Month: November 2018

Emerald commits to support SMME’s

At the recent 2018 Vaal SMME Conference and Exhibition, hosted by Emerald Resort & Casino and partners, exhibitors, entrepreneurs and visitors from the Sedibeng District were given the opportunity to network, collaborate and stimulate trade amongst themselves and larger corporates. “This is the first SMME exhibition that we have hosted, providing a platform for entrepreneurs to interact with industry experts, buyers and executives in order to build stronger and more profitable business networks,” says Mark Hands, Emerald Resort & Casino’s Resort Director.The event provides delegates and local SMME’s that are operating businesses in and around the area with a local, innovative networking platform where they have a chance, especially one that offers the advantage, at presenting their business to bigger corporates, while establishing additional business trade amongst each other. It also presents an opening for them to understand current business trends and forces the shaping of the local SMME sector.

Hands’ opening remarks showed his commitment to support  local business and mentioned that local businesses provide support and create job opportunities for the local community. Buying local boosts the economy and it has been proven that the money is twice as likely to stay in the local community and purchases are doubly more efficient in terms of keeping local economy alive. Entrepreneurs need to invest their time in what he calls ‘the study of gap’ – or rather, the ability to see opportunities where they don’t exist.Some of the exhibitors included NDS Chef’s Academy, Bolle Technology, Tintswalo & Engineering, The Innovation Hub, ER Signs and Safety and Thenga Online Radio with important topics covered by Phorohlo Nkadimeng (SARS Compliance), Yandisa Hene from Innovation Marketing Consultant who spoke about ‘Smart marketing ideas for SME’s on a budget’, Dr Joe (Director VUT Southern Gauteng Science and Technology Park).“We would like to thank the sponsors Eskom, Arcelor Mittal, Seriti Coal, SEDA Small Enterprise Development Agency. Emfuleni Local Municipality, SA, Gauteng Treasury, Metsimaholo Municipality, Ceramic Industries, VUT Southern Gauteng Science and Technology Park and Gauteng Enterprise Propeller GEP for getting behind this initiative,” says Walter Bause, Emerald Resort & Casino’s Finance Executive, “The event was a huge success which, for the first time, brought regional SMME’s  together in such an effort.

We look forward to seeing this important occasion and opportunity for local business growing into an even bigger event next year.”“The conversation that we must have on both sides, namely with bigger corporates and SMME’s, is how we build real entrepreneurship and sustainable business in order to stimulate the economy around the Vaal Triangle area.

This will become an annual event and while we had a great turnout, we encourage even more entrepreneurs and local business within the Sedibeng District, Metsimaholo Municipality and Emfuleni District to participate at next year’s event,” concludes Hands.

For up to date information and happenings at Emerald Resort & Casino, visitors are encouraged to stay close to their Facebook and Twitter pages, or guests can visit www.emeraldcasino.co.za for more information on any of the events mentioned here.

Emerald Resort & Casino.

Tel:                              016 982 8000

Website                       www.emeraldcasino.co.za

Facebook:                   http://www.facebook.com/Emerald.Resort.Casino

Twitter:                        https://twitter.com/emerald_resort

LinkedIn:                     https://www.linkedin.com/company/emerald-resort-&-casino/

The media needs to start questioning itself more

Following Media Freedom Week hosted by Media Monitoring Africa last week, Chris Louw, Digital Strategist at Caxton Local Newspapers says that the rise of fake news, anonymous advertising and the influence of political leaders on the media is concerning.

As a guest on the panel discussion ‘Are we “post truth” or “post journalism, and does it really matter’ Chris said that number of questions were raised, one of them being, whether or not journalism is under threat.

“Too often the media is deemed to have ulterior motives around their reporting. Due to terminology like ‘fake news’, someone like Donald Trump can look at something that is reported and if he doesn’t like it, he says it’s fake news,” says Chris. “This phenomenon is being repeated around the world. Credibility of things are being incorrectly questioned. The people who say the media has ulterior motives often have ulterior motives themselves.”

 In recent times, brand safety has been in the spotlight, along with credible journalism. Chris feels that accountability is an important solution to this problem. “The media needs to start questioning itself more and asking itself more questions,” he says.

He reiterated that one important aspect to keep in mind is the fact that the media still acts as a fourth estate, and still holds power to account. Local media publications are one example of how the media continues to act as a fourth estate, giving citizens the platform to be heard, as local media is often a first point of contact.

 “Local media should continue speaking to what they know and that’s reporting on local issues without fear of favour. If local media can maintain a standard of quality and credibility, they will be able to stand out from the rest,” he said.

