The ‘intrepreneur’ generation: PMW 30 Under 30 winners announced

Builders, change-makers, innovators… and revenue generators. The rising stars of performance marketing are transforming companies and cultures from the inside out. Meet all the winners of PMW’s first young professionals awards.

The ‘intreprenuer’ generation: PMW 30 Under 30 winners announced

Performance Marketing World today announces the winners of its international competition to celebrate the rising stars in the industry.

The awards were set up to recognise the work of breakthrough talent aged 30 years and under in the performance marketing industry.

Winners include agency founders, platform developers and SEO gurus, singled out for their contributions towards exceeding company goals and instigating positive change within their teams. 

Due to the cross-border nature of the sector, entrants could apply to be recognised as one the ‘30 under 30’ from around the world alongside an extra award to celebrate four ‘newcomers’ to highlight those ones to watch at the very start of their career. 

Commenting on the results, Robin Langford, Premium Content Editor at Performance Marketing World, said: “From our travels meeting key players in the industry, one thing that has struck the PMW team is how young many of the team members are; and the dynamism and creativity they bring. 

“From programmatic ads to influencer campaigns, performance marketing is itself a relatively youthful industry, and that is reflected in the workforce. Today’s winners reflect that hugely encouraging trend.”  

The list was selected by an esteemed panel of high profile judges from diverse parts of the industry. The full list includes:

  • Keval Shah, Head of Marketing, Beko plc 

  • Jim Hawker, CMO, Threepipe Reply 

  • Tom Howe, Group Managing Partner, Jefferson Talent Group 

  • Eniola Ogunbanwo, Senior Partnerships Manager, TopCashback 

  • Joshna Rughani, Head of Digital Marketing, Artfinder 

  • Joanna Lyall, UK CEO, Brain Labs 

  • Catriona Woodward, Director, Global Martech, Pizza Hut 

  • Liz Emery, Senior Director, Mobile + Ad Tech Solutions, Tinuiti 

  • Guido Ampollini, Founder & Head of Performance, GA Agency 

  • Stéphane Kurower, Digital Marketing Relationship Manager, Willis Towers Watson 

  • Freddy Kanter, Digital Growth Manager, GSK 

  • David Fieldhouse, CRO, Adimo 

  • Miroslav Rozenberg, Marketing Manager, Probinex.

Budding ‘intrepreneurs’

Awards judge Joanna Lyall, UK CEO of Brainlabs, praised the calibre of the participants, pointing out how many of these younger staff members had not only excelled beyond their marketing goals but also led transformative projects within their organisations. 

"Reading through all the entries it was clear that there is an abundance of brilliant young talent in our industry,” Lyall commented. “I particularly noticed the number of entrants who had brought an ‘intrepreneurial’ approach to their business by innovating and being relentless in growing business from the ground up. The entries were packed full of ambition and a real commitment to doing great work for their clients. Congratulations to all of the winners!"

The 34 winners… and the launch of a new interview series

A full list of winners is provided below. In-depth interviews with each of the winners will be released over the coming weeks as part of a new editorial series. Subscribe to PMW’s daily or weekly bulletins for further updates.

The 30 Under 30 Awards go to:

Isabelle Bagge, Senior Client Success Manager, Amobee

Since joining as a graduate, Isabelle’s diligence has achieved award-winning results for Amobee’s Stokke account. In 2021 she took ownership of the AirBnB account, and made it the most cost-effective account in EMEA, seeing 960% growth YoY and displaying attributes required over the whole industry: integrity, accountability and openness.

Megan Beatty, Senior Director, Digital Strategy, Media.Monks B.V.

Achieving a 100% individual client retention rate over the last seven years, Megan has broken records for achieving the highest revenue driven by one individual at Media.Monks. Having taken her paid media unit from the youngest one in the company to the largest one (22% of company revenue), she’s built a team that challenges the shortcomings of corporate America regarding the use of PTO and mental health days.

Lucy Bradford, Business Manager, Found

Lucy excelled in identifying a gap and becoming a driving force in upselling affiliate marketing, achieving impressive revenues from a new agency service offering. She played a vital role in achieving Google’s recognition as a top 5% agency for PPC and her commercially-minded skills drive efficiency throughout the agency, removing the need for manual reporting, saving time for specialist teams.

