alistair mokoenaWe are proud to announce that Alistair Mokoena has been appointed Managing Director of Ogilvy & Mather Johannesburg.

Ally, as he is known to many, has spent the last two years at FCB Johannesburg where he served as Managing Director. He played an instrumental role in the turn around of the agency, which has experienced creative and commercial success this year.

A well-respected industry leader, Mokoena has held leadership positions at some of South Africa’s blue chip companies, including Unilever, South African Breweries, Mondelez and at Absa where he was head of marketing for the Retail & Business Bank.

“Ally has extensive integrated marketing experience from the both client and the agency side. His perspective will be invaluable to us as we adapt our model to service an ever changing integrated marketing landscape,” said Abey Mokgwatsane, Chief Executive Officer of Ogilvy & Mather South Africa.

Mokoena looks forward to joining the O&M family, saying, “I’ve spent 8 of my 17-year marketing career as a client of Ogilvy. I know the brand well and have huge admiration for its people and the work that they do. The Ogilvy team are like family to me and the opportunity to join them is an exciting one.”

Mokoena holds an MBA as well as a BComm and LLB degree from Rhodes University. He completed a Management Development Programme at UCT’s Graduate School of Business and is also a Chartered Marketer through The Marketing Association of South Africa.

In concluding, Mokgwatsane stated, “As we are constantly challenged by the changes in our industry, we ourselves need to look for the most dynamic people to help us shape the future of our business. We believe Ally fits the role perfectly and with us also announcing our merger with Gloo this week, it gives him an excellent opportunity to lead his Jo’burg team in creating an agency of the future.”

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The Ogilvy Internship Programme is a great chance to learn, and get to grips with how an agency works. You’ll gain untold experience and have the rare opportunity to learn from some of the most talented people at Ogilvy & Mather South Africa.

Applications for our 2015 intake are now open! To apply to be an intern at an O&M office here in South Africa, click here to download the application form.

Good luck!



#ogilvychange, Ogilvy & Mather’s behavioural sciences practice, launches in the country this week, offering clients a new perspective on building their brands with the latest thinking in cognitive and social psychology combined with Ogilvy’s communications expertise.

Ogilvy & Mather’s behavioural science practice, #ogilvychange, will further expand its global footprint yet again this month; this time in South Africa.

A frenetic consumer culture has caused brands to market their products with little regard given to the number of decisions customers make on a continuous basis in today’s modern world.

Since launching in London in 2012, #ogilvychange has striven to restore the balance, combining the gravitas of leading research in cognitive psychology and behavioural economics with the communication expertise of the Ogilvy & Mather Group (O&M). #ogilvychange melds a team of creative marketing architects with an active community of behavioural science experts, including leading academics. The result is a duo that makes for valuable and actionable insights that can translate into the real world, to real people and to real behavioural change — influencing people’s behaviors and, finally, their purchasing decisions.

Led by long time behavioural economics champion, co-founder of #ogilvychange and Vice Chairman of O&M UK, Rory Sutherland believes that if there is one commonality between marketers and neo-classical economists, it’s that they have both become so preoccupied with the model of “how people should decide” that they completely neglect to ask the most pertinent question: “how do they actually decide?”. This has resulted in a seemingly impassable gulf between marketing theory and practice, creating a disingenuous disconnect between brands and their consumers.

“Recent academic studies in cognitive psychology, social psychology and behavioural economics suggest that over 90% of our decision-making is conducted somewhat unconsciously and automatically on a daily basis. That’s where we fit in — using behavioural science practices to change consumer behaviour. Simply put, we take little ideas from big thinkers that solve big behavioural problems,” says Sutherland.

Ogilvy & Mather South Africa’s Group Strategy Director, Neo Makhele, is excited to bring this future-focused thinking into the South African marketing mix, “Our clients are constantly looking for ways to improve their bottom line and, as their marketing partners, we need to ensure that this happens for them as the market changes. With the advances #ogilvychange is making abroad, it just makes sense for us to bring this to the South African shores.”