He added that the solution to the current problems faced by media requires a multi-focal approach, with innovation being an important avenue.

“One of the most important things that is not spoken enough about is that we need to innovate. The days of regurgitating are gone. We need to ensure we are more involved with our communities. People don’t feel heard and local media has a massive role to play in that sense. They are the first point of reference.”

Marc du Plessis, Joint CEO of SPARK Media agrees, “Fake news is a global problem and very difficult to identify and avoid. To combat this, an easy solution is to make use of whitelisted, trusted, known publisher market places and websites. We also agree that local media has a crucial part to play in maintaining journalistic credibility, and can confidently say that our local print and online products under the Caxton banner are doing just that.”

SPARK Media

Established in 2015, SPARK Media, a division of CTP Ltd, are experts in retail and location based marketing solutions. The company owns and represents a myriad of print and digital products that deliver locally relevant, effective audiences for advertising clients. SPARK Media are Strategic Partners in Audience Research and Knowledge and offer ‘Insights that Ignite’.

On Comic Con, YouTubers and the business of gaming

Jarred Mailer-Lyons Digital Media Strategist at The MediaShop investigates how 8 million gaming South Africans spend their time.

I recently attended the Business of Gaming Forum (BOGF) in association with Comic Con South Africa, which hosted over 40,000 fans of comic related superheroes, sidekicks and villains.

Comic Con SA featured a large range of pop culture and entertainment stands at the venue that featured virtually all genres, including animation, toys, gadgets, clothing, collectible card games, table-top games, anime, video games and fantasy novels.

While Comic Con SA brought in an array of people to enjoy the festivities, the BOGF conference also brought together like-minded gamers, marketers and research analysts to discuss aspects of gaming that brands could tap into to further monetise their media investments. The line-up of speakers included both local and international experts on all matters relating to the business of gaming and ranged from Executive Director and CEO – David Sidenberg of BMI sport info, right the way through to our very own SA gaming YouTuber and Streaming influencer Grant Hinds.While gaming is still on a growth trajectory, there hasn’t been much data available to advertisers around audiences in SA and while all the keynote speakers at the BOGF were great in delivering key aspects of their presentations around gaming, BMI Sport keynote speaker – David Sidenberg captured my attention from the start.

He drew our attention to their latest research report, which highlighted that the South African gaming population totals a staggering 8 million unique users across console, mobile and desktop. These numbers are starting to become comparable to global players like YouTube, which is currently sitting at 8.74 million users in SA. That’s an increase in Esports / gaming growth of 579.1% compared to the previous year, whereas other sporting codes like gym fitness accounted for 18% growth and road running / jogging at 17.8%.

However when looking at mainstream sports in SA, soccer is showing a decline in growth by -3.5% and rugby at -3.7%. What’s even more interesting is that when comparing the growth from 2016 through to 2017, Esports now ranks as the 6th most popular participation sport amongst adults 19 years and older in South Africa.

What really resonated was when one of the speakers, Gareth Woods from Good Game Well Played, noted in his address to the audience that calling yourself a gamer is just like identifying yourself by your hobby and not many people do this – especially when it comes to light users. When speaking to light / casual players who engage in bubble popping or word puzzle games on their mobile devices, I had noticed that these users don’t realise that their 20 minutes a day is actually considered gaming. While it may be considered light gaming, they are still classified as a gamer and that is why it is important to note the differences between people who casually play for entertainment purposes vs more ‘hardcore’ type avid gamers.

So what is the difference – yes it may be quite subjective as there is no real literary article or piece of research that differentiates these users based on hours played, levels achieved or even budget spent on devices. Yet the best possible way I could describe it would be to note that the difference between an avid and casual gamer is passion, an avid gamer does not necessarily invest a longer amount of time into that hobby but certainly invests a lot of passion into it. A casual gamer plays games in much the same way a casual soccer fan really just watches the replay of the highlights from the latest soccer match and can engage in conversation with his friends. They don’t really watch the match for its sporting complexity or for the emotions it evokes but rather to keep up to date with events.

The avid gamer on the other hand is much like the soccer fan who watches soccer on TV but also enjoys going to live matches with his friends, following local and international games, knowing the names and history of each of the players on the team and of course following their scores, stats, news, fixtures and results. There is no game you can play that will automatically make you an “avid” or “casual” gamer, it all comes down to the level of passion you have for gaming.

