot 2020-03-27 at 16.19.25