From the farfetched dreams of a trio of pension nerds to an established strategic marketing consultancy, our journey has followed its own unique course. Born from big ideas, a thirst for knowledge and plenty of creativity. 

We realised how much of the pensions world wanted to make a positive difference. But not everyone has the marketing team, budget, or expertise to make it happen. Untamed Consulting was created to bridge the gap.

Marketing and communications can be tricky enough to nail – add in the pensions niche and it’s almost impossible to find professional expertise with deep industry knowledge. Look no further. We understand the inhouse struggles, where strategic partners can (and can’t) add value and the legislative drivers. It’s why Untamed has taken off. With clients spanning the breadth of the pensions industry from schemes to insurers, advisers to technology partners…and we’re growing every month.

So why Untamed? We’re not wild, but we like to push boundaries. For far too long the industry has hidden behind complexity and T&Cs – making content cautious and predictable, when sometimes you need to really push the boat out. Boundaries, when pushed, can deliver better results. We want to provide the right level of challenge and not just do what’s always been done before. But marketing does need consistency – both for the big splash and the steady ebb and flow of regular communications. Untamed Marketing brings the energy and depth to make it work.


Karen Quinn

Karen Quinn

Karen’s a skilled and experienced chartered marketer with a lengthy background in finance and pensions. Fearless and tenacious, Karen will get into the nitty-gritty of your market, your propositions and your customers wants and needs in order to shape strategic marketing plans to suit you.

With a broad insight into the pensions market overall, she’s able to identify opportunities quickly and help you put your plans into action to capitalise on them. Karen has held previous senior marketing roles at ITM Independent Transition Management, blending pensions, data and technology, as well as at The People’s Pension, with instrumental campaigns which led to rapid and continued growth, both in membership and awareness.

Beyond work Karen is mum to three inspiring, highly-spirited children – with attitudes and ideas so big they’re sure to be future leaders! With a love for sun, sea and gin, when Karen has time off she’s BBQ’ing on remote Cornish beaches or dancing the night away to live music.

And what’s with the water?

The connection to pensions might be tenuous, but water, the sea in particular, holds a very special piece of Karen’s heart. And who she is, is reflected in everything Untamed does. She grew up spending weekends and holidays learning to sail, windsurf and dive…

In it, on it, under it, this is where she’s in her element. The energy, cadence and sheer beauty of the sea is mesmerising. In a nutshell, if we can reflect a tiny bit of the power and energy of the sea in the marketing that we deliver, we’ll know we’re doing something right.   

Update… it looks like the LDI crisis makes the liquid connection to pensions more relevant than ever!

Darren Philp

Darren is a self-confessed pensions and financial services geek, with a passion for creating a better, simpler more engaging industry that delivers better outcomes for its customers.

Darren jumped with both feet out of client-side roles in June 2022 as he wanted to try something different - going alone had been an ambition that has been long in the making - and focus on a broader range of pensions and financial services issues. Knowing each and every pitfall that side-lines internal teams from getting stuff over the line – he created Shula to help those teams make meaningful corporate communications happen. The rest…as they say…is history.

Prior to setting up Shula, Darren was Director of Policy at Smart Pension, where he was active in the industry lobbying for change in pensions and financial services for the benefit of members and customers. Darren joined Smart in September 2018, having previously undertaken policy-related roles at the The People's Pension, the National Association of Pension Funds (now Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association) and HM Treasury – where he headed up the pensions team between 2007 and 2010 and was closely involved in the design and implementation of the UK’s flagship auto-enrolment programme.

Darren is active within industry bodies through contributing to research, thought leadership and policy development work, and is a regular commentator in the media. He has sat on various PLSA and ABI committees, and is a member of the PLSA Policy Board. He also sits on the PMI external affairs committee, and has recently joined the AIMSE Europe Council. Darren is a governor and trustee of the independent Pensions Policy Institute.

Darren has a BSc(Econ) in Economics from Leicester University and an MSc in Economics and Econometrics from Southampton University. Outside of work, Darren’s interests include football (both ‘soccer’ and American Football), cricket and listening to live music. Darren is also attempting (with the emphasis on attempting….) to learn the piano.


We always start with a chat about your scheme or business and take a look at your strategic business plans – testing the waters before we both jump in. We can get a feel for how we’re able to support you, and you can get an idea about whether we’re the right fit for your business.

Then we’ll talk plans and budget. We’ll help you work out how you can get the most for your money – whether your focus should be on strategic marketing plans, content creation or building your public profile – or all three.

Ask questions, bounce ideas or talk specifics - we're all ears