It’s been a while since we sat down with a member of the team for an interview, so we decided to spend some time with our Head of Digital Stephan Lange, to see if we could work out what mades him tick….. Here is what we discovered.
1. Who is Stephan? describe yourself in one sentence
I am the german guy with a sense of humour. At least that is what other people say about me.
2. Where did you grow up and what do you miss about home?
I grew up behind the iron curtain, 15 min from a sandy beach (yes Germany has beaches). After the wall came down it opened up a lot of new possibilities that I wouldn’t have had before. This way I could travel the world and ended up in Australia.
What do I miss? Apart from my family and friends I miss dark bread and good sausages. At least I can buy some german chocolate from Aldi now.
3. Tell us about your first job?
I think I was 14 and got a school holiday job at a metal recycling company. The first day 2 of us spend 8 hours on a 100m2 block of land sorting through millions of pieces of metal. We were sorting them by material – copper, silver, iron, aluminium etc.
8 hours later we were pretty happy with ourselves until the foreman came with a crane, picked up the containers that we sorted the different metals into and emptied them back onto the block of land right in front of us. Talking about keeping someone busy.
By trade I am actually a freight forwarder.
4. What is your favourite part about your job at Metropolis?
There is a bar in the office… no seriously, Metropolis is like a big family. There is a lot of laughter and excitement in the office and i’m surrounded by a group of people that want to be the best at their job.
5. What excites you most about the industry?
Digital never sleeps and is always evolving. That internet things seems like it is here to stay and won’t go away for a while. There are interesting innovations and ideas coming out everyday and it is great to see that is is being embraced all over the world…. Have you seen my recent blog post about VR? it’s worth a read.
6. What is your favourite piece of advertising (Past or present)?
I was fortunate enough to work on the Qantas “You are the reason we fly” campaign. As part pf the campaign we created a digital interaction piece with a digital billboard that used high frequency sound to recognise users who had the QantasYou app downloaded on their phones and who could then see their name and image on the 3.5m-wide display screens when they were in front of them.
7. What effect do you feel Digital technology is having on the Advertising Industry?
Digital is growing more and more important. With such a large percentage of people owning and using smartphones today, digital advertising just follows you around and you can’t really get away from it anymore. It used to be print, billboards, radio or television and now digital technologies are taking over.
And as I mentioned before Digital is ever evolving – you probably have heard of the internet of things or brand bots or billboards that look back at you. In the end digital also means data and the tracking, analysis and interpretation of this data.
Because we are now connected 24/7 advertisers will be able to use the collected data much more efficient and specific to reach the right person at the right time.
8. Which 3 people inspire you creatively and the reason/s why?
- Elon Musk – a billionaire who wants to change the world and humanity with electric cars, re-usable space rockets, solar cells and artificial intelligence – how can you not be inspired by that.
- Iain McDonald – he was my mentor when I first started in the digital space and is still one of the craziest people I have ever met – a great mind full of futuristic visions and always on the look out for the next big thing.
- Cookie Monster – he likes cookies as much as I like ice cream.
9. What matters more than money?
In short – a good work/life balance.
I like to work hard and I relish the time I get to spend at home with my growing family.
10. What does FY2016/17 have in store for you?
I am going to be a dad for the second time which will keep me on my toes for sure.
On the work side of things, as a Digital team at Metropolis we are hopeful that clients will be keen to kick off some interesting innovation focused projects in the year ahead.
As I am seeing a big potential for VR in the property sector, we are working towards getting a client project off the ground with a virtual reality component.