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Howatson+Company appointed as GMHBA’s agency of record

Australia – Health insurer GMHBA has appointed Howatson+Company as their agency of record across the GMHBA and Frank brands. The agency will handle GMHBA’s brand strategy and creative, retail, customer experience and brand identity work for audiences across Australia.

The appointment follows after Howatson+Company has been recently tapped by UNSW as its agency of record, and by MYOB as creative lead.

Helen Stevens, chief marketing officer at GMHBA, said there was clearly a strong cultural alignment throughout the process and GMHBA were left with a sense that there is a mutual desire to operate as a true partnership.

“We were deeply impressed with Howatson+Company’s response to the pitch. Howatson+Company demonstrated a depth of strategic thinking, and creative capability that we are confident will help position GMHBA and Frank health insurance brands for future success,” she said.

Meanwhile, Rebecca Robertson, managing partner at Howatson+Company, commented, “The team at GMHBA live and breathe their brand, with the voice and needs of the member genuinely at the heart of everything they do. We are delighted to help the team drive the next stage of growth for both the GMHBA and Frank brands. On a personal note, I’m thrilled to be helping shape GMHBA, a brand I’ve grown up with.”

The new agency win comes just days after Howatson+Company had appointed Doug Hamilton and Michael Kleinman as creative directors.

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Doug Hamilton, Michael Kleinman appointed as Howatson+Company’s new creative directors

Sydney, Australia – Advertising agency Howatson+Company has appointed Doug Hamilton and Michael Kleinman as its new creative directors.

Prior to joining Howatson+Company, Hamilton was a creative director at BMF and TBWA. Moreover, he also spent five years in New York at Droga5, and Anomaly. While Kleinman joins Howatson+Company from 72andSunny, where he was head of design. Prior to that, he also spent five years in New York at Droga5.

Commenting on their appointment, Hamilton said, “We’re delighted to be let inside the doors of Howatson+Company. One day in and we can tell it’s stuffed to the gills with lovely, clever humans. Michael and I never got to work together at Droga5, so we’re excited to have the chance now. We’re looking forward to rolling up the sleeves of our matching outfits and getting stuck in.”

Meanwhile, Levi Slavin, CCO at Howatson+Company, said, “I had the good fortune of working with Doug at Anomaly and have been a fan of Michael’s for ages. Both are splendid humans and extraordinarily talented. I’m absolutely thrilled they joined us in Sydney.”

In April 2022, Howatson+Company also added a duo to their creative team; Sophie Beard and Joash Tham are appointed as new creative directors.

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Howatson+Company appointed as MYOB’s creative lead

Melbourne, Australia – Advertising agency Howatson+Company has been appointed by Australian-based business management platform MYOB to be its creative lead on its new brand advertising across Australia and New Zealand.

While MYOB works with several external agencies, as well as their in-house agency, Howatson+Company will be taking the lead on their brand advertising. The remit spans strategy and creative for internal and external audiences across the region.

Belinda Watson, MYOB’s head of design, agency and brand, shared there was a true sense of partnership and shared ambition for the business, that stood out during the tender process.

“Howatson+Company understood our strategy and the direction of the business. It was clear they took the time to really listen to our challenges and have applied critical strategic thinking and creativity to position MYOB for success,” said Watson.

Meanwhile, Rebecca Robertson, managing partner at Howatson+Company, noted that MYOB is a household name with a proven history of helping Australian and New Zealand businesses succeed. 

“We are thrilled to partner with MYOB to help support them in their next stage of growth. The MYOB team acted with such openness and integrity during the pitch process, we can’t wait to bring our shared vision to life,” said Robertson.

In May 2022, Howatson+Company has also been appointed by Sydney-based university UNSW as media agency of record. The agency was appointed following a competitive tender process to service UNSW’s domestic and international recruitment.

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Aussie carbon neutral telco Belong asks us to consider using refurbished phones

Sydney, Australia – Local carbon neutral telco Belong has launched a new campaign called ‘Second Life Phones’, an eco-friendly alternative to purchasing a brand-new device, powered by Kingfisher. 

The campaign, conceptualised by Howatson+Company, sources the best pre-owned smartphones, refurbishes them and offers them to value and environmentally conscious consumers at a considerable price.

All phones are restored by Kingfisher, across a multi-point check, ensuring full functionality and battery performance at about 80% minimum of new. The packaging is fully recycled and has been designed to provide the buyer with the same satisfaction of opening a brand-new device.

As part of the campaign, a film was launched which subverts the tropes of typical phone launches, gloriously showcasing an old man’s forehead instead of the tech, to ask the question ‘why not consider life on a refurbished phone, which can be used in the same way as a new one?’. 

Aaliah Eggins-Bryson, head of product and marketing at Belong, said, “Too many Australians believe mobile phones have no material impact on the environment than other things in their lives but in fact, every year, the world throws away around 44.7 million tonnes of tech. This is why we’ve launched Second Life Phones; because the most sustainable phone is the one that already exists.”