Chinelle Brandford, Biddable Account Director, MediaHub WW

Chinelle leads a team which have all been promoted in the last 12 months. Since managing the Clarins account, their investment has grown 218% between 2020 and 2021, tripling the budgets across social, amid the height of the pandemic where they saw social budgets for many brands decrease.

Sam Crocker, Director, Sales EMEA, Impact.com

Sam has grown EMEA revenue more than fourfold since joining impact.com – resulting in the new business team in the UK growing exponentially, from four to 17 people with a 400% increase in three and a half years. Passionate about advancing partnership marketing, Sam helped secure the team $150 million in funding, bringing impact.com’s valuation to $1.5 billion – and making it the first partnership management platform provider to reach this milestone.

Amelia Currie, Senior Programmatic Lead, Merkle

After creating her own role at Merkle combining coding and programmatic, Amelia has written algorithms decreasing CPAs by 42% and increased quality traffic by 84% versus Google’s native algorithm. Creating the Brand Safety Hub and conceptualising reporting tools, her scripts and solutions save her teams seven hours a week per client.

Abigail Dunne, Senior Paid Search Manager, iCrossing UK

Abigail’s results laden her with success. She saved a client impressive sums in branded search spend since July 2020, built a strategy that tapped into Google’s new structure driving +34% revenue growth YoY and streamlined optimisation KPIs generating 339% growth across client account opens and revenue. She was also one of the first to adopt image extensions, driving a 216% increase in CTR vs. sitelinks. 

Sophie Fairbairn, Digital Performance Strategist, TMW

Sophie rapidly developed at TMW to lead digital strategy across 30 clients, with an internal team of 10+ people that generated the agency impressive revenue. Her brand awareness paid social media strategy for Onken has increased their engagement rate by 1600% in 2021. She has increased the TMW Performance team’s revenue by over 230% between 2021 and 2022.

Krishan Gandhi, Head of Data and Analytics, iCrossing UK

Promoted to iCrossing’s senior leadership team at only 27 following a 31% revenue increase in 12 months, Krishan is passionate about shifting the perception of data and technology investment from a cost-centre to a profit-centre. His highlights include pioneering an industry-first view on how brands need to prepare for a cookieless world at events and delivering a successful Customer Engagement Platform solution for Volkswagen UK.

Olivia Gilbert, Global Agency Director, MiQ

From the youngest agency director at MiQ to youngest Group Agency Director in EMEA and now Global Agency Director for their largest global partner, Dentsu, Olivia is an award-winning individual. She grew Dentsu from the ground up hitting KPI targets with a projected yearly revenue increase of 220% compared to its first year. She believes in the strength of a team and mentors ambitious women to pay her experience forward.

Monica Giurgiu, Head of Digital Rights Management and Platform Operations, Little Dot Studios

Described as “one of the most impressive industry professionals I’ve had the chance to work with”, Monica’s combination of commercial instinct and technical knowledge was instrumental in her effectively building a new business in content rights management, facilitating a collaboration between fans uploading content and IP owners. Her team now manages more than six billion views and 69 billion hours of watch-time per year. 

Georgina Gray, Customer Success Director, EMEA, Partnerize

With a 100% client retention rate to her name and her work to achieve 93% above target over the Black Friday/Cyber Monday weekend for a client as one of many examples of success, Georgina stands out for her focus on customer centricity. This combined with her execution day to day results in tangible deliverables, and her desire to continuously improve is evident in the standards she holds for herself and her colleagues.

Piper Heitzler, Head of Growth, EMEA, Amobee

“Leading by doing”, Piper’s results in her time at Amobee include pioneering the first cross-device graph with ID5 to give European marketers the ability to plan, activate and measure across cookies and cookieless environments, and a first to market data collaboration integration with data cleanroom InfoSum. As Head of Growth, she leads the Business Development, Solutions Engineering, Marketing and PR functions for the EMEA region. 

Jack Hickman-Gibb, Biddable Account Director, Mediahub

Jack’s promotion to Director has seen his leadership skills flourish, with half of his team of performance biddable specialists being promoted. He was instrumental in the launch of Mediahub Labs and its scripting tool Equilibrium which has driven significant annual savings and efficiencies such as an automated pacing script to save up to 80 hours a month. As one colleague sums up: “If only I could bottle the spark Jack has, we would have a winning formula to sell.”

