Relativ Media celebrates second birthday, looks ahead

Maintaining positive business growth in today’s economy is a tough call for any business, even more so in a competitive category like the out of home industry. Relativ Media, a dynamic out of home media business that offers marketers opportunities in prime locations, celebrates its second birthday this month as Relativ Media. MD Brett Tucker looks in the rear-view mirror at what has passed and what lies ahead for the company. 
“It’s been a great ride so far, and as with any growing business we’ve had to adjust our resources to keep up with our incredible growth spurt over the last 18 months,” says Brett. “We’ve been extremely fortunate to have grown from a small two-man team to a staff of just under 30 people today. 
Over the past two years we’ve introduced various media offerings to our clients in the outdoor, digital out-of-home, mall, airport, and ambient space, along with multiple non-traditional offerings from student residence ownership, the Neighbourgoods Market, Spaza point of sale initiatives, the Putco bus network and a very exciting bike sharing platform that has just been launched with more to come.” 
To strengthen its market share, the company has entered a few strategic joint ventures with other outdoor suppliers. “Worth special mention is an offering that we’ve aptly termed The Big Box,” says Brett. “It’s a brilliant hybrid of a retail outlet and advertising platform.” 
“We have worked hard to put the right team and people in place, and are now geared for continued growth in this very exciting space. We are continuously looking for good, trustworthy and honest operators, because these are the individuals that drive the culture of the business, regardless of the company’s financial success.”
Relativ Media was appointed by Samsung to assist with the launch of both the S7 and S8 Galaxy phones, both of which were a great success. “The talkabability factor was incredible and the take up of both the S7 and S8 on launch exceeded expectations,” says Brett. “The team did an amazing job in executing both these projects with short lead times and a large amount of pressure to deliver.”
“We love getting our teeth stuck into innovative campaigns while dealing with great clients and agency partners that keep us inspired to continuously deliver on exceptional ideas that exceed their objectives.
When we started this business, we wanted to disrupt the way OOH is both practiced and perceived in the industry, and to date we’re pleased with the progress we’ve made, but at the same time we know there is still a long way to go. We certainly still have a great deal to learn from both local and international trends, but at the same time we’re absolutely looking forward to what the next few years will bring.”

Coca-Cola back in the Mass Market

Coca-Cola has been re-establishing its OOH presence in the metro township and rural arena on an impressive scale this year. A national holding has been built up and promotes the brand’s iconic nature to strengthen Coca-Cola’s connection with South Africa’s LSM B & C consumers. This article takes a closer look at what Coca-Cola has been doing right on mass market OOH in 2017.

“Coca-Cola is effectively harnessing the power of those stalwart mass market OOH media types that have traditionally delivered excellent value”, says Peter Lindstrom, Executive: Sales, Marketing, and Marketing Services at Primedia Outdoor. “An informed decision to invest in cost effective mass market media types is giving the brand maximum bang for its buck.”

The FMCG business has always been and still remains a volume-driven industry, and experienced marketers will guard market share jealously in a challenging economic climate. Hard-pressed consumers cannot afford to waste money on products that are pitched as being almost as good as the real McCoy, but end up not making the grade. Hence the importance of brand stature to reassure consumers that they are investing their hard-earned cash wisely.

Judging by the data, Coca-Cola has taken a “back-to-basics” angle with its OOH strategy and its grassroots approach on the OOH front shows that it takes the mass market segment seriously. The latest Outdoor Auditors’ report confirms that Coca-Cola enjoys a substantial presence across LSM B & C markets and according to the figures, Coca-Cola features as the leading soft drinks advertiser on OOH in South Africa. 

“Not only has Coca-Cola always been a key and strategic player in the OOH market, but we have seen a substantial shift in dominance from our previous audit” says Erik Warburg, Director Outdoor Auditors.