Meanwhile, Gavin Chimes, executive creative director at Howatson+Company, commented, “It has been amazing to work as partners with the brilliant Belong team to bring this program to life. We’re proud to be providing an alternative to unconscious tech upgrades. And when you consider what most of us use our phones for – brunch pics, baby spam, screaming goat videos – you probably won’t know the difference. But the planet will.”

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UNSW appoints Howatson+Company as media agency of record

Sydney, Australia Sydney-based university UNSW has appointed Howatson+Company as media agency of record. The agency was appointed following a competitive tender process to service UNSW’s domestic and international recruitment. The appointment is effective immediately.

Sofia Lloyd-Jones, chief marketing officer, said Howatson+Company demonstrated their deep understanding of the sector, an intelligent, data led operating model treating media as a component of an integrated growth strategy, and a perfect cultural fit to the university. 

“We’re excited to appoint them as our media agency,” Lloyd-Jones said.

Chris Howatson, founder & CEO of Howatson+Company, shared, “UNSW is a top 4 Australian, and top 50 global university, and it’s right here on our doorstep. The opportunity to be part of such an accomplished team was a huge motivator from the moment we received the brief. Sofia has a brilliant vision for future student recruitment, and views the turbulence of the last two years as an opportunity to advance the university’s strengths.”

Meanwhile, Howatson+Company’s Head of Media Sasha Smith, commented, “We’re absolutely thrilled to be working with UNSW, an exceptional, value aligned partner for our team. We deeply admire their mission and vision, and are confident that together we can accelerate their future ambitions.”

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Sophie Beard, Joash Tham joins Howatson+Company as new creative directors

Melbourne, Australia — The advertising agency Howatson+Company is experiencing significant growth this year and has added a duo to their creative team; Sophie Beard and Joash Tham are appointed as new creative directors.

Prior to joining Howatson+Company, Beard was an associate creative director at the CHEP Network where she re-launched Flybuys with a Spikes Grand Prix winning music video, created 7-Eleven’s first beauty product and collaborated with artist James Dive on a film for AGL.

Beard’s work has been recognised internationally at Cannes, D&AD, The One Club and New York Festivals. But she is most proud of being an ‘Aunty’ and supporting the next generation of women in the industry.

Meanwhile, Tham returns home to Melbourne from ColensoBBDO, where he recently advocated for small businesses with an Axis grand-Prix award-winning film ‘The Dancer’ for BNZ. Prior to that he effectively outsmarted covid with a Spikes Grand Prix award-winning film ‘Make Lamb, Not Walls’ for MLA, helping The Monkeys receive Agency of The Year at CampaignBrief and B&T 2021. He also co-created the ‘MS Bike’ at Grey Australia which went on to win multiple Cannes Lions.

It is truly a homecoming for Tham. In just over 10 years, his career has taken him from Melbourne to San Francisco, New York City, Sydney and back, working with some of the industry’s best creative talent at some of the most notable agencies in the world.

Levi Slavin, CCO at Howatson+Company, said that Beard and Tham are incredible creatives and will make inspirational creative leaders and they’re nice people.

“Beard is super clever but always makes sure I don’t look stupid in front of clients. And Tham is about as neurotic and awkward as me. Seriously. The first time we shook hands, Tham spent 10 minutes talking about how my hand felt in his. In the end, I just had to walk off. But I digress. I’m beyond thrilled to have such an exciting creative team helping to lead our Melbourne office,” Slavin said.

Jointly, Beard and Tham, said, “We’re delighted to be joining Howatson+Company. It’s an opportunity to do the best work of our lives, with some truly talented people. We’re stoked to be part of growing the Melbourne office and are already getting stuck in on some great client briefs.”

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Howatson+Company launches campaign for Petbarn’s latest fashion range for pets

Sydney, Australia – Pet supplies brand Petbarn has launched a new campaign to introduce its new AW22 fashion range for dogs and cats. 

The campaign, which was created in collaboration with advertising agency Howatson+Company and fashion photographer Juliet Taylor, promises to make every pet moment glamorous, even the unglamorous ones, whilst showcasing a range of knits, raingear, and trench coats, amongst others.

Shannon Jenkin, Petbarn’s general manager of marketing, noted, “At Petbarn, we’re all about putting pets first. This is why our range of apparel is as well-made and stylish as any fashion brand. Makes sense that we treat it like one.”

Meanwhile, Chris Howatson, Howatson+Company’s CEO, said, “Pet wear is increasingly used as a form of human self-expression, but this campaign explores the idea that our pets have their own personalities and can be styled to match. We’re delighted to be sharing our first work for Petbarn.”

The campaign is live across digital, social, and OOH.

