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Manning Kolb, Matt Thompson and Michael White, the leadership of Splash Omnimedia

Featured Article

Splash Omnimedia - A Different Kind of Agency

Unshakeable Faith, Strategic Focus Helped Build One of South Carolina's Premier Agencies - But It Wasn't Always Easy

Splash Omnimedia may be one of the top marketing/advertising/communications companies in South Carolina today, but it is really a business that evolved from a Christ-focused inspiration, years of struggle and a dream of helping clients develop strong communication channels for internal and external purposes.

Basically, Splash Omnimedia serves as a client’s entire full-service marketing team for one price, made to provide a fully-inclusive strategic marketing message.

But the journey to success wasn’t all “peaches and cream,” said co-founder Matt Thompson. Only through hard work, an unshakeable belief in success and strong faith did Splash Omnimedia become the company it is today.


Matt Thompson and Michael White, founders of Splash Omnimedia, both worked in banking - specifically mortgage banking - before embarking on their journey.

“From 2006 to 2008, as you may remember, we saw the largest real estate recession of our adult life. Both Michael and I were in mortgage banking, and we constantly thought of how we could help our clients do more business in order for them to help us do more business,” Thompson said. “So we started down the road of marketing before marketing was cool, I guess. We started helping develop people in the real estate industry, helping developers get more business, helping real estate agencies get more business and  helping everyone in the industry get more business.”

What the pair was actually doing was the same types of things Splash Omnimedia does today, which is developing strategies to make customers buy into a client’s “why.”

“People buy into your why faster than they'll buy into your what,” said Thompson. “So while we were still in banking, we started pivoting and felt like the best way to help clients was to help them tell stories better as a way to help business. We helped them define who they needed to tell their story to.”

When Thompson and White began doing that, they discovered that the process not only helped a business’ current and future customers, but the internal team and organization as well. 

“We very quickly started realizing that we had to create a message that resonates with the internal team that we could then take and craft it to where it would resonate with external prospective customers and clients and patients,” Thompson said.

Though they were primarily marketing and consulting with real estate related companies, someone outside the real estate industry called and requested marketing for their business. Why not, the two thought?

“We saw the writing on the wall in 2006, which would have been my second major real estate recession cycle. To be honest with you, I didn't want to go back through another down cycle in the mortgage real estate industry,’ Thompson said. 

“And so I said, ‘Hey, let's start expanding our client base to non-real estate related folks. It wasn’t me or Mike who came up with that. We were Christ-led, and we are a Christian-based organization. We feel like God directed us in that way, which is where Omnimedia comes from. The word Omni resonates with us because Christ is all present and ever-present in our business.”

In 2006, the pair created Splash Omnimedia with a handful of employees. However, the road to success was a rocky one.


While researching the marketing / advertising industry, Splash Omnimedia quickly learned that most firms were owned and operated by web designers, graphic designers, or long term advertising professionals. Thompson and White were business and banking consultants.

“We now serve hundreds of corporate clients from small businesses all the way up to extremely large businesses. But it wasn't always peaches and cream, if you will,” Thompson said.

The recession was in full swing as Splash Omnimedia began, and starting a brand new company in a new industry was difficult. The two invested everything they had into the agency, but within a couple of years, both ended up filing bankruptcy and lost their homes in foreclosure.

“We really, really struggled. I mean, we got down to the point where we didn't really know how we were going to even keep our lights on in our house. There was a stint in my life where I spent probably two to three weeks with no electricity in my house trust, trying to figure out how to eat day to day,” Thompson said.

“But we had faith. We just kept getting nudges and over time, things just so slowly appeared for us. Over the last three to five years, things started picking up significantly and now we've become one of the top communication firms in the state of South Carolina,” said Thompson.

Manning Kolb joined as a partner in the ownership team in 2017.


While most advertising agencies only cared about buying the right mix of media like TV commercials, radio ads, and billboard campaigns, Splash Omnimedia focuses on the results and measuring them.

The business creates strategic plans and communication systems with a  team that thinks beyond their relative area of concentration. In turn, Splash Omnimedia is a true marketing firm, not just an advertising agency.

“When someone hires us, we have all-inclusive pricing, which is very different from our industry. When someone hires us, they pay one price. And for that price, you get a staff of 20 to 25 people,” Thompson said. “You have basically a chief marketing officer and an entire team that literally works on their own that client's business every single day.”

This is what Splash Omnimedia is all about. 

“We come from the banking industry and then we struggled to launch into this industry. Therefore we come at it from a doctor's perspective where we come in and try to figure out your symptoms and figure out what your goals are in life and everything you got to do,” Thompson said. 

“We figure out the solutions, prescribe it and then manage it. Because of our own struggles, we are very empathetic and understand that there are ups and downs in every business, and we can ride through those ups and downs to help our clients.”

The leadership actually now has four organizations, which include Splash Omnimedia. Brand Buzz is a promotional and apparel products company under managing partner Manning. The Brain Storm radio show and podcast serves as the content marketing arm and Next Degree Leader is a leadership coaching and team development organization.

  • Manning Kolb, Matt Thompson and Michael White, the leadership of Splash Omnimedia