Young Gun: Zenith account director Ashton Bell

26 September 2019

Our Young Gun profile takes a 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.

Today we speak to Zenith account director Ashton Bell.

Time in current role/time at the company:
14 months.

How long have you been in the industry?
Ten years.

How did you get here? Was this always the plan?
I always knew I wanted to work in a creative industry, but with a somewhat lack of creative skills, I didn’t know where that left me. After accidentally landing a role as a receptionist at a media agency in Perth, one thing led to another and I soon realised there were plenty of excel spreadsheets for me to master in the advertising industry!

Who is your right hand person/who guides you day to day?
Our Melbourne GM, Megan Kay. For the last five years, she has been able to pinpoint the exact moment I start to get too comfortable, and then pushes and challenges me in the best possible way – it is these challenges that I thrive on.

What’s the best thing about the industry you work in?
The people. Hands down. The industry is bursting with such passionate, intelligent and down-right hilarious individuals that make every day coming to work a pleasure. It is a massive motivation and inspiration to work with these leaders of tomorrow.

And the biggest challenge?
As much as technology, AI and data excites me, I worry that the human touch will be left to the wayside as clients and agencies rely on data as the single source of truth. I worry that creative thinking, gut-feel and emotional instinct will be compromised in favour of cost per acquisitions or data centric conversions. But what I am most excited about is, that it is our responsibility to educate and empower - and to ensure campaigns are a combined mix of human touch, with the numbers to back it up.

Whose job have you set your sights on in the future?
Our CEO Nickie Scriven would be the one to de-throne!

Where do you turn for inspiration?
Female leaders in our industry. It is so motivating to see passionate innovators and instigators who are using their voice to change power structures and form a lasting impact for the next generation of women in this industry.

My favourite advert is:
Anything with a jingle that can get stuck in your head for years – Aeroplane Jelly, Chicken Tonight, Caramello Koala or Birds Eye Fish Fingers. Just to name a few. But a personal favourite is Cadbury – Wouldn’t It Be Nice. Because yes, yes it would be nice!

Tell us one thing people at work don’t know about you?
I’m probably the loudest person at my agency, so there’s unlikely to be much that people don’t know about me!

In five years' time I'll be:
In an industry as ever-changing as ours, it’s hard to know. But regardless, I hope to be happy, healthy and probably still a very loud talker.

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