“Coca-Cola is an iconic brand and it deserves the status of category leader in the soft drinks market segment”, according to Jacques Olivier of OTS Media, the independent OOH specialist responsible for Coca-Cola’s OOH campaign. “Working on a brand of this stature is a big responsibility, and naturally requires that the best solutions are found to achieve the communications objectives.”

“Given prevailing market conditions, every media owner out there is fighting for a slice of the advertising budget. Marketers are currently spoilt for choice when it comes to OOH media options, and good value can be found if you know what to look for,” says Olivier.

Obtaining best value has been a central consideration not only for Coca-Cola, but also for brands such as Sprite and Fanta that needed to communicate effectively despite tighter budgetary parameters.

“Fanta’s usage of smaller formats like Store Fascias and Consumer Ads has given the brand a truly national footprint at a very reasonable investment level. In fact, Fanta now has 100% share of voice on our store fascia holding comprising several hundred sites. This lets Fanta dominate at the consumer coalface and close to point of purchase”, Lindstrom says.

So what would the right OOH opportunities be to effectively reach the mass market? Olivier believes it is important to separate the wheat from the chaff “because a number of media owners may think they have a good proposition for delivering a mass market audience but often the value for money relationship simply isn’t there.”

“Probably the single most important aspect in determining value is having an intimate knowledge of the marketplace. This is a skill that is becoming a lost art on agency side because there is simply no substitute for hitting the road and selecting sites from behind the steering wheel, and not many OOH media planners nowadays follow this approach,” Olivier added.

Lindstrom is bullish about the prospects of the traditional OOH mass market media types, despite the growth of digital OOH. “High construction costs may hamper large-scale new development of traditional mass market billboards, but Primedia already has a vast existing holding that offers advertisers a comprehensive national footprint and this puts us firmly ahead of new market entrants.”

“Campaign outdoor isn’t always perceived as a sexy medium by marketers and digital is certainly a growth area within OOH. But traditional static billboards remain a reliable workhorse that delivers unbeatable value time and again. It’s a testimony to the intrinsic value of these formats when I see a brand like Coca-Cola embracing this medium again and making it work for them”, says Lindstrom.


Tractor Outdoor partners with Table Mountain Aerial Cable way

Tractor Outdoor, in partnership with Table Mountain Aerial Cableway Company, has recently undertaken a complete rebranding of Cape Town’s iconic cable cars. Mastercard South Africa has entered into an agreement to sponsor certain branding elements at the Cableway.

Voted as one of the New 7 Natural Wonders of the world in 2011, Table Mountain is also one of the most visited tourist destinations in Africa.

Table Mountain Aerial Cableway Company takes pride in providing approximately one million visitors from all over the world a world-class experience. The Cableway itself has, to date, transported over 26 million visitors to the summit of Table Mountain. Each of the two cable cars is able to carry 65 visitors every 4-5 minutes, enabling almost 800 visitors to enjoy the trip every hour.

“Table Mountain Cableway is one of the most iconic tourist attractions in the world, and we are extremely pleased and proud to be involved in a project of this size and stature. We started our business in 2001 in Cape Town and we are proud to now be the number one supplier of OOH solutions in the region” says Simon Wall, Managing Director of Tractor Outdoor “Tractor Outdoor is excited to be partnering with a brand that is synonymously thought of as one of the most attractive and majestic destinations in South Africa, and looks forward to providing a fresh perspective with spectacular, high-impact branding experiences for visitors to enjoy”.

Face First Media acquires the Durdoc House Sky Sign

Face First Media has just finalised its acquisition of another mega Sky Sign in the Durban Inner City. The Durdoc House Sky Sign of approximately 400 square meters in size, will further strengthen its strategic holding in the Inner City following the successful acquisition and relaunch of the Hisense Nedbank House Sky Sign earlier this year. This highly visible sign has a gateway presence and is directly noticeable for inbound traffic entering the CBD directly from the N3.

“In line with Durban’s vision to become the most liveable City by 2030 and the Metro’s focus on Inner City rejuvenation, we are also expanding our footprint in the inner city by focussing on high impact signs through amplifying their visual presence” says Stevan Wilken, Face First Media’s CEO.