Lotte Hill, Media Director, RocketMill

Lotte’s proven track record in smashing client revenue and CPA targets is one aspect that demonstrates her client-first mentality. Among many successes, RocketMill and Missoma’s 2021 ‘Feel Good Weekend’ campaign pioneered a full-funnel, omnichannel experience that supported overall campaign digital revenue increases of 65% year-on-year, among other stellar results. She is seen by her clients as part of their team and integral to their overall performance.

Harry Hugo, Co-Founder, The Goat Agency

Harry co-founded an influencer marketing agency from scratch in 2015 - The Goat Agency is now a global 200-person business turning over more than £40m in 2021. With a mission of pioneering influencer marketing to become one of the best performance media channels there is, Harry and his team have driven positive ROAS for some of the world’s biggest brands. The Goat Agency has now tracked the performance of over 200,000 influencers, delivering 450,000 pieces of content globally in over 70 countries.

Tim Hyde, Founder and Director, TWH Media

Since launching TWH Media in 2017, Tim has spent more than £100m to deliver more than £500m in revenue for his clients. He has become one of the most trusted paid social and performance marketing experts in Europe and has consulted with many major brands including Huel, Dreamworks and SumUp. He stands out for his extensive experience of making global brands ‘go viral’ with engaging social media campaigns and acquisition strategies. 

Abbey Jordan, Performance Strategy Manager, Reprise Digital

Abbey’s successes are a roll-call of true performance. An average 30% increase in click throughs for Honda across the UK, France and Germany after optimising its commercial content, to work with Western Union that saw an 83% year-on-year rise in UK commercial registrations at the end of 2021 are just some of the examples of her “laser focus”. She is recognised by colleagues as being “able to read a room and identify a direction that makes sense”.

Agne Kuklyte, Head of Performance Marketing, Mosquito Digital 

Agne’s first year at Mosquito saw her lead paid media search and influencer campaigns for Turtle Wax that claimed the top spot in category and organic ranking after years of being outranked by competitors. Her most recent large-scale campaign for an alcohol awareness charity saw its ambitious sign-up target being met a year early with a CPA 50% below target. Agne is recognised for her agile approach to campaign strategy, with the motivation to drive performance marketing excellence from day one.

Breckon Lewis, Senior Manager, Client Strategy,  Tinuiti

Breckon leads the Etsy business and its team of more than 50 digital marketers, spearheading strategy deployment and execution across four media channels and multi-million budgets with stand-out achievements that demonstrate his thought leadership. Since day one of his time at Tinulti his colleagues and clients have benefitted from “an energy and passion that is hard to come by” who is “always willing to go the extra mile”. 

Bernadette Mallon, Senior Channel Manager - Owned Media, Tesco Bank

At the age of 28, Bernadette led the strategy to unlock Tesco Clubcard data to power the supermarket’s performance marketing strategies, with her team now outstripping the ROI of all other channels at the bank. In the words of her team, Bernadette has “a laser focus on performance whilst blending a creative vision that is unparalleled”.

Suzie Maynard. Associate Director, Media Strategy, Merkle 

Starting her own freelance ad business back in 2014 aged only 18, Suzie is now pitching and winning the business for Merkle’s first ever influencer marketing campaign for one of the agency's largest clients, Danone. From Adobe to TikTok ads, Suzie is smashing targets for clients including Hilton, Warner Brothers and Canon. 

Rosemary McLeod, Account Manager, Rakuten Advertising

Rosie led a sophisticated cross-channel strategy for the “Aje Athletica” capsule, spearheading YouTube, Discovery, Pinterest, Search and Shopping, while collaborating with Display and Social to deliver 89% over the impression goal. The quality with which Rosie delivers her data analysis and presents them eloquently to clients makes her a standout team member.

Bruna Nobre, Head of Publisher Development Manager, Rakuten Advertising 

At just 27, Bruna’s work enabled more than 70% YoY growth in revenue for the top 10 publishers on the Rakuten Brazilian network, before heading the team that achieved a 60% increase in active partners and 30% in YoY sales (more than the Brazilian e-commerce market).  Bruna has also managed a number of key projects for the Brazilian affiliate network, such as educational materials, tutorial vídeos and in particular, started the schedule of Rakuten Advertising events in Brazil. 