Along with Sutherland and Jez Groom, Co-Founder of #ogilvychange and Group Strategy Director of O&M UK, Makhele will oversee the practice in the South Africa. In addition, and to introduce the practice to current clients, O&M will host exclusive workshops over the next few days, faciliated by both Sutherland and Groom.

For more Little Ideas from Big Thinkers visit or follow @ogilvychange on Twitter.

We are pleased to announce that our ‘Kevin’ TVC (directed by Keith Rose of Velocity Films), won a Gold Loerie Award this past weekend, hot on the heels of a Clio shortlist and a Bronze Lion at Cannes earlier this year.

Mariana O’Kelly, joint ECD of Ogilvy & Mather Johannesburg says, “The ad makes people realise how easy it is to get pills for any lifestyle illness they can possibly have. But there are 3 million people living with HIV, who need only one ARV pill a day to survive, and who can’t get it. We wanted people who recognize themselves in Kevin, to step out of their comfort zone to help get the pills that really matter to those that really need them,”

Although ‘Kevin’ was originally created for the Topsy Foundation, the organisation has since redefined itself, and is no longer directly involved in the treatment of HIV/AIDS.

Topsy has therefore donated the ad to their Gauteng-based counterpart, the Witkoppen Health + Welfare Centre, and the TVC will begin flighting again under this new banner in coming weeks. To donate R10 to the Witkoppen Health + Welfare Centre, SMS “Witkoppen” to 38810.

Topsy’s new focus is on the care of orphaned and vulnerable children, their families, and communities affected by HIV/AIDS. To help their cause, visit

DStv’s new brand positioning “Feel every moment” was launched in July this year, with authentic stories that showcase DStv’s ability to create moments of connection between people.

This work is based on our observation of real moments of intimacy that happen between people when watching DStv. In the most recent installment of our campaign, we showcase DStv’s ability to bond a father and his young son, in their competitive enjoyment of a boxing match; in addition to providing two sisters with an opportunity to let their dancing divas shine.

Rhino poaching is, tragically, a growth industry. And when each rhino horn is worth more than a living rhino, this is unlikely to change unless we act to change it.

That is why the Castle Lager Boucher Legacy wants everyone to come together to place every rhino in safe hands.

Using the Rhino DNA Index System project, run by the VGL lab based in Onderstepoort, the CLBL want to DNA profile every individual rhino in South Africa. This will provide a powerful disincentive to poachers as every horn can be traced back to its source. This technology has already been used to put poachers behind bars, with the system being used in cases of rhino poaching already. They have already tagged 616 rhino and want to extend this protection to all South African rhinos and, hopefully, beyond South Africa’s borders.

Finding, tagging and profiling a rhino costs on average R10 000 ($1000) per rhino, so they cannot hope to achieve this goal without your help.

What started as a proactive idea by Ogilvy & Mather Johannesburg for SAB Miller Castle Lager, become a multi-million production, of which most has been donated or sponsored by various well-known South African celebrities, post production houses, animation houses and audio houses. In addition, Coldplay donated the use of their master recording and publishing rights to their song, “Paradise”.

This World Rhino Day, the 22nd of September, come together to add your voice to the call for donations. Because together, we can place all our rhino in safe hands.

Make a donation by SMSing ‘Rhino’ to 48800 to donate R10.

Add your support by donating your social media reach to our Thunderclap now.

What’s Thunderclap, you ask?
Thunderclap is a tool that lets a message be heard when you and your friends say it together. Think of it as an “online flash mob.” Join a Thunderclap, and you and others will share the same message at the same time, spreading an idea through Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr that cannot be ignored. So for instance, if you donate your reach and you have 1400 followers on Twitter and 600 friends on Facebook, all 2000 of them will receive our message at exactly the same time!

To find out even more or to donate online, visit The Castle Lager Boucher Legacy.


