Black sheep


Bartle Bogle Hegarty

We are a creative agency obsessed with making brands more valuable

By Bartle Bogle Hegarty

BBH believes in the power of difference to make a difference. We call this zagging. It’s how we commit to creativity to change the fortunes of brands and businesses.

We started in London in 1982 and our first ad for Levi’s showed a herd of white sheep looking in one direction and one black sheep looking up and out in the opposite direction. This picture was accompanied by a simple statement that read ‘When the world zigs, zag’.

Zagging wins customers and share. It helps you outmanoeuvre your competitors. It makes your marketing more efficient.

After seven years of partnership, we’ve achieved an ROI of £13.65 for every £1 spent with Tesco, helped Tesco Mobile reach its highest ever score for consideration and grow its pay monthly customer base by 6%, grew Burger King’s customer penetration by 9ppt, helping generate a 100% uplift of Whopper sales and enabled Audi to grow 7.6 times faster than the UK car market. It’s why we see effectiveness as our superpower – after all, we are IPA Effectiveness Agency of the Year.

Our people

In 2022, we completed our new leadership team which marks an especially important year for BBH as we celebrate our 40th birthday. Alex Grieve, one of the most decorated creative leaders in the industry became our new CCO, joining Helen Rhodes (ECD) to complete our creative leadership in London. The new team is headed up by CEO Karen Martin (Campaign’s Agency Leader of the Year 2021), Managing Director Holly Ripper, Joint CSOs Will Lion and Simon Gregory and Chief Production Officer Stephen Ledger-Lomas. They have wasted no time in proving themselves a force to be reckoned with, earning the title of WARC’s most effective agency in Europe and securing new-business wins like Barclaycard. Not to mention opening a brand new office in Dublin.

The work

We genuinely believe in the power of partnerships at BBH. From our enduring long-term partnerships with Audi, Tesco and Barclays to our more recent relationships with Ribena and Barclaycard, we believe in bringing brand and business together. As our founders once said: “Our objective is effectiveness, our strategy is creativity.”

Most recently, we have:


Ribena helps people laugh through life’s little stumbles. Introducing the tag line ‘Chin up’.


A woman and her seven-foot-tall polar bear boyfriend get in the mood for love by talking dirty about their shameful ecological indiscretions.

Burger King

A floating Whopper ignores broken hearts, back garden gatherings and stranded mountain hikers in its bid to satisfy its flame fetish.

PCUK Ode to Dads

Quirky habits, bad jokes and, even worse, dancing serve as a reminder of everything we’d miss about dads if they weren’t around.

Tesco Mobile – Hero

The first outing of the helpful Tesco Mobile trolley on an epic mission to save a customer from an imminent price hike.

The culture

The black sheep represents our culture, our way of business and the people who work here. We believe in the power of creativity to make a positive difference not only commercially, but also for people and communities.

In the past couple of years, we have introduced a range of industry leading initiatives, programmes and partnerships designed to get new and diverse talent into the agency and the wider industry. These include:

The Unmistakables: in 2021, BBH became the first agency to team up with training organisation The Unmistakables to educate employees around different areas of inclusion – ethnicity, religion, disability and gender – as well as examine how all these elements feed into the agency’s creative output. This partnership has led to Cannes-winning work for Tesco Ramadan.

The Barn: in 2021, BBH hired ex-Watford course head Tony Cullingham, to lead a revamp of our creative placement programme, the Barn. The fully paid 10-month programme offers people from diverse backgrounds a gateway to a career in advertising. Fast-forward to August 2022 and BBH’s first group of Barn students just finished their course. We’ve hired one creative team among them, and the rest have already got placements and job offers from other leading creative agencies. Applications for the next round of the Barn are now closed and we’re looking forward to welcoming our fresh batch of students.

Hidden: we work with recruitment specialist Hidden to reshape our entire hiring process, from writing job specs to interviewing candidates.

Hidden creates diverse talent and inclusive cultural strategies for a better working world. To achieve this, they work with teams and hiring managers to educate them on the change needed to create equitable hiring processes. This is to ensure everyone has an equal opportunity for success at BBH, no matter their background, and feels included and a sense of belonging when they join the agency.

Unsigned: originally launched by BBH in 2018 as Unsigned, the Unsigned Union is an evolution of the agency’s annual showcase, which has brought together some of the most exciting and progressive artists, photographers, filmmakers and illustrators since 2018. Now working with other leading agencies to maximise the search and opportunities for undiscovered talent in the UK.


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