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Sunday Times GenNext Awards' winners announced

The 18th Sunday Times GenNext Awards Overall Coolest Brand award has gone to Nike - its 9th consecutive Overall Coolest Brand award.
Image supplied. The 18th Sunday Times GenNext Awards’ winners
Image supplied. The 18th Sunday Times GenNext Awards’ winners

The brand also bagged the Coolest Clothing Brand and Coolest Footwear Brand awards. BMW placed overall second, while adidas moved into overall third spot from its 7th place position in 2021.

The winners across 70 categories of the Sunday Times GenNext survey, conducted by Yellowwood, were announced during a hybrid event celebration on 15 September 2022.

Barometer of the youth

The Sunday Times GenNext survey is a barometer of what South Africa’s youth find on-trend and aspirational, and delivers insights that are valued by brand management, advertising, and marketing professionals.

The 2022 survey polled 5,933 young people aged 8-13 years (Tweens), 14 to 18 years (Teens), 18 to 24 years (Young Adults), and 25 to 30 years (Young Professionals).

This year also saw the introduction of new categories reflecting rapid innovation and consumer technology adoption: Coolest Online Accommodation Booking Sites (winner: Trivago) and Coolest Savings & Investment Platform (winner: Capitec).

Another new category was introduced to reflect young people’s strong desire to make a difference: Coolest Brand That Cares about the Community (winner: KFC).

In addition to polling consumer brand preference, the survey also polls youth on the personal brands of celebrities, entertainers and sportspeople. World Cup-winning Springbok rugby captain Siya Kolisi was once again named Coolest Local Sportsperson, while Somizi Mhlongo was awarded as the Coolest Online Influencer.

MetroFM once again triumphed as the Coolest Radio Station, with The River being the Coolest Local TV Programme.

A significant birthday

Eben Gewers, head of sales at Arena Holdings – which owns Sunday Times GenNext – says this year marks the 18th year of the GenNext survey.

“This is a significant birthday and one we intend to celebrate in style, especially since we are now able to host the in-person event again. We are absolutely looking forward to this as well as the feedback from our various marketing partners on the insights delivered by the youth.”

Nolitha Mkhwanazi, head of youth strategy at Yellowwood adds that the Sunday Times GenNext Youth Behaviour Report offers brand custodians a cheat sheet on the South African youth.

“The Report allows us to track the shifts in attitudes and needs satisfaction from 2021 giving a richer perspective into the hearts and minds of young people. It is a fact-based report that helps drive your brand's ambitions using data from over 5,000 young people.”

The Sunday Times GenNext supplement will be published in the Sunday Times on 18 September 2022.

The winners

Coolest Bank: Capitec Bank
Coolest Cellphone: Samsung
Coolest Clothing store: Mr Price
Coolest Domestic airlines: Fly Safair
Coolest Clothing brand: Nike
Coolest Hotel: Sun City Hotel
Coolest Shopping mall: Mall of Africa
Coolest Online store: Takealot
Coolest Company to work for: Google
Coolest Telecoms provider: Telkom
Coolest Tinned food: Koo
Coolest Public transport brand: Uber
Coolest Motor vehicle: Mercedes Benz
Coolest stationary store: CNA
Coolest petrol station: Engen
Coolest entertainment place: Sun City
Coolest Console / mobile game: Fifa
Coolest Technology brand: Apple
Coolest Weekly newspaper: Daily Sun
Coolest Ice-cream: Magnum
Coolest Campaign targeted at the youth: Love Life campaign
Coolest TV channel: Mojo Love
Coolest Local TV programme/series: The River
Coolest Cartoon show: Mr Bean
Coolest Kids TV channel: Cartoon Network 301
Coolest Advertising medium: TikTok
Coolest Music store/website/streaming: Spotify
Coolest Radio station: Metro FM 96.4
Coolest Breakfast cereal: Jungle Oats
Coolest Grocery store: Woolworths
Coolest Fast Food Places: McDonalds
Coolest Restaurant: Spur Steak Ranch
Coolest Chocolate: KitKat
Coolest TV streaming/content channels/platform: Netflix
Coolest Online influencer: Somizi Mhlongo / