Thomas Crampton | The Innovator 25 2016
Thomas Crampton 2016The Innovator 25:

Thomas Crampton

Global managing director



There are many smaller changes that add up to a revolution. The main point is to constantly focus on change"


After working as a globetrotting newspaper correspondent for the New York Times and International Herald Tribune, Crampton took on a digital business development role for Taiwanese media conglomerate Next Media in 2007, serving as "entrepreneur-in-residence" as the company came out with numerous new lines of business, including its infamous animated news videos. He moved to Social@Ogilvy in 2009, turning the Asian outpost of the social hub from a handful of people in Hong Kong to a market-leading offer stretching across the region. Crampton was upped to global head of Social@Ogilvy in 2013, and relocated to London in 2015, overseeing a fast-growth, cutting-edge business that is considered pivotal to the future of Ogilvy & Mather Group.

How do you define innovation?

Innovation is when new ideas are applied to real world challenges.

Most innovative PR/comms campaign you’ve seen in the last 12 months?

Netflix France promoting creating live bus signs that react to the weather, news or events nearby with relevant recent content from Netflix.

What brands and/or agencies are most innovative when it comes to marketing/PR?

Nestle has an impressive record of deploying central initiatives and inspiring grassroots innovation.

Describe a moment in your career that you would consider ‘innovative.’

Dropping a 17-year career as a foreign correspondent to try out the world of startups.

In what area of marketing/PR do you see the most innovation?

Social media & online marketing.

How would you describe the communications/PR industry’s level of innovation?

More than other marketing disciplines.

Where do you see the greatest opportunity for marketing & PR to become more innovative?

Content & creative.

Who most influences how innovative a brand’s marketing/PR is?


Who is your mentor and why?

A trusted former boss who knows me in many different contexts.

How do you find inspiration?

By looking beyond the day-to-day to get a sense of where things stand now and where they could be.

Advice for people seeking to bring new ideas, ways of doing things to their organizations?

Innovation does not always blow trumpets and shout loudly from rooftops. There are many smaller changes that add up to a revolution. The main point is to constantly focus on change, change, change.

In your opinion, what’s the most innovative place in the world?

Anywhere undergoing rapid economic and social change. This may be an immigrant neighbourhood, developing country, a company or Silicon Valley.

What’s your favorite time of day and why?
Early morning before the day has started when I can run, reflect and take stock.