Global Head of Search and Social
Volkswagen at PHD Global

Like with many who enter a career in Search Advertising, Emily didn’t plan to. Originally from South Africa, Emily’s been in London for 13 years. Her first three years were spent client-side in start-ups, before moving agency-side to hone her search skills – a particular area she took to in a digital start-up environment. She’s spent the last ten years working with top clients in the FMCG, Auto, Finance, Travel and Telco verticals within Publicis, Dentsu Aegis, WPP and now Omnicom Group.


Emily is currently the PHD Global lead for Volkswagen across Search and Social, ensuring that all 27 in-market teams uphold the same data-lead, audience-first approach being drummed out from her London-based team. Her passion for driving digital best practice and innovation has most recently seen her presenting at regional gatherings in New York, Singapore and Barcelona; bringing together Volkswagen clients and agencies to improve their digital approach. Her previous post saw her leading a UK team of 40 search specialists.


Outside of work she’s generally outside of London – her ambition to see the world is gradually being realised, with 60 countries visited so far (and many to go!).

Judging panel

Rob Pierre

Chief Executive Officer

Emily Van Lierop

Global Head of Search and Social
Volkswagen at PHD Global

John Stuchfield

Head of Paid Search
Havas Media Group

Nick Bamber

Digital Marketing Director

Niki Grant

Search Director

Ravleen Beeston

UK Head of Sales

Luis Navarrete Gómez

Head of Global Search Marketing
LEGO Group

Rebecca Weeks

Head of Organic Performance
Manning Gottlieb OMD