by Herman Manson (@marklives) Today, we reveal which agency South Africa’s ad execs consider the most digitally integrated in the country.

Every year since 2012, MarkLives has been polling South Africa’s top agency leaders to find out what they think of their competitors, whom they see as effective managers and great creatives, and where they believe their future competition is likely to come from. First we announced the 2015 regional results from Cape Town, and last week we announced the 2015 regional results from Johannesburg. This week is dedicated to national results.

  • Monday: Most-admired agency bosses
  • Tuesday: Most-admired creative directors
  • Wednesday: Most-admired agency
  • Thursday: One to watch
  • Today: Most digitally-integrated

Regional polls recap

Johannesburg: Last week, we announced Gloo@Ogilvy as the most digitally integrated agency. Publicis Machine and FCB Africa have both been named contenders.

Cape Town: Here, Ogilvy & Mather Cape Town has been named the most digitally integrated agency. The contenders are Publicis Machine and King James Group.


The most digitally integrated ad agency in South Africa

Ogilvy & Mather South Africa

Ogilvy & Mather Johannesburg exterior

What with the results for the regional polls in this category, it comes as little surprise for Ogilvy & Mather South Africa to be named the most digitally integrated agency in the country.

Gloo@Ogilvy represents the integration of agencies Gloo (which Ogilvy acquired in late 2014) and OgilvyOne in Johannesburg. The combined agency enjoyed a number of new business wins in 2015, including PEP Loyalty and Digital Marketing, Barloworld (licence holders for Caterpillar), BP Castrol including its Bloodhound Sponsorship, Sun International, Skip (Unilever), Gumtree, Nestle, Virgin Active and Coca Cola (Fanta, Sprite, Schweppes, Stoneys, Fuse, Bonaqua, Valpre, Powerplay, Just Juice, Vitamin Water and Powerade). The agency also enjoyed organic growth from clients Vodacom and KFC.

Says Ogilvy Cape Town MD, Luca Gallarelli:  “Integration is definitely working. Our specialisations are developing incredibly well, with capabilities that I believe are setting the benchmark in the industry. The specialists are winning on independent business and integrating well on shared business.

“We’re not resting, though, and continuing to evolve some processes to continue to fine-tune our approach. It’s a never-ending endeavor and one we’re committed to continuing to get better at.”


In 2014, 2013 and 2012, Ogilvy & Mather Cape Town took this title.


The contenders

Publicis Machine logoFCB Africa logo squareKing James Group logo square

Publicis Machine, FCB Africa and King James Group


How the poll works

Towards the end of 2015, agency leaders were invited to nominate their most-admired ad agency, the most-admired creative director and the most-admired ad agency boss. We also asked them which agency did the best at digital integration and which agency they saw as the one to watch in the future. Nobody could nominate his or her own agency or staff members. All the nominations were then tallied up for the final result.

Note: Runner-up(s) will only be named if they achieved a good nomination tally relative to the winner’s position. Contenders are named if they stood out significantly above other nominees, but weren’t able to close in on the winner’s tally.

See previous national poll results:


Herman Manson 2105Herman Manson (@marklives) is the founder and editor of He was the inaugural Vodacom Social Media Journalist of the Year in 2011 and has, over his 20-year-plus career, contributed to numerous journals and websites in South Africa and abroad, including AdVantage magazine, Men’s Health, Computer World and African Communications.

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