Executive Creative Director: Neo Mashigo
Creative Director: Molefi Thulo
Copywriter: Tanna Goott
Art Director: Rita-Marie Ludicke
TV Producer: Esme de Miranda
Business Director: Marc Crerar
Account Director: Eliah Chauke

OgilvyOne: Marc Ratcliffe, Danielle Timmins, Brigitte Le Roux, Justin Oswald & Nicholas Wittenberg
Ogilvy Public Relations: Nick Bedford, Devon Hooper & Kirsty Ballard

Productions House: Egg Films
Director: Sunu Gonera
Executive Producers: Colin Howard & Kerry Hosford
Producer (On Set): Julia Schnurr

Music – Publishing Rights: UNIVERSAL Music Publishers - Gavin Green
Music – Master Rights: WARNER Music – Prebashness Seesunker

Stock Footage: SA TOURISM – Ian Utermohlen
Margi Sheard supplied the hi-res footage at no cost for transfers.

Behind The Scenes: Burley Boys – Daryl Burley



Help a group of of South African township kids to amplify their voices through creativity!

We are very excited to share this project with you, but firstly, we’d like to provide you with some context:

At the beginning of this year, Umuzi Photo Club launched “The Power of 50″, an innovative 12-month programme aimed at helping talented young people become the next generation of creative professionals. Umuzi is a youth development organization that works with young people in under-resourced communities to create socially informative multimedia, which inspires engaged citizenry, youth activism, and change.

The programme combines essential artistic skills with on-the-job training and offers placement opportunities within the professional, creative industry for all graduates… and this is where Ogilvy comes in. Our creative team has had the pleasure of mentoring and guiding 5 of the talented 50 through a live brief and pitch process. These are the incredible results:

socks Hello. 

Our names are Sithembiso, Simangele, Obakeng,Tebogo and Lucky. 

20140812054615-SITH 20140812055532-SIMANGELE 20140812055612-OBAKENG 20140812055634-TEBOGO 20140813045302-LUCKY_PIC

Towards the end of last year we were hand-picked to study at a tertiary institute that recognises creative ability in kids from underprivileged communities around South Africa – kids who would never have had access to that type of education. Or any type of education, most probably.

We’re a group of budding photographers and one graphic designer, and as an assignment we were tasked with creating an exhibition that reframes and visualises South African youth.  When we were brainstorming creative ideas, we never imagined that it would turn into a business idea. But here we are. 

We’ve spent the last few weeks taking photographs that give insight into the youth. Into us. Now we’re busy translating these photos into graphic designs for a range of socks that we’re hoping to produce. 

The creative thought behind the project is that people generally have a very negative perception about the youth. We want to challenge that perception by asking people to quite literally, put themselves in our socks.

We’ve been in contact with some sock manufacturers and it seems like the smallest run of socks that we can do per sock design is 250. To produce one design each (that being five designs in total) we’re in for about ZAR50 000 (or roughly $5000). We figure that if we manage to cover this initial outlay then we can produce the other designs with the profit that we make from the sales of our first run. It’s going to be awesome; we can feel it in our feet.

Please help us achieve this by going to our indiegogo page and donating what you can.

This idea might not change the whole world. But it will change a small part of it. The part that we live in. And right now, it ain’t the greatest part. It’s a place where people, our neighbours, some of our families, treat us like pariahs because we go to school and hope that one day we will make a little more of our lives than they have.

Forgive the drama but this could be our way out.

Like all new products on the market, we suppose we run the risk of not moving our stock. The great thing about this project is that even if we don’t make sales, we’re still making art.

If you can’t help with good ol’ greenbacks then please use the Indiegogo share tools to tell other people about Seeks Sock Co. Also, if you find yourself in the vicinity of Johannesburg on the 23rd of October come to our exhibition. We’ll keep y’all posted on the details. 

To donate on indiegogo or share the link with friends, click here. Yes, right here.

Follow The Seeks Socks Co. on Twitter & Like The Seeks Socks Co. on Facebook.

David Ogilvy Pipe

By Jonathan Wai

“In the modern world of business, it is useless to be a creative, original thinker unless you can also sell what you create. Management cannot be expected to recognize a good idea unless it is presented to them by a good salesman.” — David Ogilvy

So advised “The Father of Advertising,” who had many jobs before founding Ogilvy & Mather, the famous advertising firm. He was a chef in Paris, a door-to-door salesman, a farmer, a social worker in the slums, and even conducted research in the movie industry — all of which taught him valuable lessons on how to sell.

He details his life adventures in “Confessions of an Advertising Man,” and even devotes one section on advice to the young. From this work, I have distilled six tips on how to rise to the top.

