J. Walter Thompson Melbourne has further extended its offer and added significant firepower to its front bench via the appointments of a leading data-driven marketing expert, and one of the industry’s most qualified social media practitioners.
Effective immediately, Catherine Graham joins the agency as director of customer experience, charged with integrating data and its use organically through the organisation to drive stronger outcomes for clients.
In addition, Brie Stewart joins as the agency’s creative director of content to help ensure every idea developed is born out of true social insight and understanding.
J. Walter Thompson Melbourne MD Michael Godwin said the appointments were part of an “ongoing strategy of investing in new capabilities that complement our core offer”.
“This approach has helped transform our business to be one of the more diversified in this market, providing clients a range of best in class specialist skill-sets across multiple disciplines, all woven seamlessly through the agency – one business, one brand, one bottom line, and one integrated team,” he explained.
“Catherine and Brie’s appointments are an exciting next step in this journey that will provide clients access to a level of experience in CX/CRM and content marketing/social that few in the country can rival.
“Very importantly, they’re both fabulous teachers – leaders who enjoy mentoring others, which is key to us ensuring their skills and experience are transferred across our organisation.
“They will be highly valued client partners and members of our Melbourne management team.”
A highly experienced CRM specialist with a career that includes roles in Australia, the UK and Asia, Graham was most recently at TBWA Worldwide, as director of customer engagement.
During her career she has partnered such clients as Volvo, American Express, Pernod Ricard, Telstra, ANZ, Myer, Nestle and Mercedes Benz.
Speaking of her decision to join JWT, Graham said: “Bucking the trend of isolating such specialists ‘in the corner’, what attracted me to JWT is a model that will see my role positioned at the agency’s heart, helping to embed a customer experience philosophy across every single client and democratising data within the organisation at large.
“Instead of using data purely for performance measurement and reporting, we will be using it to unlock customer insight and business intelligence, promoting better strategy and more effective ideas.”
Stewart, who describes herself as being ‘part creative director, part account person and part strategist’ was until recently the head of channel transformation at Clemenger Melbourne and prior to this, she was national head of social at Ogilvy Australia.
“Too often, there’s a degree of separation for roles such as mine from creative development process, whereas at JWT I’ll be engaged throughout the strategy and ideation phases,” she said.
“The logical benefit of such a structure is the role of social and content is considered from the very start, ensuring every idea has a true social ‘heartbeat’, which is what modern, relevant brands require.”
The appointments come shortly after JWT Melbourne confirmed it had made a number of staff redundant following a review of client demand against its resources.