In order to run a successful global social media agency, you need a team of talented individuals constantly pulling together in the right direction to make things happen. We are proud of our team of strategists, creatives, influencers, community managers, and marketers, and we’d like for you to get to know them a little bit more.
Having sacrificed what we’re sure would’ve been a hedonistic career DJ’ing in Ibiza, David Comiskey, OST’s Senior Designer, uses his experience and skills to produce and design anything from social graphics to full-length brand films for our clients. We’ve also recently learned that he makes a great Ursula from The Little Mermaid. Find out more…
What are your passions/hobbies/interests?
Going to the pub, going out to eat, live music and clubs. Scratch that, I’m into everything! I love collecting records and I’m at that time in my life where I’ve stopped fighting the truth… I love gardening! I’m out working at my allotment space if I’m not in front of a screen. Thankfully, I live in a Victorian house so there is always an infinite maintenance schedule to attend to, and I’m a DIY freak.
Could you talk us through a normal day for you?
My day normally starts around 9am. I could have run various content exports the previous day so I’ll review those before I share them with my colleagues. I continuously review the statuses of projects on our management tool, Asana. It has a dashboard where I can see the state of each project. I’ll also have opportunities to apply date ranges on my projects so my team can see what capacity I have at any given time, which is handy if there are ever any last-minute urgent project bits.
I work on everything from creating content for our channels, dealing with technical aspects of shooting content and video production, inputting on brainstorming campaigns, and creating mock-ups and pitch content. As we have international client social accounts and we do need to be conscious of localised content and this calls for flexibility with my working week. In summary, my ‘normal day’ consists of making a plan of attack, give my best every day and don’t forget to pack a sense of humour, it comes in handy.
What’s your favourite account on social media and why?
I really enjoy @SUATISM on Instagram, who is ‘making the planet dance’ with his music, comedy, and content.
Despite all music venues being the last to reopen in 2021, he’s always putting out entertaining outdoor content and has got real business acumen – he has a Patreon account and is running Facebook Live and Twitch events where he discusses music and maintaining a good mindset in these uncertain times. He’s also pulling in bookings for when the world does open again. I wished I’d thought of that, and also wish I was 10 years younger!
Why did you choose a career in social media?
I’m interested in communication and engagement opportunities in how we connect with one another, but also the practice of portraying an individual, brand or product in social in the most effective way feels like a natural evolution for me.
I really enjoy creating an experience, in the joy of growing an audience or brand through great design, typography, photography and engaging video. If our work delights the client, I’m buzzing. If a client rates their ‘experience’ in equal measure to the ‘performance’ of their content I feel I’ve done my job, and to succeed you must work well in a team and be immune to last-minute changes and be ready to explore different tactics. I really do believe this sector is among the most exciting and most commercially viable areas you can exist in as a designer right now.
I have previously worked in various design and advertising agencies. 15 years ago it was all about traditional print and DVD production (yep, remember print and films you physically owned?!), 10 years ago I was entrenched in regional press advertising and design for luxurious brands all over the world. Five years ago I was working in food retail and store design, and today I’m still using my original skills base but continuously learning.
Do you have a favourite social media ads campaign?
The undisputed colour experts Pantone did a one-day campaign during the NFL Super Bowl. It was good to test the water with limited resources and identify the bridge between sports fans and design gurus. Pantone live-tweeted the audience, providing a colour-coded breakdown of the action. The campaign worked because The Super Bowl is one of the biggest sporting events of the year, and Pantone found a way to capitalise on fan engagement in a surprising way. What’s cool is that the two brands would never normally be mentioned in the same sentence – it was a smart move.
What future social media and/or developments in marketing are you excited about?
I’m interested in social media agencies that are offering virtual events as part of their marketing offering to both consumer and B2B clients. The production element of live filming, streaming, and live community management of channels is really interesting for someone with my creative background. At OST we’ve already been producing these for our clients, and for our own virtual B2B conference, #DigiConf21. The second area is the humanisation movement in the B2B sector. Subject experts in AI, cryptocurrency, and FinTech are now looking for wider accessibility and authenticity in their messaging, akin to more consumer-led tactics, so that’s opening the door for new strategies from a marketing perspective.
Tell us one random fact about yourself?
I re-designed the McVities Penguin Bar characters in 1991 (I was 10!) and still have the typed letter from their marketing department thanking me for my drawings. Six months later and boom: Penguin had a new brand and all the wrappers had sporty, holiday-making, and white-collar uniformed penguins. Looking back, I wish I understood artistic copyright in 1991 as I could have made a quite lot of money!
If you weren’t at OST you would be…
I’d like to think I would have carved a lucrative career as a DJ and music producer in the Balearics somewhere. It’s reassuring that Pete Tong is 60 years young – that gives me 21 years to smash it out of the park. Now, where are my headphones?
Lifehack: anything worth doing is always hard work!