Digital News South Africa

#IABInsightsSeries: Offline and online digital marketing

On 22 July, IAB is planning to host their 28th episode of their #IABInsights series. This time, the overall theme of the discussion will be 'Integrated Offline and Online Digital Marketing'.
Ansa Leighton and Franscoe Bouwer
Ansa Leighton and Franscoe Bouwer

In preparation for this event, we spoke with two of the four speakers - Ansa Leighton and Franscoe Bouwer.

Leighton is a digital marketer with 20 years’ experience in marketing - the last 12 being specifically focused on digital marketing. After completing a formal education in digital strategy and gaining footing in the agency world, she was granted the opportunity to help clients understand and implement digital solutions in order to scale their business.

Bouwer is the marketing manager for Castle Lite. Highly motivated, driven and in-love with beer, he’s passionate about growing brands in Africa. “I have work and living experience in the last frontier of CPG growth, Nigeria, as well as 11 other African markets,” he said.

Bouwer has spent the last four years setting up premium brands for future growth, as well as delivering award-winning work like the first ever Cannes Lions for Tanzania. He currently leads the communications and positioning of Castle Lite.

Here, they tell us more about the theme of the episode, key insights to look forward to and key learning experiences we can expect...

What is the key theme or message of your talk?

Leighton: Maximising the power of data for seamless and meaningful brand experiences.

The connected consumer seeks a seamless, personalised shopping experience, regardless of where they transact. There are different motivations for shopping both online and offline, and it is the brand's responsibility to cater for the needs of their audience at each touchpoint.

I understand this to be a challenge for brands, with so many elements to consider. This is especially challenging during a time when there was an unpredicted surge in online shopping brought on by the pandemic in 2020, and the increasingly more complex data-privacy legislation on top of the diminishing of 3rd party cookies. Brands need to re-evaluate the data they capture and how they put the data to good use in order to serve their customers lawfully.

We look at the elements of your offline to online ecosystem and what data can be used to build meaningful relationships with your customers in an omni-channel environment.

Bouwer: The world’s first temperature based media trading platform.

As modern marketers, our jobs include finding creative and innovative solutions to solve consumer problems. The days of doing cool work for ourselves are gone. We are only as good as the problem we solve; our worth is in the creativity we use to solve it.

Talk us through some of the key insights that determined which changes, updates, constants will be happening in the digital advertising industry in 2021.


  • Brought on by the pandemic, "living online" has become the "new normal". In fact, a report from GWI states that South Africans spend an average of 10 hours online per day. Consumers are becoming more concerned about their privacy as they conveniently turn to e-commerce. The future of marketing depends on the legislation put in place to safeguard consumer data, which means businesses will have to reimagine how they collect, store and analyse consumer data.

  • With the demise of third party cookies, and the increased cost of customer acquisition, it means customer development and retention is more important than ever. Retailers need to consider the entire customer journey and deliver a consistent, seamless shopping experience across many touchpoints. This requires data-aggregation and quick activation strategies, where "headless commerce" brings the required flexibility and consistency in a shopping experience.


  • Consumer wokeness is real – Consumers are so consciously aware of every piece of content they consume. They smell advertising a mile away and are more empowered than ever to avoid it.
  • Context over content – Where we reach people, what message are we getting across and what does it mean to them should outweigh the cosmetics and treatment of what your creativity looks like. Apps like TikTok and Instagram have saturated production barriers, production lead-time and quality. Everyone can make good content if they understand the context in which they make it, who their audience is and what they want to hear.

  • Understanding media behaviour is as important as understanding media platforms. We have spent years in tertiary, studying and understanding media platforms. Have we invested the same amount of time understanding the behaviour of consumers in their consumption of the media? Passive media consumption is a real thing and our metrics do not take this into consideration.

What one main call to action would you advise your fellow industry colleagues at this time to help companies who are looking to beat the benchmark in digital advertising and create great work that exceeds business goals?

Leighton: Invest in your customer data and integrate your business data; break down the silos to unify your business and rather build teams and processes around your customer's needs instead of your individual products.

Bouwer: Solve a problem. Why are you doing what you are doing? Is it cool or is it actually closing a gap your brand can credibly own? Problems can differ from customer, consumer and retailer. If you put your energy into understanding their insights and solving credible problems for your brand – you will succeed, and benchmarks will be smashed.

Please share one key learning from 2020 that you have personally (or professionally) taken on board, that you believe will assist others to navigate the future of work as we (are getting to) know it.

Leighton: Evolution has proven that, in order to survive, there is only one way forward: to embrace change, showing resilience and adaptability whilst being agile in finding new innovative ways to replace old conventions.

Bouwer: Learn, unlearn and learn again. I have drastically underestimated how much consumer trends have shifted and fast-forwarded. Ignorance towards the reality that the world we knew in 2019 is still relevant, will hurt you. Learn and unlearn things every day.

The IAB SA has taken its Insight Series online to provide 60 minutes of insights, featuring fellow and future industry leaders, on subjects selected by IAB members and the industry at large to make better digital decisions. Episode 28 is sponsored by Incubeta and brought to you in partnership with Everlytic, Gumtree and Bizcommunity. The 2021 IAB Insight Series is also approved for 2 CPD points at CMSA-level under marketing, by the Marketing Association of South Africa. To attend this episode on Integrating Offline and Online Digital Marketing on 22 July 2021, you can register for free here. Episode 28 is open to the full industry to attend and also includes a key feature on the critical #ThisIsUs campaign with David Wingfield, managing executive Brand and Marketing Absa.

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