All posts by Jason Gemenis

Welcome To The World Of The Individual

Demographics Are Dead: Welcome To The World Of The Individual 

Since the mid 20th Century, consumer targeting meant broadcasting out to a specific group of people based on gender, age, and location. Yet in 2017, data collection is far more intricate, and those brackets that we use to define and group people are now far too broad. Is it time for communicators to stop generalising markets, and shift our focus to the individual?

People no longer define themselves within one set of beliefs in the way we did 30 years ago. We have evolved to accept every facet of our personalities, and have multiple defining characteristics beyond our ethnic background, location, religious beliefs or even age. The only way to successfully market to the people of the future, is to get to know them beyond basic demographics and look further into their personality type, habits, and opinions.

Only a few years ago, people began to grow extremely uncomfortable with the amount of data that platforms, such as a Facebook, had on them. Yet it seems more and more widely accepted now that we all carry a complex digital footprint, and in that footprint is everything any brand needs to know about us. Many successful brands follow people on their daily interactions with digital media – from the minute they wake up to the minute they go to sleep. Marketing to the individual based on their digital data is a guaranteed way to increase brand awareness, whether your audience likes it or not. This retargeting model and its breach on privacy is another conversation, but we need acknowledge that when it comes to brand awareness, this method of individual marketing is a stepping stone in getting to know your consumer.

You’re probably thinking that this method of individual consumer targeting can’t possibly work for every brand – and you’re right. Keep in mind that data is power. Not all brands need social media and retargeting to reach their consumer, but all brands do need that vital information on their audience. Think about it in terms of the friends you have on Facebook; you may have never met someone, but based on their daily Facebook activity clogging your newsfeed, you can probably tell exactly what, why, and when they’d buy. Yet from a marketing perspective, this person is probably defined as ’50-65, woman, Eastern Suburbs’.

Let’s get personal. Look beyond classic defining characteristics and get to know your consumer on a deeper level. Consumers are getting smarter, so if we can respect our consumer as an individual with distinctive opinions and beliefs, then we can build a trusting relationship between brand and audience. (Even if achieving that personal relationship means digging deep in data).

By Keira Scurry (Bachelor of Advertising and Media student)

The Power of Art Direction

A picture is worth 1,000 words

As an art director, you’re in charge of the imagery and layout of an ad all together. You need to make sure that the message you want the audience to receive is portrayed correctly. A well-known fact related to advertising is the “6 second impact”, where you only have 6 seconds of attention from the audience while they’re going through their day. This relates especially to outdoor advertising. If a person is walking down a street and walks by a bus shelter with an ad on it, you only have 6 seconds of their attention. Therefore, you shouldn’t have lots of copy on it that the audience won’t have time to read in such a short amount of time. That’s where the saying “6 words, 6 seconds” comes from, or even better: no words at all.

The phrase “a picture is worth 1,000 words” is developed from an even older saying which is “one look is worth a thousand words.” It appeared in a 1913 newspaper advertisement for the Piqua Auto Supply House of Piqua, Ohio, but ironically uses only words, not images, to invite prospective customers to see its products in their store. The point of it being how instead of explaining all its features and printing photos of every angle, one look at it with your own eyes will say it all. I think both phrases are nice references to how we only have the audience’s attention for a short amount of time, and how that time can be well spent with viewing instead of reading.

Take these great Lego ads for example. All it needs is an image with a strong impact and the product’s logo. Never underestimate your audience’s ability to figuring things out on their own. They don’t need a few sentences explaining the joke. They could have had a clever tagline under the imagery saying something about how great children’s imagination is, but they chose not to, and it made the ad so much better. Without any words to read, you reach out to so many more people as we all have got the time to simply look at the image. It also helps that the logo is well recognizable. The ad also possesses bright, playful colors to catch their attention even more. The art director or creative person behind these posters is a genius in my eyes, I wish I had come up with this idea myself.

This ad for Scotch tape is another image dominant ad that I find very clever. It is so self-explanatory and it also consists of only an image and the logo for the product. There is also Scotch’s slogan underneath their logo which they don’t even needed to ad for us to understand their message.

A picture really is worth more than a thousand words in the advertising industry, and image dominant advertising creates the cleverest ideas and are easily remembered. Here are some more examples to prove my point:

By Charlotte Leite Hansen (Bachelor of Digital Media student)

Digital Design Goes “Hands On” with Positive Education

Macleay College is the only Australian Higher Education institution running a Positive Education program. As well as teaching our students industry based skills and practical theory, we also address their personal development and mental health through positive psychology.

This holistic approach in learning, is aimed at enriching the student’s wellbeing and emotional intelligence through tailored individual support and encouragement.

It gives the student a better understanding of themselves, their passions, their strengths and their goals. It helps them to better manage their life, relationships and  future careers through a greater understanding and use of empathy, gratitude and other positive emotions.

In a nutshell, the program aims to increase the student’s confidence, sense of wellbeing and happiness.

As part of the program, Macleay College has installed PosEd Kits in many of the classrooms across our Sydney and Melbourne campuses and students in the Digital Design Unit have been putting them to good use in Term One of the Advertising & Digital Media course.

One of our tasks was to take the free VIA Character Strength Test. This is a short ten minute assessment that takes students through a series of questions to determine their top character strengths. Armed with this list, the students are then asked to step away from their iMacs and use their hands to construct or draw visual representations of their favourite strengths.

The PosEd Kits are full of great stuff to get them started like Play Doh, feathers, buttons, coloured fabric, wood and paper. There are also ample large rolls of paper and Sharpies.

To begin with, the students had a lot of questions and curious looks. As they started to move around the room and choose their materials the noise levels increased and they were off and running.  There were lots of comparing notes on each other’s different strengths with most agreeing that the VIA Test had done a good job.

