Industry Profile: Jamie Connolly at Wavemaker

By AdNews | 10 May 2022
Jamie Connolly

Industry Profile takes a look at the professionals working across the advertising, adtech, marketing and media sector in Australia. It aims to shed light on the varying roles and companies across the buzzing industry.

This week we speak to Jamie Connolly, managing partner at Wavemaker Sydney.

Name: Jamie Connolly

Job title: managing partner, Wavemaker Sydney

Time in current role/time at the company: 6 years at Wavemaker, 6 months in my role.

How would you describe what the company does?
At Wavemaker, we positively provoke growth for our clients’ businesses, by shaping consumer decisions and experiences through creative use of media, content and technology.

What do you do day-to-day?
Find ways for my clients businesses to grow, and find way for my team to grow professionally.

Define your job in one word:

I got into advertising/ad tech/marketing because:
Growing up, I loved the creativity of advertising, how entertaining, fun and moving it can be. what fascinated me was the psychology behind it. How do we know what action we want our consumers to take, then find the best way to deliver? This is why I got into advertising and why I believe we’re lucky to do what we do.

What’s the biggest challenge you face in your role?
Keeping everyone focused on the important and not distracted by just the urgent.

What’s the biggest industry-wide challenge you’d like to see tackled?
As an industry we need to focus on what works as opposed to what’s trendy. We’re an industry that can be guilty of being more interested in using the latest buzzword than we are on simplifying the task at hand and driving business results.

Previous industry related companies you have worked at:
MEC (now Wavemaker), MediaCom, Starcom and OMD UK.

Notable ads/campaigns you have worked on:
Working with Colgate to launch its equity campaign and partner with the AFL was a highlight. Covid put this campaign under a great deal of strain, but the way Wavemaker and Colgate came together as a team to overcome obstacles and ultimately grow together is something I’m very proud of.

Another highlight was our campaign for the launch of Bridgerton on Netflix, which drove more than 900% media ROI in social buzz, conversation, media PR and editorial – and went on to win the best multi-platform partnership at the AIMCO Awards.

Who is/has been a great mentor to you and why?
Toby Hack, now CEO of PHD Global Business, remains a fantastic mentor. It doesn’t matter what he has going on in his life, he is always willing to take the time to help, guide and advise.

Words of advice for someone wanting a job like yours?
Genuinely care! You must care about wanting to do the best work possible for yourself, your clients and your team.

If I wasn't doing this for a living, I’d be:

My favourite advert is:
I still love the Tango ads from many years ago, in particular Blackcurrant Tango Sebastian and Orange Slap. It’s confronting, provocative work that made an impact for the brand. Can we please start making ads like this again?

Music and TV streaming habits. What do you subscribe to? 
Netflix. Nothing beats a Netflix Original in my eyes.

Tell us one thing people at work don’t know about you?

I actually miss the lockdowns. Staying at home, watching Netflix and reading books is a dream weekend! Now I have to make up things that I do at the weekend to sound more interesting…

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