The Guardian UK
In the long history of advertising, digital strategy is only a recent development. It’s an amalgamation of brand planning, product strategy, analytics, experience design, channel planning and research. But the most important prerequisite is a love of the digital world.
Being in its infancy, there remains no clear-cut career path for the profession as we continue to navigate unchartered territory. We are witnessing a marketing renaissance and as such, the industry is by no means void of luminaries. The following list identifies the up and coming superstars of a burgeoning profession; pioneers who are worth keeping an eye on as they continue to carve the future of digital strategy for generations to come.
1. Nicole Victor (London)
Nicole Victor was most recently the Global Head of Planning for Huge in the UK. Victor has spent over a decade in the digital world, working at leading digital agencies such as Razorfish, R/GA and Modem Media. In 2012, Victor helped establish the Huge UK offering and contributed to Huge’s success as one of the 10 Ad Age Agency A-List. She spent 2012 working on some of the most influential brands in Britain, Europe and the Middle East, transforming the retail landscape.
2. Niccolo Rigo (London)
Niccolo Rigo as a strategist at the London-based digital agency Work Club. He has previously worked at R/GA and on client side for INQ Mobile (Hutchinson Whampoa). Rigo has been leading the strategy for the Ballantine’s tshirtOS, Loud Blue and LAI activities – among the key drivers of Work Club being appointed Campaign’s Digital Agency Of The Year. He has also spoken on stage at LeWeb in Paris about the internet of things and brands.
3. Branislav Peric (Paris)
Branislav Peric works as a founder and strategy lead at Blast Radius Paris. Peric has a 13 years of digital experience behind him, and over the course of his career, Peric has worked for clients such as Nike, PlayStation, Levi’s and McDonald’s. Peric is passionate about digital advertising, digital platforms and digital economies of scale.
4. Ana Andjelic (New York)
Andjelic works as a Digital Strategy Director for Woods Witt Dealy and Sons. She jumped from academia into the digital world with her first job at AKQA. She went on to work at Razorfish, The Barbarian Group, Huge, and Droga5 for clients like Target, Pizza Hut, Amex, PUMA, CNN, Ford Motor Company, Maybelline and Kraft. In 2012, you could have found her contributing to Fast Company and AdAge, presenting at SxSW and teaching digital strategy courses.
5. Christel Quek (Singapore)
Christel Quek works as a global social marketing manager at Havas Media in Singapore. She started her career as a community manager with a tech-startup in Silicon Valley and has worked with brands such as DBS Bank, KLM Airlines, Intel, and Toshiba. She was chosen as a finalist in the category of “Best Young Talent” by the Interactive Advertising Bureau of Singapore in 2012.
6. Rhys Hillman (Melbourne)
Rhys Hillman works as a Digital Strategist for GPY&R Melbourne, originally working client side with a focus on brand strategy for a leading Australian FMCG company. You might have noticed Hillman’s work from BBH floating around the internet mid 2012. Social Rehab, which picked up attention across the globe, featured on Buzzfeed,AdWeek, CNET and Contagious.
7. Jinal Shah (New York)
Jinal Shah is the digital strategy director at JWT New York. She started her career as a fashion journalist for Lucky and InStyle magazines. Before joining agency-land as a digital strategist, she launched ideablob.com, the world’s first social network made by a credit card company. Shah conducted and published results of a proprietary mobile study on Mashable, wrote about what agencies can learn from start-ups for Fast Company and curated advertisements for TED’s Ads Worth Spreading initiative. She also advised a few TechStars start-ups through the JWT partnership.
8. Bud Caddell (Los Angeles)
Bud Caddell is senior vice president and invention director at Deutsch LA. Caddell started his professional career as a designer and developer before transitioning to strategy and general consulting at the New York-based thinktank Undercurrent. Now at Deutsch, he sits squarely between strategy and creative to bring breakthrough digital ideas to clients. Caddell has worked for such clients including Ford Motor Company, GE, Pepsi, CNN, HBO, Volkswagen, and Target. In 2012, Caddell launched a new service model for the industry with Inventioni.st, worked to develop a new discipline within the industry, and was listed as the top creative under 30 by Business Insider and a member of AdWeek’s Top 50 industry creatives.
9. Mark Pollard (New York)
Mark works as VP, brand strategy at Big Spaceship in Brooklyn. He works across ONE.Org, AXE, Chobani, and UNREAL. Before Big Spaceship he developed his brand planning skills at Leo Burnett Sydney. Last year he taught at Miami Ad School in Miami and online at Skillshare, spoke at eat:strategy in Toronto, DMA Conference in Las Vegas and TEDx Hackensack with some thoughts about men and how we keep them strange and how that hurts the world.
10. Mike Jacobson (Los Angeles)
Mike works as an Integrated Strategist at 72andSunny in Los Angeles, where he started his career in advertising five years ago. For the last year and a half he’s been working on Call of Duty – the biggest entertainment franchise in the world (including Call of Duty’s collaboration with YouTube mega-celebrity FPS Russia or in their integration with Bad Robot’s Action Movie FX App). Now by night, everything changes; he’s a self-deprecating, professional magician, performing close-up magic at private parties and corporate events for everyone from Facebook to Disney everywhere from Los Angeles to Warsaw.
Julian Cole is strategy director at Bartle Bogle Hegarty – you can follow him on Twitter @juliancole.