Our Young Guns profile takes a weekly look at some of the young talent across the advertising, ad tech, marketing and media sector in Australia. It aims to shed light on the varying roles, people and companies across the buzzing industry.
For our last Young Gun, we spoke to The Trade Desk trading specialist Greer Lester.
This time we chat to OMD Brisbane interactive director Jack Elkins.
AdNews recently ventured up north to find out more about the Brisbane agency scene, read more here.
How long have you been in the industry:
Duration in current role/time at the company:
10 months / three Years
What were you doing before this job and how did you get this gig?
Before I started at OMD I was touring around the US as part of a filming trip for a BMX team I was a part of. I got the opportunity to join OMD as an intern, quickly realized how much I enjoyed the work and dove in.
Define your job in one word:
What were your real and cliché expectations of working in the industry?
The clichés were long hours and frenetic pace and probably that most campaigns grow out of some miracle moment of insight.
How does the reality match up?
The reality I found was that although there are long hours and a fast pace, most of this is in the pursuit of putting together something great rather than just trying to get by. Similarly, although there are a-ha moments that crack a brief, this is almost always borne out of doing the work, collaborating with our media partners and going through the steps rather than miracle moments that form at the bottom of a bottle of scotch.
How would you describe what the company does and what does your role involve?
We’re all about driving performance for our clients by fostering the best people and always working with integrity. For our clients, this means embedding in their business and using insights and ideas to grow it and drive results. My role in this is about working with our internal business units and a myriad of incredible media partners to develop digital solutions that fit our client’s needs.
Best thing about the industry you work in?
I really enjoy the mixture of creativity and pragmatism in our day to day work.
Any major hard learnings in the job so far?
I think I’ve learned to be a bit more steady when it comes to forming opinions and certainly in voicing them. Digital media is quite humbling in that there is so much complexity that you’re always better off not rushing to an opinion.
If you had to switch over to another department, which would it be and why?
Search. I’m lucky enough to work with some talented people in this field during my day to day which has really sparked an interest to learn more and get my hands dirty.
What's exciting you about the industry right now?
I think there are some key areas in digital that are really hitting maturity like content and data partnerships which are enabling brands to offer a lot more to audiences in return for their attention.
What concerns you about the industry and its future?
The polarisation of opinion when it comes to traditional vs. digital channels – although it’s not reflected in the conversations I see occurring personally it feels like our industry is trapped in an us against them mindset that’s benefiting no one.
Who's your right hand person/who guides you day to day?
My right hand is probably Jasmine Poole. She’s a cracking account manager I have the pleasure of working with across most of my accounts.
And your almighty mentor that you hope to dethrone?
I wouldn’t want to trade places with the bloke but my business director Matt Farrington. As strategy and business lead I work with him across a great set of clients which has taught me a lot about managing relationships and excessively tight pants.
Career-wise, where do you see yourself in 2020 and how do you plan on getting there?
Hell of a question! It’s hard to say where I’ll end up but I’ve been consciously trying to build out my skillset as a digital marketer because I want to be able to contribute more to projects outside of the standard media spectrum and drive digital strategy beyond the brief.
What is the elephant in the room? The thing that no one is talking about – but they should be…
How important it is that there is a viable and future-proofed advertising model for the news industry. I don’t think anyone has clear picture of what a viable business model for a news organisation should look like and yet we’ve never needed a strong fourth estate more.
Where do you turn for inspiration?
I try to keep up with everything that firms like L2inc put out as well as the big guys like Facebook and Google.
Tell us one thing people at work don’t know about you? My team know way too much about me so I honestly couldn’t say.
Favourite advert is:
Hard to call it an ad but I love the Above All Else series that Asahi put together with Broadsheet.
I got into advertising because:
Growing up during the rise (and fall) of big social platforms I was always curious about understanding their business models and the impacts they have on the broader media landscape.
If I wasn't doing this for a living, I'd be…
I originally set out to do law at university so I guess I’d probably be miserable.
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