Based on the BMI Sport research in SA, there are some key Esports fan behavioural differences when it comes to avid gamers and casual gamers on various devices. PC and console gamers share a similarity in that a higher proportion of their audiences are avid gamers with 58% on console and 65% on PC whereas casual gamers on console accounted for 34% and on PC just a mere 14%. However when looking at mobile, the causal gamer takes the lead at 51% whilst the avid gamer only accounts for 10%.

When it comes to gamers there are many misconceptions about the people who play them. These misconceptions have prevented advertisers from including gaming as part of their media mix, tending to favour social networks, messaging apps, and other, more “mainstream” digital media channels instead. However, budgets have been steadily shifting, and brands and agencies are beginning to re-think how they can align their strategy by tapping into consumers’ favourite pastime – gaming. With more than 8 million consumers in SA playing games, the array of platforms and channels within the gaming arena presents an enormous opportunity for brands and advertisers to connect with highly engaged audiences.

Esports over the years has definitely emerged as a force on the entertainment and media landscape and as a media business; it has a compelling set of attributes. In the era of distraction and short attention spans, Esports commands the focus of the youth market who are otherwise shifting away from established modes of media consumption. Given the demographic, Esports has traditionally reached a digitally native audience and is currently the only sport in South Africa in which TV is trumped by another medium.

Although there has been a hope of greater engagement from digital content via social media platforms, both sporting codes and sponsors need to remain cognizant of the most efficient and effective mediums to reach and engage with their loyal fan base. Soccer is a prime example of this, with close to 20% of loyal fans still regularly turning to radio and / or print for coverage of their favourite teams, players and competitions. The fact remains that the majority of the population still have limited, if at all any access to such digital channels, and therefore still remain dependant on the more traditional mediums to get their sports fix.

South African stars rock Emerald!

What a mind blowing weekend of entertainment this was at Emerald Resort & Casino this past weekend as two highly talented performers, Zonke and Vusi Nova packed fans into the Emerald Arena on Saturday and Sunday respectively.“Fans were spoilt for choice this weekend at Emerald Resort & Casino with two national stars in the form of Zonke and Vusi Nova both providing exceptional performances,” says Leolize Naidoo, Emerald Resort & Casino’s Events & Entertainment Manager.

Fans waited with great anticipation and when Zonke Dikana, came on stage and “wowed” them, they went wild with delight. With grace and poise, this R&B and Afro-soul singer wove a spell-binding evening of entertainment that not many people will forget. She was joined on stage by local Sedibeng favourite, Lucia Nombulelo Jakeni, Idols Session 12 runner up, who has been successfully making her voice heard throughout South Africa.Vusi Nova was ably supported by Bongani Radebe, the young, exceptionally talented and self-taught saxophonist. Ladies went weak at the knees when he started singing ‘Ndikuthandile’ while the gentlemen looked on in appreciation. In addition to this the fans were pleasantly surprised and delighted when 047_ZA and Bekezela joined Vusi Nova on stage.

In a ‘not-to-be-missed experience, queues waited on the casino floor where Vusi met with his adoring fans after the show signing autographs and interacting with his appreciative followers.

“They will be back! Due to unmistakable popular demand we will be bringing these entertainers back in the near future,” concludes Leolize. “Who will be the first artist to perform here for a record breaking third time?

Keep your eyes on our website and social media pages for all of our upcoming “One Night With”, events, information and happenings at the Resort!”

For up to date information and happenings at Emerald Resort & Casino, visitors are encouraged to stay close to their Facebook and Twitter pages, or guests can visit www.emeraldcasino.co.za for more information on any of the events mentioned here.

Emerald Resort & Casino.

Tel:                              016 982 8000

Website                       www.emeraldcasino.co.za

Facebook:                   http://www.facebook.com/Emerald.Resort.Casino

Twitter:                        https://twitter.com/emerald_resort

LinkedIn:                    https://www.linkedin.com/company/emerald-resort-&-casino/

AdColony proves the power of mobile at Smarties!

AdColony South Africa has been named Publisher of Year at the 2018 MMA South Africa Smarties awards which honours innovation and creativity, and measures the impact and success that mobile has on business. The company, which is part of the Nfinity Media Group, also walked away with a Bronze in the Product / Services Launch category for Debonairs Pizza in association with The MediaShop.  Sarah Utermark, SA country director for the Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) said: “AdColony was awarded Publisher of The Year for its role in addressing critical issues around viewability and brand safety. Both of these impact the efficacy of campaigns as without them, brands could be promoted on publishers’ sites that are either irrelevant, or are published alongside content that promotes terror and violence.

