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Alumni Feature: Matt Riley, Head of Brand, Over

We love following the career success of our Alumni!
Matt completed his Diploma in Marketing and Advertising Communications in 2003. And then went on to fulfill senior roles at companies/agencies such as Quirk, BBDO and Indiefin. He is currently the Head of Brand for Over.
This is what Matt had to say about his time with us:

  1. How has Red & Yellow contributed to shaping your career success?
    R&Y taught me to value a diverse set of inputs and perspectives when it comes to problem-solving. It also taught me that talk is cheap and doing is everything. Since graduation, I spent some time in the trenches at Ogilvy (both in SA and Uk) and then became a brand strategist who got into digital marketing very early (thanks to Rob Stokes). I’ve been the Strategy director and board member of BDDO South Africa, a Group Director and Senior Vice President of Behavioural strategy at BBDO New York (Americans love titles) where I lead the global Visa and Bacardi portfolios, and since returning back to SA I’m back in the digital world. I helped launch Sanlam’s Indiefin business and now head up Brand and Marketing at Over.
  2. What is the one thing that stands out from your time with us?
    We were treated like we were in the industry, not preparing for it. Real problems with real brands and sometimes tough feedback from real clients.
  3. What do you believe is critical for career success in the 21st Century?
    T shapes 🙂 Its critical to have not just a deep specialisation but be able to understand a lot of seemingly disconnected facets, and their data sources, of marketing, business and strategy in order to make connections no one else can see. Creativity will always trump automation, but you’ll need to be able to assimilate a lot more before you can be creative.
  4. What is your superpower?
    Giving people the confidence to be better at their jobs by showing them how good they can be.
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