Kristina Nolan, VP of Affiliate, DMi Partners 

“Truly a leading visionary in the affiliate marketing world”, Krisitina built DMi Partners’ affiliate management service from scratch, which now represents URBN, Nestle Purina, Scott’s Miracle Gro, Colgate. Krisitina also created a course with partnership SaaS platform Impact on B2B Partnerships which is over six hours of content helping to educate C-Suite marketing professionals looking to expand their partnership ecosystem 

Belinda O'Reilly, Director, Client Services, Rakuten Advertising 

“Belinda has excelled at every challenge we’ve thrown at her, and we’ve thrown a lot!”  Within just two years, she was promoted to a management role after her client portfolio retailers made up 45% of Rakuten Advertising’s gross profit and 50% of revenue, including Astley Clarke, Jimmy Choo, Molton Brown and Hunter. Now 27, Belinda now oversees the firm’s media business to deliver exceptional ad experiences across Rakuten’s 70+ digital media and commerce properties. 

Tom Pool, Technical SEO Director, Blue Array 

A natural mentor despite his youth, Tom runs an Advanced Technical SEO training course as part of BrightonSEO, proving to be one of the more popular courses at the conference, delivering in-person training to over 150 people. From the company's first hire in 2016, Tom now manages the entire technical output of the agency, working on all clients, and conducts R&D projects such as an inhouse keyword ‘clustering’ tool, keyword gap analysis and many more. 

Amy Ratcliffe, Planning Director, CHS 

Amy created a strategy department from scratch for CHS, resulting in a growing in-house team that weaved strategic thinking into all campaign work. She also pioneered creative strategy for household brands, including HSBC UK, which has led to award-winning campaigns and delivers over 30% of the agency’s annual revenue. Colleague endorsement is glowing: "when I compare CHS pre Amy and post Amy, the difference is stark.

Nicole Wellman, Senior Manager, Rakuten Advertising 

In less than six years, Nicole has received seven promotions. Now, at just 26, Nicole manages a portfolio including Net-A-Porter, H&M, Microsoft and MATCHESFASHION and now manages upwards of six account managers. Her client portfolio has seen an average 146% growth in net sales and 139% growth in Rakuten Advertising revenue year on year. In addition, she has achieved a 100% client retention rate over a challenging two years for the retail industry.

Amanda Zwerin, Paid Search Supervisor, Union

Amanda’s innovative ideas and bottom-of-the-funnel efforts have revolutionised how the agency does business and delivers groundbreaking results for each client, such as increasing Amazon Advertising sales 80% for a national cleaning and hygiene products client. As one colleague puts it: “as a performance marketer, [Amanda] has the perfect right brain/left brain balance: She’s really analytical with the numbers and makes sure Union is optimising accounts, but also understands the client’s and customer’s persona.

The Newcomers Awards go to: 

Brenden Delarua, Digital Media Planner, Big Sea

At only 25 now, he achieved the highest ROAS for a client in his first 18 months, going from 3:1 to 6:1 and an impressive increase in monthly spend. Designing a robust multi-channel funnel, his creative use of retargeting helped the client exceed first-time donor goals by 437%, and increase their ROAS by over 2000%. 

Clara Gandakusuma, Publisher Development Specialist, Rakuten Advertising

Beginning in performance marketing only 11 months ago, Clara has successfully grown revenue across SEA and India by 78% over the past year. She has a knack for ‘matchmaking’ advertisers and publishers resulting in a 103% increase in GMS and 133% boost in commission for publishers YoY. Together with ShopBack Philippines, Clara organised RNT for global brands resulting in two new partnerships, uplift in traffic and up to 1,000% increase in clicks.

Jordan Lawson, Global Performance Manager, Wavemaker Global

Since starting her media career in 2019, Jordan has gone from strength to strength. Of the 16 campaigns she personally launched, she has achieved an average over-delivery of +126% on performance KPIs. A true team-player, she is an active volunteer for Wavemaker’s growth and development initiatives, with a motivation to succeed that is clear and a drive that is “incomparable”.

Stephanie Poon, Senior Client Services Manager, Hybrid Theory

Entering the business as a graduate and rising to Senior Client Services Manager in less than two years, Stephanie has increased quarterly bookings for a key insurance client by 322%, grown the account of a market-leading global technology provider by 833% and managed a 95% client retention rate, driven both by campaign performance and excellent client servicing. Steph is described as “always on call” and builds trust with clients and meaningful relationships that endure, despite the virtual age we all exist in now. She refers to this as a “white glove” service.

 


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