“While there is a tendency for media owners to follow the decentralisation impulse towards the new and expanding economic nodes in Umhlanga and Ballito, one should not underestimate the critical mass of the Inner City and the new face of the heart of the City becoming visible through investments in the Point Waterfront, Film City, TSOGO Sun extension of the hotel and casino area and the upgrading of a number of commercial buildings” Stevan rightly points out.

Sky Signs are sometimes referred to as the “captain jewels in the carcanet” that offer valuable and extraordinary charisma to the aesthetic experience of Inner Cities. “For us these eye-catching advertising offerings have a vital role to play by animating the skyline and offering bold advertising exposure for impactful messaging in the heart of the city”, concludes Wilken.

New Joburg By-laws probably only in 2018

The draft new by-law that was published for public comment in May of this year will only be promulgated in 2018 to coincide with the calendar year. Currently, the draft by-law is under consideration in light of the numerous objections that were received.

The draft by-laws created a strong reaction from the industry where various role-players raised multiple objections including some provisions that are regarded as unconstitutional. These objections were all lodged with the City and they are currently under consideration.

Launching the City of Johannesburg’s monthly clean-up campaign, A re Sebetseng, the Executive Mayor Herman Mashaba said the municipality will start to enforce stronger by-laws.

“I was struck by the amount of illegal advertising, dumping, and drilling that was taking place in the area,” Mashaba said.

Once this process of considering the objections is finalized, the draft by-laws must be resubmitted to a full council meeting for its final approval. This is not expected before October of this year with its effective date probably 1 January 2018.

MyCiTi campaign a win for African Extracts

Transit Ads™ has exclusive advertising rights to MyCiTi buses in Cape Town, providing an opportunity for brands who want to stand out within the city. The bus network clocks 75 000 commuter journeys per day, so advertising on this medium provides visibility and frequency.

“Buses are giant billboards that have the ability to showcase brand messaging in areas where other forms of out of home are limited; or the opposite, where cities are cluttered with various forms of advertising. For African Extracts, buses directly and successfully target their audience,” says Hugh Wilson, national sales manager: Transit Ads™.

Absa hops onboard City Sightseeing

Exploring new ways to reach South Africans out-of-home, Absa hopped onboard City Sightseeing buses to advertise their new rewards programme.

The red double-decker City Sightseeing buses are world-renowned; these iconic open-topped buses act as travelling billboards and have an active and established presence taking locals and tourists to experience some of the best-loved locations in the city and surrounds. Watch the experience here.

The Absa rewards message is simple, as an Absa Rewards member, you get cash rewards, on all your debit, cheque and credit card purchases, no matter where you shop. What makes this unique is that you earn real cash not just points which means you get paid to sightsee which is even better!

Tag 8 is proud to partner with City Sightseeing bringing brand partners onboard and offering external and internal branding, Wi-Fi advertising and activations.

Outdoor Network’s burning billboard keeps it legal

British American Tobacco South Africa (BATSA) and Joe Public United have teamed up with Outdoor Network in association with Beith Digital to create an eye-popping ‘burning billboard’ that draws attention to the problem with smoking illegal cigarettes.

Clearly visible in a prime location, the Johannesburg billboard’s special effects are entertaining and educating a highly sought-after audience for the week of 21-25 August, as part of BATSA’s broader ‘Keep It 100’ campaign. The tagline ‘Smoking illegal cigarettes burns homes’ can be taken literally but also implies that households will be affected because illegal cigarette manufacturers do not pay taxes and therefore stunt social development. The aim of the campaign is to alert consumers to the fact that smoking illegal cigarettes can have dire consequences for both families and the country as a whole.

“The cleverly constructed ‘burning billboard’, which is not really burning at all and complies with the city’s safety regulations, is manned by a special effects crew and a health and safety representative. After a week, the ‘burning billboard’ will be replaced with a static billboard for a month to reinforce the message.

