WHAT WE DO

 SoloUnion creates strategic platforms and core creative ideas for brands. 

SoloUnion creates strategic and creative platforms for some of the world's brightest companies and brands - and offers a new business model for the industry.

 

Through our curated membership of top creative and strategic talent from South Africa and the world, SoloUnion is able to deliver experienced big idea solutions for brands and services. We can provide the best fit of expertise for the best strategic and creative solutions for the task at hand.

 

Best thing is, you get access to talent immediately. Did you know that in many big agencies, less than 20% of agency overheads go to paying for creative and strategy talent? With this model you not only get the heads without the overheads, you get the right heads, when you want them. We have no overheads.

 

Because of the inordinate amount of time we've spent honing our craft, we've got a team of experienced talent that can deliver great work, speedily.

 

We have a collective of recognized and awarded creatives who've won every award there is to win. Our strategists have experience in every category, globally, under the sun.

 

There's no big buildings, no fancy coffee, no late lunches and no juniors burning the midnight oil on your brief. Just the right creative and strategist, team, designer, and whatever else you need, for your particular brief.

 

Who do we want to work with? Our clients are the execs in the C-suite, brand owners, advertising agencies, in house agencies, consultancies, production houses. Anyone who needs a big powerful idea to build work off.

Want to know more? Contact us.

WHY WE DO IT

So, the agency model isn't delivering two things for marketers: 1. Value, and 2. Big Ideas.

There's a bunch of reasons for this, but we won't go into them here. Point is, the very thing that provides value (the big ideas) is being worked out the industry, leaving brands in a hole. Huge retainers, no big ideas, lots of tactical executions.

 

What we aim to do is to plug that gap - working between the brand owner and their existing agency, their in-house agency, or a production partner.

 

Note: we are not an agency. There is no account management, there is no traffic. You work with the people with the experience.

 

Why do we do it? Because we're good at it. Because we love it. Because we know it works. Because you need it.

 

The model offers project based strategic platforms and creative ideas for brands. Through the recruitment of top creative and strategic talent from South Africa and the world, SoloUnion is able to deliver fast, knowledgeable big idea solutions for brands and services that will provide the best expertise to come up with the best fast strategic and creative solutions.

 

Everything is led by an idea, not the medium.

 

We obsess with the idea of interesting. We know that every brand is fighting for territory. Everyone is doing the same thing how to break out of the clutter. (Did you know we are exposed to over 3000 messages in a 24 hour period?  Your sub-conscious screens out all but 76 of them, only 12 make any impact, and you (and your consumer) is not likely to remember more than 2 of them the next day. Source: The Case for Creativity, James Hurman)

 

 There’s only one thing that separates you from your competitors. Creativity. Owning something for your brand.

 

We don’t quit until we’ve succeeded.

 

 

HOW WE WORK

Hands off

Branding

We create the core strategic and creative brand idea which is handed over to our clients. They then get their AOR or in house agency to develop and implement the creative executions. It's not as difficult as it sounds. Most agencies respect and like working off a good idea.

Hands over

creative

We oversee the development of the campaign ideas and executions working with both client and agency. The role is one of an external Executive Creative Director and or/ Strategist. Agencies can be wary at first and then tend to respect that we are there to help the work, not ourselves.

hands on

content

We see the work all the way through to the creation of final assets. We will partner with handpicked companies we respect with the ability to physically produce the work to the highest quality.  

 
 

OUR TEAM

When you brief us, we hand pick the talent and the experience you need. We are still in the process of assembling a finite team; as it turns out, there is a LOT of great talent that wants to do real work, and not sit in status or board meetings all day. But, to whet your appetite, here's a glimpse of some of the people who have said yes to this new way of working. I'm sure you'll agree it's a pretty powerful team.

Truth is, the talent we (and you) have access to, is infinite. Tell us what you need, and we'll deliver. 

