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the media radio annual digital

10 Radio Annual The long talked about transformation charter and the BE codes provide a unique opportunity for all players to engage openly on what needs to be done, in order to rebuild the glory of the industry and to compete favourably with other industries for new talent, believes Maphiri. “The developments around the audience measurement instruments are quite encouraging. We would continue to contribute, as a business, to the best of our abilities in shaping and modelling a more representative and fairer instrument that is anchored on the new media consumption patterns prevalent today,” affirms Maphiri. The South African regulatory and legislative frameworks place a heavy burden on SABC Radio’s ability to contest on an equal footing with its competitors, says General Manager, Radio Sales at the SABC, Eugene Zwane. “These impediments are difficult to mitigate against in the short term. We have come to accept that the playing field is not even. Some of our stations have to carry above average pieces of regulated content that are not commercially appealing,” says Zwane. However, he is confident about the corporation’s position for the future. “The SABC is in the process of investing significantly in its portfolio of digital assets. Given the scale of our digital portfolio and the scope of work involved, it has taken a little longer, but we will be supremely competitive in that space in the near future.” Asked what he would change about the industry, he points to the industry’s weak appetite for vernacular advertising. “Broadening the appeal of and increasing the appetite for advertising in the vernacular is key for the growth of SABC Radio’s revenue share. Vernacular creative is still a challenge for most advertisers because of the language barrier, the fear of the unknown and challenges associated with approving copy and executions in languages one does not understand.” Zwane explains that only 25% of South Africans speak English at home, which for him, is clear evidence that South African advertisers are over-investing in English ads. “We’re seeing more and more advertisers embracing language advertising and working closely with the SABC ALS stations (including RSG) and RAP and Creative to make vernacular advertising easier to create and easier to understand. SABC Radio Sales will continue to resource RAP and Creative to make their services accessible to as many clients as possible.” The DTT dispensation, he says, will rearrange South African television viewing patterns. Audience fragmentation will be significant, and so will revenue fragmentation in the television space. Advertisers are going to struggle to deal with the extent of the fragmentation and will rely largely on radio for stable audience delivery. Wanele Mngomezulu, MD, MSG Group Sales, says there has been a general decline in terms of expected service from media owners and this can be attributed to various facets, such as changing economic times and reduced budgets, which clash head-on with increased deliverables. The increase in competition translates into a demand for faster response times. “There are lots of interesting changes in the local market but my interest is the potential shareholder changes on some of SA’s media assets. New shareholders breathe new energy and expectation resulting in further increased competitive space. “We have to be partners across the entire value chain or ecosystem and in this way it becomes a win-win for everyone. It’s a tough market but there are salient opportunities worth capitalising on.” Mngomezulu asserts that the notion of global agency alignment will remain a challenge. “Two big pieces of local business went out to pitch in March and April, and the key determination was the presence of global agencies. When are we going to support our local agencies?” Malani van Huyssteen, Head of Sales at Primedia Broadcasting, says radio’s share of all media spend is very healthy in South Africa and much higher than the UK or the USA. However, the current economic climate has resulted in many clients Wanele Mngomezulu We have to be partners across the entire value chain or ecosystem and in this way it becomes a win-win for everyone. It’s a tough market but there are salient opportunities worth capitalising on. – Mngomezulu See page 12 n


the media radio annual digital
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