1. Be ambitious. But don’t let it show.

“After watching the careermanship of my own employees for 14 years, I have identified a pattern of behavior which leads rapidly to the top,” Ogilvy writes. “First, you must be ambitious, but you must not be so nakedly aggressive that your fellow workers rise up and destroy you. Tout soldat pone dans sa giberne le baton de marechal. Yes, but don’t let it stick out.”

2. Make work your hobby. 

In “My Life In Advertising,” the great advertising pioneer Claude Hopkins confessed: “I have always been an addict to work. I love work as other men love play.” Ogilvy also thought your work should be your hobby. In fact, he believed that making yourself an authority on a subject that your company knew very little about was a key to success.

For example, if your topic was gasoline, he recommended that you read books on the “chemistry, geology, and distribution of petroleum products,” as well as all the trade journals and research reports. You should then spend your weekend actually pumping gas at the service stations and talking with customers to learn their perspective. He advised that by doing this work, you would become more knowledgeable about this topic than your boss, and then would be prepared to succeed him.

“Most of the young [people] in agencies are too lazy to do this kind of homework. They remain permanently superficial.”

3. Work twice the number of hours as everyone else.

Ogilvy and Hopkins clearly made their work their lives, and they invested more hours than their colleagues. Hopkins, for example, “attributed his success to the fact that he worked twice as long hours as other copywriters, and thus made his way up the ladder at twice their speed.” Ogilvy notes: “In my bachelor days I used to work until the small hours. If you prefer to spend all your spare time growing roses or playing with your children, I like you better, but do not complain that you are not being promoted fast enough. Managers promote [those] who produce the most.”

Although Larry Page and Sergey Brin have recently discussed how workweeks could be shorter for many people, the Google heads themselves probably work more hours than most people are capable of. Putting in longer hours over a long stretch of time likely multiplies your output, like compound interest, and can also help you clock the estimated 10,000 hours you need to become an expert.

4. Use your vacations effectively. For example, read a book per day.

Ogilvy believed that one of the most revealing signs about a young person’s capacity is how they made use of their vacations. “Some fritter away those precious three weeks, while some get more out of them than all the rest of the year put together.” He offers some tips:

  • Don’t stay at home and putter around the house. You need a change of scene.
  • Take your [partner], but leave the children with a neighbor… Shut yourself off from exposure to advertising.
  • Take a sleeping pill every night for the first three nights.
  • Get plenty of fresh air and exercise.
  • Read a book every day — 21 books in three weeks.
  • Broaden your horizons by going abroad… But don’t travel so much that you come back cross and exhausted.

5. Start as a specialist. This is the way to make your mark.

Ogilvy notes that most of the able young people who came into agencies (in 1963) were determined to be ad executives, most likely because this was what they were taught to value in business school. And yet, the heads of the six largest ad agencies in the world were all specialists, and none were account executives. Four were copywriters and one each in media and research.

“It is much more difficult to make your mark as an account executive than as a specialist, because it is rare for an account executive to have an opportunity to cover himself with glory; almost all the spectacular triumphs are performed by the specialists,” he said.

He felt that by specializing, the competition would be less, there would be more opportunities to rise above routine work, and one would acquire expertise which would ensure security, both psychological and financial.

6. Committees don’t lay the golden eggs.

In 1963, Ogilvy wrote: “Nowadays it is the fashion to pretend that no single individual is ever responsible for a successful advertising campaign. This emphasis on ‘team-work’ is bunkum — a conspiracy of the mediocre majority. No advertisement, no commercial, and no image can be created by a committee. Most top managements are secretly aware of this, and keep their eyes open for those rare individuals who lay golden eggs.”

Joshua Wolf Shenk recently argued in the New York Times that “the lone genius is a myth that has outlived its usefulness,” and instead advocated for the idea of a creative network or collaborative approach. Apparently 50 years later, the emphasis on collaboration and teamwork continues to be popular. But Ogilvy argued that creativity comes from the mind of the individual.

Article via - Jonathan Wai, Ph.D., is a psychologist, writer, and research scientist at the Duke University Talent Identification Program.