AdColony’s win was 100% backed by the judges. It was a result of a combination of work that stood out from all the submissions, but mostly as an entry that has gone over and above efforts this year – you guys clearly stood out with the judges,” she said.

Andrew Kramer, AdColony South Africa’s Managing Director adds: “Well done to the AdColony team on this amazing accolade! Thanks too to Sarah Utermark and her panel of judges for acknowledging us. We look forward to continuing our work with the MMA to build an equitable mobile video market place for advertisers, agencies and publishers.”

Globally, AdColony is one of the largest video advertising platforms with a reach of more than 1.5 billion users. Known for its unparalleled third party verified viewability rates, exclusive Instant-Play™ HD video technology and proprietary rich media formats, AdColony is passionate about helping brands connect with consumers at scale on the most important screen in their lives.

Nfinity DNA

Headed by entrepreneur Ken Varejes as CEO, Nfinity an innovation hub in the media, marketing and eventing fields. Nfinity is poised as a space for entrepreneurs to grow and better their businesses under the guidance of Ken and his growing management team, each a specialist in their own field. Nfinity currently has established shareholding and presence in the following companies: AdColony, theSALT, Whisky Live, Whizzky App, Orange Block, Reveel, theIntern-Ship, Brand a Tuk Tuk and Nfinity Digital.

Brands are so much more than just a logo

Jedd Cokayne, Business Unit Manager at The MediaShop.

As consumers start to think about their Christmas purchases and where they’re going to find the additional money to buy those presents the kids wrote to Father Christmas about, retailers start to realise that this is their last ditch effort to make target for the year. That is surely a daunting task in the current economy – stuff nightmares are made of.

However, strong brands with strong brand equity will tend to have the upper hand over this period as consumers habitually turn to brands they know and love. Over time these brands have laid a solid foundation from which to trade so no matter what they promote at this time of the year it will give them a numerical advantage over their competitors. It’s like having starting blocks at a 100m race in primary school.

Let’s talk a bit more about what brand equity is actually about. It is the value a consumer attributes to a brand. Here we must not get confused with brand value, this refers to the financial asset the company records on its balance sheet whereas brand equity is the importance of the brand to a customer. Brand value can be worked out by asking other companies what price they would be willing to pay to purchase that brand.Equity relies on consumer beliefs, beliefs based around convenience, service, value and product experience which acts as a framework to understand the power of consumer’s emotions in relation to the actual purchase of the brand.

Three questions you need to ask yourself as we head into the last quarter of the year are: who are you, what are you and what makes you different?

Who you are refers to the prominence of the brand in the consumers mind and whether or not the brand stands out. The ‘what’ is often determined by the communication derived for the brand and delivers on what the brand means and stands for. All these things are a learnt behaviour over time so that when consumers are presented with a new product or special offer from the brand the decision making process is so much easier.

Connections with consumers are the hardest to make but once there is active engagement, sharing of stories and connections with other consumers it should lead to repeat purchases and new ones from customers that are newly influenced.

Getting all these things right makes brands less vulnerable to competitor marketing, price and value wars, all part and parcel of what Christmas brings.

As we know, advertising and consumer spending is going to increase dramatically over the last quarter driving mass awareness of offerings, services and goods. This awareness will serve as an anchor for brand association, perceived quality and ultimately brand loyalty which will drive the decision making process.

The final push however, which is key in a struggling economy, is emotional capital. This is the glue that attracts consumers and converts them into loyal brand advocates.

I am going to be very interested to see what the bigger advertisers bring to the party this year, sometimes the best thinking happens in times like this.

Newsprint has to adapt to the ever changing world

Gone are the days when a newspaper publisher just offered newspapers! Thanks to technology, changing media consumption behaviour and the nature of business, newsprint has to adapt. And it has.  

Caxton Local Media is so much more than just newspapers. “We’re constantly changing and adapting, we’re not just a newsprint company anymore – we’re everything local media!” says Jaco Koekemoer, MD of Caxton Local Media & Coldset Printing. “Caxton Local Media are also specialists in social media campaigns, digital display advertising and even an events ‘builder’ within local towns.”

The recent Great Benoni Bakeoff is an excellent example of a local event managed by Caxton Local Media.  The local newspaper, The Benoni City Times, teamed up with a school in its community, sold tables to vendors, assisted with event logistics and provided pre and post event coverage.

Local media is the perfect medium to advertise similar community based events. “We provide the opportunity for local people to connect and also promote local employment. For example, at this event we made use of local sound engineers and of course our Benoni based journalists helped create a full 360 degree localised event. This recipe can be replicated in any community.”

