BIMA, the industry association representing the digital and interactive media industry, has appointed CEO of TMW UNLIMITED, Chris Mellish as its new President.
Mellish, who succeeds Natalie Gross and Tarek Nseir in his new role, is acutely aware that his presidency coincides with a “critical time for the digital sector.”
“The government needs to do an incredible amount to support both business and individuals, otherwise the economic consequences could be severe for many in our industry,” he said.
Keen to point out the particular challenges faced by one part of the sector, Mellish added that, “Small agencies are often the starting point for many people’s careers, they are the lifeblood of our industry if you like. This virus doesn’t discriminate by industry sector, so the government needs to provide comprehensive support across all areas, for both brands and agencies. But support for smaller agencies through the coming months is what would be of most use to our industry”.
Far from being purely a government problem, Mellish knows BIMA and the wider industry also has a major role to play. “These strange and challenging times are forcing brands and agencies into re-shaping their relationships, some of which have been established over many years. Helping both sides of our membership think creatively about how they can do this while continuing to support each other is something we should be focusing on.”
Beyond the current crisis, Mellish believes the industry needs to do more to attract and retain new talent. “Early in my career, the industry felt like an exciting and alluring place to be and we need to recapture that feeling. Part of this challenge is about being better at recognising what motivates today’s younger workforce. Their outlook and priorities are significantly different and we need to understand what this means. We need to make some fundamental changes to the way we operate, collectively.”
Chris is the former CEO of interactive agency Razorfish and the CEO & Owner of marketing consultancy Blackbook London. BIMA is an organisation close to his heart: “The BIMA Awards was the first awards ceremony I ever attended and the first award I ever won. Since that day I’ve always held BIMA in high esteem and have admired how it has grown and evolved, particularly over the past few years under the leadership of outgoing co-presidents Natalie Gross and Tarek Nseir, and BIMA MD Holly Hall.”
“Getting the chance to lead an industry body such as BIMA is an amazing honour,” he added. “I hope in some way it gives me the opportunity and platform to pay back and help an industry that has been amazingly good to me over the past 20+ years. I’m looking forward to helping all sides of our membership think creatively about how we can do this.”