The team

The Starship was launched back in 1991 by a small team of hardened creative and media professionals dedicated to putting dings in the marketing Universe. That makes us one of the longest established boutique marketing agencies in ANZ.

Our mission is very simple - to break the mould of any industry we enter. To produce stand-out, memorable work that effectively shocks that sector and gets a record-breaking ROI for our client's marketing investment - which we have done hundreds of times - see case studies or ask us for details about your industry. And another - honesty - something most agencies are not known for, but with Starship, our lack of 'filters' is legendary. You won't leave a meeting with us wondering what we think.

However that doesn't mean we take ourselves seriously. Truly talented people don't have to be wankers. Our culture is relaxed professionalism - humour, innovation, curiosity, with a never-ending flow of ideas. Big enough for any serious challenge but small enough to stay agile, we respond dynamically to new circumstances and always see the opportunities. Team Starship is a crack unit of experienced strategists, planners, and talented creatives, working with highly practical teams across content production, digital and traditional media, social media, and brand development.

The Covid-19 pandemic has been ongoing for years, bringing businesses difficult new realities. Some haven't been able to recalibrate, while others have thrived. With our dynamic, tailor-made creative approach to strategic problems, we'll be able to help you and your brand adapt to any new challenges you might face: ranging from short-term solutions to long-term planning and messaging. During Covid and its aftermath, Starship is pleased to say we are being helped by heaps of experienced freelancers (and our favourite: moonlighters) whom we’ve worked with over the years across design, branding, video & TV production, styling, radio recording, website development and coding, packaging and media, social and influencer marketing.

If there’s anything you need done, please brief us and let’s see if we can help you get much more than what you need or expect out of the project.

Key Executives

Geoffrey McDonald Bowll

Captain / Managing Director

Geoffrey has a high profile in marketing circles in Australasia. His background is in market research and video production, prior to establishing Starship in 1991. Since founding Starship he's led brand strategies for many of Australia's ASX largest groups - he was also the lead writer for Marketing Magazine and the VP of the State Council of the Australian Marketing Institute for 10 years.

Geoffrey understands what motivates people to act, which, combined with his natural capacity to think laterally, makes him a lifelong disruptor and challenger of the status quo. Driven by a desire to produce creative and highly effective strategic marketing solutions, Geoffrey has led over 150+ commercial product, service and brand launches, and managed hundreds of Australia's most successful campaigns over the decades.

Geoffrey factoid #666

Geoffrey has conducted over 1,000 focus groups, but is still often stunned by what people say about their brands.

Prue Kirkcaldie

Creative strategist

Need a deeply emotive creative strategy that will work across all channels to market? Prue is here to help your brand evolve and stay relevant, online and offline. As Creative Director for major agencies for the first couple of decades of her career, Prue's deep experience includes time spent in New York, London, Amsterdam, New Zealand, and Australia, working with major and challenger brands to keep them top of mind and customer-connected. As a Founder of Starship, Prue creates high-level communication strategies and has won more awards than almost anyone else working in ad land today.

Prue is also an artist – her work is all about the narrative that flows from ‘life force’ energy, which she is currently doing a fascinating series of 2D and 3D pieces about. Check out her work [ here ].

Anya Ow

Brand Designer

Anya has a fantastic eye and intuition for how a brand needs to communicate. Starting from the need to create a brand's overarching strategy, personality, and language, Anya produces dynamic solutions for her clients to stand out in increasingly crowded market places. From big brands needing multiple strategies across their portfolio, to small startups who want to stand out and scale rapidly by attracting the right customers or stakeholders with the right message, Anya is our go-to for effective, beautiful, considered work your competitors will be pointing at saying 'why didn't we do that?'.

Off the clock, Anya is a sophisticated lover of big cities, a foodie, fashionista, an illustrator, and a writer. She has published two books with a third on its way in 2022, and has also written several short stories for notable magazines such as Asimov's, Lightspeed, Fantasy, and Uncanny.


Anya Factoid #77

Anya loves chocolate, but she's allergic to it, so she can only eat it now and then in tiny quantities.

Helen Papas

Accounts Manager

Helen is found in the background making sure that money comes in and goes out at the appropriate times. Helen provides financial reporting and client reconciliations keeping everyone on budget and on time.

Helen Factoid #24

Helen used to be a husky mom.

Creative Teams

Starship has a range of creative teams we work with regularly for various media or industry needs - many of whom we have been colleagues on a bunch or even hundreds of projects or campaigns.

We have teams for product design, branding, websites, video or social campaigns, research projects, public relations, business planning and retail design, real or meta.

We even have teams for certain key industries, like agribusiness, pharmaceuticals, fashion, finance or FMCG - all of which require very specialised people who know how those industries work from a technical and/or legal standpoint.

Industries have 'looks', which you need to know, to avoid and stand out. Same with media - just because it's usually done this way does not mean you should follow that line. What's critical is getting the most bang for your buck - and that's always not doing conventional marketing. As all that will do, is make your board happy for a few months, until they see the figures go South. Then you'll be back on LinkedIn or Seek, looking for another gig.


Media Teams

If you are a prospective client, and especially if you have had some, or worse for you, considerable media experience, please acknowledge that contrary to what the big media groups portray, media buying is not precise numbers and demographics x psychographics that is well researched and perfectly understood and audited. That's sheer bunkum. Media buying is instead more like buying horses in the dark, a strange and mysterious art come profession only the mad would take on.

Yes, being a little crazy, Starship has been buying media directly, and through media buying houses (for 30 years), depending upon the circumstances. If you are a media representative, please call our office to see if we have a supply contract with your group.

As an industry observation - anyone who tells you that they get better deals because they buy large amounts of media is an idiot - that means they have been prepared to settle for deals that are by definition very profitable to those media groups they have in tow.

Anyone who tells you that their system is bulletproof because it measures so many aspects and trade-offs is also full of it, as there are millions of media options and nothing can account for all the variables. They are just using quasi technology/science to con you.

The only people you can trust are those who have a hunch, buy some exposure in that market, experiment with what works for which client and what product, and then move on in a more effective manner. It's like cooking - the ingredients and the plan are about right - but the quality of the cake depends on the creative love going into it.

At Starship we are most concerned not about how much money we can winkle out of a media plan, but what that plan is going to do for the bank accounts of our clients.

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