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[Behind the Selfie] with... Pepe Marais

This week, we find out what's really going on behind the selfie with Pepe Marais, Chief Creative Officer (CCO) of Joe Public...
"This is love", you get the same face when you show amazing ads…
"This is love", you get the same face when you show amazing ads…

1. Where do you live, work and play?

Marais: I am a born and bred Capetonian who followed my heart and passion to Joburg, and today, everything I live for happens in and around this city.

2. What's your claim to fame?

Marais: I don't aim for fame, I aim to add Über value and make a significant difference to the world we live in.

3. Describe your career so far.

Marais: Incredible. Although I do believe I am only at the start of it.

4. Tell us a few of your favourite things

Marais: I am obsessed with personal growth and human potential and spend an immense amount of energy on this area. I am also a deep believer in having purpose in life. I am blessed with an incredible wife and young boy. Oh, and I am a closet rock star.

5. What do you love about your industry?

Marais: That every single day is filled with different challenges. It gives me so much energy. It's also an industry that embraces creativity more than most.

6. What are a few pain points your industry can improve on?

Marais: Over-thinking, too much head and too little heart. Not changing the way we do things fast enough.

7. Describe your average workday (if such a thing exists).

Marais: Up at 4:30am. Morning intention standing on top of my bed. Crossfit. Meditate. Goal setting. Tweet time. Breakfast. Start work on average at 7:30am. Working hard towards focusing more on creativity and being less trapped in meetings. Lunch on the run. Last meeting normally finishes at 6:30pm. Second breath, 20-minute workout. Family dinner around the table 7 days a week. Story time for Jasper. Bed at 8:30pm. Read until 9pm. Sleep. Because 7.5 hours of sleep makes you more creative. Repeat.

8. What are the tools of your trade?

Marais: My mind - that's my head and my heart - is my greatest tool.

9. Who is getting it right in your industry?

Marais: I would have to say King James in South Africa, followed by Ogilvy Cape Town, and I have always respected FoxP2 for their incredible commitment to creative excellence. But on a global level, with no doubt, Droga 5.

10. What are you working on right now?

Marais: The launch of Dialdirect's new positioning and a next-level campaign for Nedbank.

11. Tell us some of the buzzwords floating around in your industry at the moment, and some of the catchphrases you utter yourself

Marais: Integration. Although no one is really making it work.

12. Where and when do you have your best ideas?

Marais: When I am resting.

13. What's your secret talent/party trick.

Marais: I can sing and play Wild Horses by The Rolling Stones - in Afrikaans.

14. Are you a technophobe or a technophile?

Marais: I am a Twitterphile, and to prove it, here's a tweet:

Selfies are so yesterday.

15. What would we find if we scrolled through your phone?

Marais: A very, very long list of friends accumulated over the years. I have no apps on my phone. My iPhone can only do hello and goodbye.

16. What advice would you give to newbies hoping to crack into the industry?

Marais: Hard work and passion beats talent hands down.

17. Plug your contact details, punt yourself - list all the places people can find you/your work online...

Marais: Google.

Click here for a reminder of all Joe Public's successes in the past year, and here to visit its press office.

*Interviewed by Leigh Andrews.

About Leigh Andrews

Leigh Andrews AKA the #MilkshakeQueen, is former Editor-in-Chief: Marketing & Media at, with a passion for issues of diversity, inclusion and equality, and of course, gourmet food and drinks! She can be reached on Twitter at @Leigh_Andrews.
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