What’s going on in Sydney’s digital market?

A friend and a client of mine asked me to send him some insights into what is currently happening in the local digital agency landscape, and who the top digital agency players are currently but more importantly – why.

I have been recruiting for digital agencies and advertising agencies for the past decade, and have seen it all. From the rise and fall of Flash, to Social Media coming onto the scene and now to everyone calling themselves UX.

The agencies in my mind that have probably got it right, have pretty much stuck to what they are good at. Sure they have evolved and taken on new skills sets within the agency but their overall business strategy has not changed.

Let me know give you an example.


By far one of the most consistent and successful digital agencies I have personally recruited for and watched flourish over the last 9 years.

They are a perfect example of an agency that has stuck to their guns and focused on what they are good at, as opposed to going off on random tangents.

It’s simple. They solve client’s business problems through technology and innovation with a good mix of tech and creative skills in-house, as well as UX & Social, plus Mobile. The market trend at the moment is gearing more towards this business model. If PWC is going after the digital market as a consultancy you can bet it’s for a reason. You can also bet they have probably modeled their business on an agency like Deepend.

Another very good example of an agency that has got it spot on lately is Holler. They have a fascinating mix of data, creative tech, CX/UX and strategy all mixed into one.

Think about it for a moment. If you’re a marketer looking to reach your customers and looking for a digital partner you would probably want to go to an agency that could tell you who your customers really are (data) and how they engage with your brand UX/CX.

The other thing these two agencies in my opinion have always gotten 100% right is employer branding. Employer branding basically means when recruiting they really care for and look after the candidates that interview at the agency.

The owner of Deepend actually gave an unsuccessful candidate an all expenses paid dinner for two.

Time and time again I have observed agencies getting this wrong and leaving a bad taste in the candidate’s mouth from the experience they had while interviewing for the role.

People talk, and if you want to attract talent, you need to look after every person that steps in and out of your door looking for a job.

From an advertising agency, the agency that has absolutely smashed it out of the park this year from a digital perspective is Havas.

They have gone from win to win. They not only have some of the most talented Creative’s in the Sydney market, but they also cover all areas of digital with a team of around 16 Dev’s lead by a very experienced TD who is also the GM. In addition they haven’t skimped on other areas of digital with a solid UX , Strategy and Social offering.

As an agency they have also gone out and hired the best people possible and I bet their clients have benefited. They haven’t just offshored tech and digital to save a little on the bottom line, they have invested heavily in digital from day one, and it has paid off, big time.


Nick Barry is the Founder of Interactiveinc, established in 2009 to find digital jobs for digital people. For more information visit www.interactiveinc.com.au