Mxolisi Buthelezi

June15 Advertising

Founded in 2009, June15 Advertising is a black owned advertising agency.

The attainment of great work is bigger than any of us , it is non-negotiable, it requires of us to exceed clients’ expectations, it is an effective and efficient way of going about our business, it is an ideal that constantly drives us in our daily work.

Where did you grow up and what were the reactions you received from people in your life when you said you wanted to go into advertising/marketing?

My family was a bit nomadic. I grew up in Soweto and Alexandra. I identify with Alex more. I was studying marketing so it didn’t make much of a difference to those around me. I don’t think they understood what I meant then anyway...

When did you develop and interest for advertising/marketing?

It was around 1994/5, when I read about Herdbuoys, the first black owned advertising agency..quite honestly I didn’t even know what an advertising agency is or does. I also liked Peter Vundla’s silk shirt (one of the Herdbuoys founders)...

How did you break into the industry and how did you land your new job?

After taking a serious interest in what these Herdbuoys ppl were doing, I then camped outside their agency. They were in Marlboro then - a walking distance from Alex. After ‘harassing’ Peter Vundla’s PA, I was let in to come and see what they do. I then got a bursary to go to the AAA School of Advertising. One of the guest lecturers was a ‘suit’ from Ogilvy. He invited me over to their agency. I then forwarded my CV. They didn’t have a space/job for me but their Cape Town agency did. I took the first flight available... That was in 1997 and that was my first full time job in the ad industry.

What does it take to be successful in the advertising industry

Talent. Attitude. Talent. Balls. Talent. Talent. Talent. Attitude.

What are your take on the current South African advertising landscape, what needs to change?

The industry is evolving all the times. Adapt or die.

What are your opinions on transformation in the advertising/creative environment?

What transformation? True transformation can only happen if clients want it to happen.

Please list three projects you have been a part of. / Please share some of your proudest career moments.

My first account as a junior ‘suit’ on Carling Black Label, re-branding Financial Mail when I was their brand manager and launching June15 Advertising.

What advice do you have for young people who are interested in entering the industry?

Don’t. Unless you’re talented and have balls.

Are there any new, exciting projects you are currently working on that you can share with us

We are re-launching an iconic South African brand in the market. I get goosebumps just thinking about the prospects...

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