LONDON: Coca-Cola and Unilever have been named by Warc as the smartest brand and advertiser of the year, according to new rankings based on the Warc 100 database.

FMCG giant Unilever scored 550.7 points on the advertiser rankings, with PepsiCo second on 431.3 and The Coca-Cola Company third on 407.5. Scores are derived from the companies' performance in effectiveness and strategy awards around the world over the previous year.

Rounding out the top five on the advertisers list were Mondelez International (284.7) and Procter & Gamble (271.9).

Turning to the rankings for individual brands, Coca-Cola was the clear winner on 274.0 points, with McDonald's and Vodafone second and third on 233.8 and 220.6 points respectively.

To compile the rankings, Warc tracked more than 1700 winners in 75 different competitions. It assigned points based on the awards won (for example, Gold, Silver or Bronze), then weighted those points based on the competition's rigour and prestige in the global industry.

Louise Ainsworth, CEO of Warc, said: “These rankings show which companies are really using marketing communications to build their businesses. The Warc 100 allows client-side marketers to benchmark the performance of their marketing activity, and to see which companies are able to link creativity with business performance.”

Warc has also announced its rankings of top agencies, networks and holding companies. Colenso BBDO in New Zealand was the number one creative agency, with BBDO Worldwide and Omnicom finishing first on the agency network and holding companies rankings respectively.

Earlier in the year, Warc announced its inaugural Warc 100, ranking the 100 smartest marketing campaigns of the past year. This ranking was topped by 'Vodafone Fakka', a campaign from JWT Cairo for telecoms firm Vodafone.

Both the number one brand and advertiser were well represented on the Warc 100 campaigns list. For Unilever, the star performer was 9th-ranked 'Real Beauty Sketches', developed by Ogilvy & Mather São Paulo for Dove, its personal care brand. Also on the top 20, in 16th, was 'Help a Child Reach Five', a community initiative launched in India by Lowe Lintas, SapientNitro and PHD for Lifebuoy, a soap brand.

Meanwhile, Coca-Cola's flagship global 'Share a Coke' initiative, developed by Ogilvy & Mather Sydney, was the brand's top Warc 100 campaign, ranked 20th.

Data sourced from Warc