"There are huge audiences to reach and increased sales to be achieved," says Mark Knocker, MD of Marnox Media, an independent strategic media buying and advertising sales representative company.
But with unique opportunities come unique challenges. So, the first step is finding the right partner with unrivalled knowledge of the media landscape.
Think local, especially if you’re global
Marketers have tried to copy and paste international campaigns in Africa without success. At best, they don’t connect with their market. At worst, they are even offensive.
"Of course, successful campaigns tailor their messaging," Knocker continues, "But remember, it’s also about the channels you choose." The medium is just as important as the message.
Knocker lists some of the challenges that marketers or business owners face when trying to advertise in Africa, including a lack of trust. ‘How do you know that your ad ran?’ he asks, ‘Or how do you know who that radio station or newspaper actually reaches?’
Often, people are also unsure whether the media rates they’re offered are fair. "Nothing beats research and on-the-ground knowledge, which is why at Marnox Media, we’re always travelling across Africa."
It’s who (and what) you know
It’s all about people and insights.
Although Marnox Media has worked with over 1000 media owners over the past 20 years from television, radio, newspapers, online and many outdoor sites across Africa, it always comes down to relationships and experience.
"It’s about being dependable and relying on the long-standing relationships we’ve established," Knocker elaborates. "This is a fast-moving industry, so we need to have a quick turnaround time."
"If this is unchartered territory for your brand, there’s no need to fly blind," Knocker concludes.