Rob Mc Lennan - Creative Lead
Creative Lead at Lowe Bull, JWT, FCB, Net#workBBDO, King James II, SoloUnion
Ranked 3 X No. 1 creative by the Creative Circle
AWARDS: 2 Cannes Lion Grand Prix, 36 Cannes Lions, Loerie Grand Prix’s and Gold’s, Creative Circle Ad of the Years, One Show’s, Clio’s and D&AD pencils.
Chairperson of the South African Creative Circle and 12 years Creative Circle exco
Judged Cannes Lion 3 times, twice at D&AD, Dubai Lynx and Loeries 15 times.President at Cannes Lion, Clio’s, Kenya APA
Gillian Rightford - Strategy Lead
Gillian’s CV is a mix of marketing, strategy, advertising, & leadership. She obtained a Business Science (Honours) degree in Marketing from UCT, worked for Perry & Associates (Marketing Strategy consulting), then headed into the creative world, doing account management and strategy for below and above the line agencies, before becoming Managing Director of Hercules/DMB&B, and then Group Managing Director of Lowe Bull. She started Adtherapy in 2007, to help marketers & agencies make better work.
Matthew Bull - Founder
Sanele Ngubane -  Creative
Sanele is the founder of Toasted Samish, an online based shop that supplies creative services in all South African languages, except English and Afrikaans.

He aims to tilt the balance of the scales when it comes to creative contributors in various industries, with a focus on advertising.

We aim to do this by making breakthrough communication in our languages, to compel our clients to speak the customers language more often, which will pave a way for new South African writers.
Juliet Honey - Creative
Annette de Klerk - Creative
Annette realised while she was studying design, that she liked words and ideas more than pictures. She did stick out the design degree but concepts and words are really what make her happier than a Kardashian at a Spanx sale.

She's won local and international awards and made some work I’m proud to show people – and some I’m not.
Melusi Shabalala - Writer
Mosidi Seretlo - Strategist
Stephanie - Strategist
Stephanie started as a junior planner at Ogilvy in Johannesburg, and went on to work in London’s top agencies for 12 years; including TBWA, Wieden & Kennedy’s London start-up, happydog Brand Consultancy where she was Head of Strategic Planning responsible for coaching and training programmes plus management of staff and projects and, lastly, as a Board Planning Director at AMV BBBO, the top London agency and consistent winner of Agency of the Year awards.
Sizakele Marutlulle - Strategist
Sizakele Marutlulle has over 23 years experience in the leadership, business architecture, brand building, innovation & people development universes.
She is a disruptive thinker, cultural creative, business architect, ideation activist and public speaker with experience across various sectors and geographies. She has the rare talent of having worked in the public and private sectors, with small and established businesses, as well as founding several ad agencies.
Brendan Jack - Creative
Writer, director, producer, online marketer, voice artist, comedy-monger, Creative Problem Solver.

After winning several international advertising awards while copywriting at one of the top 5 creative advertising agencies in the world, h co-created Crazy Monkey, a comedy troupe on MTV worldwide. My feature films include Straight Outta Benoni and Footskating 101. I’ve worked on freelance productions in England and Canada, done stand-up comedy at various events around South Africa and worked on s
Qingqile Mdlulwa - Creative Director
Qingqile is an Executive Creative Director, with 20 years’ experience.
He’s worked at FCB South Africa, Twist (a small agency in the Lowe Group), NetworkBBDO, Leo Burnett and FCB Activist.
He’s forged a reputation for producing quintessential South African campaigns for brands as diverse as Vodacom, FNB, Eskom, Chicken Licken, Cell C, Mercedes Benz and Nedbank.
He has served on all the major South African advertising industry bodies, including chairing the The Loerie Awards.
Ian Franks - Creative
FCO London. JWT Joburg, Moscow, Athens. Grey. Saatchi & Saatchi. DoG. Y&R. Recently omniscient freelancer across every continent and Brand possible.
Diagio. Matsushita. UNICEF. Nike. Reebok Pick n Pay. Clover Danone. P&G. Unilever. Land Rover. Mazda. BMW. Ford.

D&AD. Cannes. Andy’s, Clio’s. One Show. London International. Campaign Posters. New York Festivals. Sharks. Eagles. Loeries.
Jonathan Chappe de Leonval
Jon comes from a brand activation and experiential advertising background in creating innovative and exciting campaigns for many brands with over 30 years of experience in IMC design and implementation.
He has helped create big idea solutions for local and international brands, organisations and local government including Coca-Cola, Unilever, Virgin Mobile, 3M, Mr Price, Shell, SAB, Nandos The City of Tshwane and Durban Metro to name a few.
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CONTACT US

 

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Gillian Rightford - Strategy Lead

Gillian’s CV is a mix of marketing, strategy, advertising, & leadership. She obtained a Business Science (Honours) degree in Marketing from UCT, worked for Perry & Associates (Marketing Strategy consulting), then headed into the creative world, doing account management and strategy for below and above the line agencies, before becoming Managing Director of Hercules/DMB&B, and then Group Managing Director of Lowe Bull. She started Adtherapy in 2007, to help marketers & agencies make better work.

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