Outdoor Network believes the innovative billboard, which has garnered a lot of media attention, demonstrates how custom-designing for OOH can deliver a ‘burning message’ with optimal creativity. Media such as: Radio 702, online news portals EWN and Times Live and The Citizen newspaper, to name but a few.

Impact is created through visual effects and shows how a simple yet powerful campaign can drive engagement and generate debate. This premium location, situated near the off-ramp to Barry Hertzog road in Johannesburg and seen from Empire Road, delivers maximum audience numbers, reaching 583,075 commuters, with 3,338,136 impacts and an average frequency of six per month (which amounts to approximately 6% of Gauteng’s population) according to ROAD.

By drawing attention to illegal cigarettes, BATSA hopes to drive consumers to smoke legal cigarettes and ‘Keep It 100’ – a phrase that means ‘keep it real, keep it honest’. To further encourage this, BATSA will be offering consumers a premium red cigarette in each of its boxes, signifying that they are ‘smoking legal’, which they hope will become a status symbol.

The ‘burning billboard’ shows that out-of-the-box thinking can go a long way towards increasing impact, recall and engagement simultaneously.

Primedia Outdoor awarded Ekurhuleni Metro ad signs tender for a second time

The Ekurhuleni Municipality has awarded a tender for the design, manufacture, supply, erection and maintenance of 340 street-name advertising signs to Primedia Outdoor for the next four years.

The municipality oversees the East Rand of Gauteng, which extends from Germiston in the west to Springs in the east and Nigel in the south and includes Kempton Park, Boksburg, Benoni, Brakpan, Edenvale and Bedfordview.

Primedia Outdoor held the street-name advertising tender from 2013, but had to re-submit when it expired in July 2016. The new tender will see Primedia Outdoor’s responsibility for the Ad-lite signs extending to 30 June 2021.

“We are delighted to have won this tender for the second time in a row,” says Kennedy Tshabalala, Executive: Rights & Development. “It’s really a win-win situation for Primedia Outdoor and Ekurhuleni because Primedia has over many years become specialist supplier of Ad-Lites in the municipality and is therefore well positioned to meet its contractual obligation.”

The optimally located signs carry the added benefit of displaying street names and as they are illuminated brand advertisements are clearly visible day and night. The signs work particularly well to advertise the location of fast food outlets, banks and ATMs, retailers, petrol stations, hotels and motels, hardware stores and car dealerships to drive customers in-store.

The MediaShop to host OOH workshop for SMMEs

As part of The MediaShop’s ongoing engagements with media owners and partners, the agency is hosting an Out of Home (OOH) workshop on Thursday 7 September at the Bryanston Country Club.

Specifically, the purpose of this workshop is to interact with SMMEs within the Out of Home sector to discuss the state of the OOH landscape and give advice to media owners on how to better interact with the agency and hopefully grow their business in the process.

“We want to continuously find better ways of working with various media owners and specifically SMME’s. We hope that this workshop will give insights on the critical ingredients of success within this sector, and also share our views on where we see the future of OOH,” says Johannesburg’s MD Kgaugelo Maphai.

“We will have speakers from The MediaShop, a client, and Michele Munro and her team from MMAP addressing the audience to cover various aspects relating to OOH.”

Craig Wallis, Business Unit Manager and Head of Outdoor at The MediaShop adds: “We will begin with an introduction of our internal OOH team and offer insights into the processes that need to be followed within TMS, examples of great campaigns, spotting great sites and what we expect from our media owner partners.”

The Outdoor Measurement Council (OMC)/ROAD/Quantum studies will also be touched on as well as what SMMEs as a collective can do to motivate advertisers to book with them.

“We’re looking forward to this engagement with OOH SMMEs, and we’re confident that at the end of our session, the media owners will have a much clearer picture on what it takes to work with us and to move their businesses forward,” says Kgaugelo.