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Marketing Featured ANZ

Matilda Bay shows how ale perfection is done–by releasing its 27 ‘rejects’

Melbourne, Australia – In a bid to show to Aussies how they have perfected their Original Ale product, Australian brewery Matilda Bay has launched its limited edition of ales called the ‘Rejected Ales’, a 27-piece ale set that represents all of the ale’s rejected batches before it reached its final production.

The campaign, conceptualised alongside agency Howatson+Company, is represented by a short film that demonstrates Matilda Bay’s obsession with quality and relentlessly pursuing perfection in everything they do. For the brewery, rather than keeping these almost perfect beers a secret, the brewery has canned them and made them available to the public to prove just how good their Original Ale is.

Speaking about this campaign, Phil Sexton, founder and master brewer at Matilda Bay, said, “We’ve crafted beer to perfection our own way since 1983. If a batch doesn’t meet our impeccably high standards, we reject it. It might be a bit commercially reckless, but it’s just the way we do things around here. So, to demonstrate our dedication to crafting the perfect beer, we’re letting Aussies try our not quite perfect enough Rejected Ales. Which, after our Original Ale, are hopefully the second best beers you’ll taste.”

Meanwhile, Gavin Chimes, executive creative director at Howatson+Company, commented, “They say nothing tastes as sweet as success, but at Matilda Bay, failure is delicious too. Now we’ve put that failure in cans for people to try. We worked closely with the Matilda Bay brewers to capture the details of their arduous journey. We opened old wounds and old logbooks. And crafted every aspect of our campaign. It was only fitting, considering how much craft they put into their beer.”

With names like ‘Yeah…nah’, ‘Keep dreaming’ and ‘Ballpark’, each of the 27 Rejected Ale cans tells a story of its rejection. These have been brought to life in OOH, radio, press, social, retailer integration, and in store activations.

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Howatson+Company names Dom Hickey as new chief strategy officer

Australia – Advertising agency Howatson+Company has appointed Dom Hickey, former head of planning at advertising firm DDB Group Australia, to be its new chief strategy officer.

During her stint at DDB Group Australia, Hickey has worked with various brands such as Westpac, J&J, Coles, and Unilever as well as Domain. She has led the strategy on Westpac’s life moments, the Matriarchs campaign for Carefree, and the Australian launch of Tylenol. 

Moreover, Hickey has worked across every dimension of marketing from brand transformation to brand experience. She also teaches strategy at Ad School and Miami Ad School, as well as co-hosts a podcast, The Junior Mafia, to give the perspective of young people in the industry a voice. 

Commenting on her appointment, Hickey said, “I’ve been watching Howatson+Company from afar, and I’m delighted to get the chance to join them. It’s an incredible team of lovely people, smart, sharp and on the tools. I’m excited about the work we can bring into the world by collaborating across all disciplines in one place.” 

Meanwhile, Chris Howatson, Howatson+Company’s founder and CEO, shared that Hickey is the perfect strategy leader as she is a modern planner and empathic to all marketing disciplines, and understands how these marketing practices come together across the brand and customer experience.

“Her first career was in the police force as a crime scene photographer. What a way to start a career in understanding human behaviour,” said Howatson.

Most recently, Howatson+Company has also appointed Richard Shaw and Jeremy Hogg, former creative directors at CHE Proximity, to be its new executive creative directors, aimed at bolstering the agency’s creatives.

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Howatson+Company welcomes Richard Shaw, Jeremy Hogg as new ECDs

Sydney, Australia – Advertising agency Howatson+Company officially welcomes Richard Shaw and Jeremy Hogg as new executive creative directors of the agency. They will be joining current executive creative director Gavin Chimes in the agency lineup.

Prior to joining, Shaw and Hogg were creative directors at CHE Proximity, leading the creative output across multiple accounts including Samsung, Australia’s largest account consolidated within one agency. Their creative oversight spanned every aspect of their business including CX, media, data, tech, social, retail, brand and beyond.

Speaking about their appointments, the duo said, “We’ve had the good fortune to work with a whole bunch of people at Howatson+Company before. We couldn’t be more excited to be reunited with such remarkably clever and lovely humans. Add to that getting to work with all new faces like Levi and it feels like the sky is the limit.”

Meanwhile, Levi Slavin, chief creative officer at Howatson+Company, commented, “At Howatson+Company we have a commitment to very senior talent, on the tools. It means our clients benefit from creatives with deep experience, and the confidence to apply creativity to its most powerful effect. We’re delighted that Rich and Jez have joined with Gav, to maintain our philosophy and standard to our growing client list.”

He added, “There are no better creative partners than Rich and Jez. They care fiercely, which makes them perfect for Howatson+Co.”

The new appointments follow a number of recent senior appointments including Managing Director Renee Hyde, Chief Data and Technology Officer Hoang Nguyen, Head of Production Holly Alexander, and Managing Partner Rebecca Robertson.