Grey Africa has significantly boosted its digital offering following the arrival of Francois du Preez, into the position of digital creative director. Francois brings a strong and diverse digital clout to the Grey team, having vast experience from a digital creative as well as development background.
Francois du Preez
Francois obtained a BA honors degree in the field of multimedia from Vega, the school of brand communication. As one of the founding members of the Firehouse group, a through-the-line agency based in Johannesburg and Lagos, Francois worked with multifaceted creatives and developers to conceptualise and execute digital campaigns for local and international clients. These include: Mutual & Federal, Tiger Brands, Qatar Airways, Thai Airways & UD Nissan.
After the Firehouse, Francois further explored the digital sphere through his new entity called "digitaal". Digitaal scrutinises the way digital projects come to life by looking into the ever-expanding world of open source web tools. The idea is to keep it simple, inexpensive and to never reinvent the wheel where its not necessary. "I found that a lot of clients who have gone through the process of web development have been scarred for life. It is usually a painstaking process that costs a fortune and has an incredibly short shelf life. The paradigm shift I subscribe to is that digital is disposable. A campaign serves its purpose until the next big thing comes along, that is the nature of the beast. The idea should stay alive but the medium hardly ever does in our field. It therefore doesn't make sense to over-complicate things for the sake of showing off. Don't get me wrong, anything is possible and doable, but I believe in having these honest conversations with clients during the briefing process. Digitaal is about keeping it simple even if the back-end isn't."
Francois is also a director of 'Tree - organic technology', a web technology company that specialises in the development of customisable marketing collateral procurement tools and other custom digital projects.
"Digital is always changing - nothing that was best practice ten years ago is still in play today. As our devices, needs and users' capabilities change we have to proactively adapt our thinking and methods. The digital marketing field keeps you on your toes, which is both terrifying and exciting. I love what I do, it will never get old."
Francois has already hit the ground running and is the brain and brawns behind the new grey.co.za portal, and will be spearheading several new digital projects at the agency.
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