Meet Will Bonaddio , Electric House’s first London-based Senior Client Partner. We caught up with him to learn more about his journey.
I’ve always been known as William professionally, but now I work for a young, fast-paced Social Media business I’m fully embracing ‘Will.’ I’m extremely proud to be Electric House’s first London-based member of staff and up until this summer had spent my entire life living and working within Zones 1 and 2 of the capital!
I started at a small independent media agency called The Media Shop back in 2006 as a press/digital planner before focusing exclusively on digital at Arena BLM (now part of Havas). I was lucky enough to work on clients like T-Mobile, Honey Monster Foods, Scalextric, Pathé Films and Domino’s Pizza during a really exciting time in the industry as the likes of YouTube, Twitter and Facebook were all launching ad platforms and Apple released the original iPhone which meant I got to work on the first Domino’s Pizza mobile app (yes, I’m that old!).
I loved working on Domino’s as my main client, but when the opportunity to join OMD UK to work on the ultimate ‘Quick Serve Restaurant’, McDonald’s, came up I had to take it. Working with my favourite brand’s sponsorship of the Olympics in my hometown in 2012 remains one of my career highlights and it really was a role where every day was different. One week I’d be helping serve McFlurry ice creams from a van at a festival in Newcastle, the next I’d be planning how to promote the Community Shield with a live stream from Wembley. Plus I ate a LOT of burgers which were free from the restaurant at head office.
I did leave OMD for 6 months to work on the Disney account at Carat Global (I’m partly to blame for your kids loving Frozen – sorry), but soon returned to focus purely on Social Media at OMD on the likes of Rimmel London and MONOPOLY (I helped launch their Facebook Page and was the official voice of Rich Uncle Pennybags in the UK on Social).
It was around that time when the opportunity to help McDonald’s in-house came about, and what was meant to be a short-term secondment to help them out turned into the most rewarding 5 years of my career working as their Social Media Editor-in-Chief and leading them to win “Best Use of Facebook” and “Best Use of Content on a Social Platform” at The Drum and Social Buzz awards respectively. Which, in a way, led me to Electric House….
Lee Wilcox (our co-founder) was speaking at the same conference as me back in 2017, and had the on-stage slot directly before mine. I’d not heard of On The Tools and given I was talking about an award winning strategy for McDonald’s didn’t feel it’d be a particularly tough act to follow to be honest. But as soon as Lee walked on stage, showed off the amazing work they’d done and busted every myth about brands on social I was totally blown away (and absolutely terrified about having to take the stage directly after!).
As soon as I finished my talk we both approached each other to see how we could work together, and the first campaign between McDonald’s and On The Tools was the top performing piece of branded content the Golden Arches had created that year. Our relationship continued to grow and through working with the amazing Electric House team and watching episodes of The Daily Bolt to see the incredible camaraderie across the business, I knew that this was a company I wanted to be part of.
As Senior Client Partner, it’s my job to develop Electric House’s commercial presence in London. I lead our relationships with London-based media agencies and clients, working with them to create campaign strategies across our On The Tools, On a Budget and Ministry Of… communities that are designed to hit their marketing goals. It’s the first London-based role at Electric House and an absolutely massive honour to play such an important part in our growth.
When I worked agency and client-side, I always said that brands on social needed to act more like publishers. It’s why the likes of Paddy Power, Old Spice and Innocent Smoothies always get called out as ‘best in class’ examples, as they don’t make ads that feel like ads which in turn makes people more likely to pay attention, engage and share. One of the first presentations I saw after joining Electric House had the quote “Create content like the programmes you watch, not the adverts in-between,” and it really sums up our approach to advertising which I absolutely love.
Social Media is meant to be fun, entertaining, social and interesting – thankfully working at Electric House is exactly the same.
Want to become part of the EH team? – Find out more here.