Local printed content is effectively supplemented with digital. “The digital environment and era has provided us with so much more opportunity to engage with our communities,” explains Irma Green, Group Editor, Caxton Local Media. “We can reach people so much faster because of all the platforms we have at our disposal. In addition to that, we are a trusted medium that provides immediacy, coupled with authentic and credible reporting.”

#DidYouKnow that Caxton Local Media is now the second biggest digital publisher in South Africa? Immediate news is extremely relevant to a local community and because of this relevance the publisher now boasts over 6.5 million unique visitors. Combine that with 3.5 million households where local newspapers are delivered and advertisers and brands have access to significant reach!

Consumers go to their local newspapers and websites for local news. Retailers have branches in many of the same areas. Besides the engagement, the ability to connect residents with retailers and other businesses in a localised manner is one the biggest advantages that this advertising platform has.

In a recent Nielsen research programme* that the Publisher Research Council (PRC) made available to the industry, it was clear that reading platforms (digital and print) provides the best Return on Investment for every Rand spent – better even than Television and Radio! “The Print and Digital combination is a potent permutation, especially when there is strong evidence delivered by a truly robust survey,” says Koekemoer.

“We are a multiplatform media company for local communities,” concludes Koekemoer. “Caxton is no longer just a newsprint company, we’re local media and we’re constantly adapting – offering advertisers newspapers, social media campaigns, digital display advertising and even local events managed by our teams on the ground within that community.

There has never been a more exciting time for the publishing and newsprint industries, it’s just up to us to take it to the next level and take full advantage of it.”

*http://www.prc.za.com/2018/10/17/digital-and-print-combined-consistently-deliver-the-greatest-roi/

AMASA Appoints Memoria Masilela as Vice Chairperson

On the back of announcing its 2018/19 committee, the Advertising Media Association of South Africa (AMASA) has confirmed the appointment of committee member Memoria Masilela as Vice Chairperson, serving alongside Wayne Bishop as Chairperson.

Wayne says: “We are absolutely thrilled to announce Memoria as this year’s new Vice Chair. She has brought energy and passion to both the organisation and the industry and it is just reward for someone so dedicated to the progression of others. I think I can speak for the entire committee in congratulating Memoria and wishing her every success in her new role. Her commitment to education and transformation in this industry is also truly commendable.”

Initially joining the committee in 2016, Memoria heads the Gordon Patterson AMASA Learnership Programme (GPALP).

“Our joined purpose is to bring the next generation of excellence into existence,” she says.  “We cannot afford to keep complaining about a lack of new talent, when we have an immediate opportunity to address that issue.  AMASA is the solution to drive skills and development of the media and advertising industry.

My plan as the Vice Chair is to ensure that AMASA becomes the brand that does not wait for the future to happen, but one that boldly brings the future to the present, to ensure the success of our industry,” she says. “I want to continue to inspire the industry to prioritise on mentoring and grooming young minds.  I believe that those of us with experience have a responsibility to impart knowledge to young minds, because we can no longer complain about a lack of talent when we have not made an effort to groom new talent.”

Memoria goes on to say that “The prevalent advertising media industry practice is to recycle existing skills, instead of grooming fresh talent.  The main reason why AMASA exists in the first place is to address the very issue of talent in the industry.  Through our Education and GP-ALP portfolio we are able to provide the industry with new people, who are trained and groomed by industry experts.”

AMASA is in an exciting next growth phase and over the next 12 months plans to launch the first Online Media Management course to cater to those who are already in the industry and want to sharpen their skills. The organisation is also planning on partnering with other industry bodies aligned with its vision to address the education issues that face our country.

Another focus and passion point for Memoria is increasing transformation in the advertising industry. “I believe that we need to unlearn what we think we know about transformation.  Every generation has its own cause and what is remarkable about our generation is that we are finally addressing the core of our current cause, diversity.  As we engage more and more on the issue of inclusion, we begin to allay existing “fears of the unknown”.

Our dream is to exist in a conscious industry that is not only concerned with advertising as a form of generating revenue, but one that uses it as a vehicle to change mind-sets and unlock consumer’s minds about how unlimited we really are. We have the capacity to lead better lives and fight against poverty and all the social ills that exists in our society.

We are not in the most influential industry by a coincidence, we are chosen for a task to challenge the status quo of our country and it all starts with making selfless and fearless choices – and I believe that as AMASA we are up to that task.”