As I moved around the group, there were some initial awkwardness with speaking about their strengths but they were encouraged to start thinking beyond that and  how their personal brand could be visualised into an abstract object or pictorial form.

There was a sense of enjoy in the room so I popped on some music and spent the next hour watching their creations unfold. The next part of the workshop was to take their physical objects and turn them into a digital piece of artwork. The students could take photos, load them up into Illustrator and use this as a template to create a kind of personal logo.

This was the first time I’ve been involved in a workshop like this so there  is some tweaking I’d still like to do but it was one of the most enjoyable sessions I’ve run. It was  one of those days when you get home, put your feet up and smile!

Jason Gemenis is Macleay’s Digital Ninja
lecturing in Digital Design, Advanced
Digital Design and Visualisation across Macleay’s
Dip Advertising & Media, Dip Digital Media,
BA Advertising & Media & BA Digital Media.

And the Winners for 2016 are…

We are proud to announce the winners of the Advertising & Media Showcase Awards for 2016 for the best student work from the advertising and media diploma and bachelor students at Macleay College in both Sydney and Melbourne. Well done guys!

As part of Macleay College’s Hype End of Year Showcase held in December last year, the 2016 Advertising & Digital Media Faculty Awards where handed out to students that achieved the highest grades for their work throughout the year.

And the winners for 2016 are…

Best Print Ad: Michael Lamb “One Pair of Sneakers” Converse Shoes

Best Typographical Poster: Teresa Solaese “Dachshund”

Best Photographic Project: Chloe Geggus “Savvy Brides” Bridal Dresses

Best Copywriting: Daniel Koublachvili “Link 4 Change” Children’s Charity

Best Outdoor Campaign: Rowan Slade “You’re Not That Guy” Gun Control Campaign

Best Radio Commercial: Brooke Demenezes “Gymbaroo” Child Care

Best Video: Cassandra Sabin “One for One” Tom’s Roasting Company

Best Video: Caitlin Thomas “Super-Tough” Dr. Martens Boots

Best Social Media Project: Ellen Rafferty, Michael Lamb & Aislin Mcleod “Social Studio”

Best Marketing Plan: Daniel Fitzsimmons “Chanel”

Best Cross-Media Campaign: Alicia Sanarko “All Eyes on You” Chevrolet Corvette

Best Portfolio: Cassandra Sabin

Graduating Class of 2016 ‘Feel the Hype’ at their Final Showcase

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Macleay’s Advertising and Media Diploma graduating class of 2016 came together with friends and family to celebrate 12 months of hard work.

Joined by academic and support staff, alumni and industry professionals, the night was themed, organised and run by the students as part of their final term project.

The students were given a budget and asked to prepare their end of year creative portfolios of video, radio, outdoor, digital  and print campaign works, along with a major piece which took centre stage on the night.

In addition to celebrating the students and their work we were joined by three industry experts who judged the best work presented.

The three exceptional judges: Chantal Abouchar, Grant Flannery and Will Edwards have diverse experience in the fields of Advertising and Media. Working in very different industries and with areas of expertise spanning creative, entrepreneurship and digital, the judges were happy to share their knowledge and advice with our Advertising students.

Congratulations to the 2016 graduates on an hugely enjoyable and successful event. We will be keeping a keen eye on your new careers in advertising and media and we wish you all the best.

Thanks for sharing the hype!

Not bad for just a couple of years out of college! #MadeatMacleay

AdGrad Kean Edwards has just scored a great job as Senior UX Designer at AnalogFolk in London. We caught up with him for a quick chat after he landed the role…


“I’m a digital native with a passion for user centred design. Recently moving from Sydney to London, I help businesses reach objectives and create usable experiences people love”.


“I’m a client facing User Experience Architect with a broad spectrum of skills from user research, experience strategy & UX design. I am motivated by a fast paced, collaborative environment, focused on creating user centred solutions.”

Congratulation from all of us at Macleay College and the AdBare team! We wish you ever success in your new role.

Kean Edwards’ Portfolio:

Find out more about Advertising at Macleay…

AdNews features Macleay Graduate Daniel Cutrone #MadeatMacleay


Daniel Cutrone thought he wanted to get into creative, but after graduating from Macleay College he’s found the sweet spot between creativity and science in the media world as head of investment at Match Media.

I always wanted to get into creative. Growing up I was always fascinated by the advertising industry, judging what I deemed to be smart creative messaging. After finishing school I looked into getting an education in marketing and landed a place at Macleay College.

To get my foot in the door I called all the top creative agencies, applied for all the entry-levels roles available, but I wasn’t getting anywhere. One of the students I studied with had landed a media assistant role and it was through those connections that I found myself in my first role at UM. At the time I still wanted a creative role and hoped I could do a sideways step into a creative agency, but after a few months I really started to enjoy media strategy and implementation and my dreams of working in a creative agency became a distant memory.

I’ve been head of investment at Match Media for just over six months and I get to work with a passionate, motivated and ambitious leadership team that keeps its values and vision close to its heart. I love the people, the pace of change, negotiations, the strategies and the implementation of plans within media, but it’s the sweet spot of creativity and science behind media plans that I underestimated. I found myself swept up in a role which gave me ambitious targets to achieve, opportunities to negotiate and trade, creative thinking and sophisticated tools to develop communication plans.

While I was at Macleay College I got a complete picture of the industry, including creative, legal, media, planning, production, so I gained a pretty good understanding of where media sat in the eyes of our clients.

Media and advertising is becoming the lifeblood of many major companies today. It is replacing the front door or bricks and mortar locations and therefore playing a much more active role for businesses. Today media provides more tangible business outcomes than ever before, when the change of a website or an outcome of a negotiation can impact ROI. It’s an exciting time to work in media.

Find out more about Advertising & Media at Macleay