Tobey Bower and Darren Walls form marketing consultancy and agency Luster

Darren Walls and Tobey Bower.

Tobey Bower, the former Alpha Digital GM, and Darren Walls, co-founder of Type + Pixel, have launched Luster, a marketing consultancy and agency.

Luster will operate alongside Type + Pixel providing clients with expanded expertise and simpler ways of working across strategy, brand, comms, CX, media and digital projects.

Bower says that cookies are on the way out, digital targeting has lost its fidelity, convoluted tech stacks are being slashed, and media optimisation is increasingly automated.

“Clients are developing a healthy scepticism of some of the metrics that’ve been over-valued, and investment is coming back to brand building,” he said.

“It felt like the time was right for a consulting agency that better balances digital with core marketing principles. It’s been born out of the idea that marketing should be more effective and less complex than it’s been.

“Luster brings clients the reverence for creativity of an ad agency, the zoomed out perspective and commercial nous of a consultancy, the technical background of a digital marketing agency, and the curiosity and playfulness of a kid. We’re pretty keen to do the whole thing with a lot more humanity.

“We’re stubbornly strategy-before-anything. If you properly work through the underlying human problem at the outset, we all get to spend less time doing everything else later. The value prop for our clients and agency partners is simple, effective marketing strategy with fewer points of failure.”

Walls said the partnership is built on a shared belief in the power and value of creativity.

“In today’s digital world, where everything can be tracked and attributed, there’s an unhealthy focus on the short term, on platforms and placements, refining tactical executions to deliver incremental optimisation,” he said.

“We think there’s an opportunity to bridge the gap, to think a little bigger, to blend brand-led creative thinking with digital nous, and serve our clients in both the short and long term.”

Luster is co-located with Type + Pixel in Fortitude Valley and is underway with CX and advertising projects with clients in the health and arts sectors.

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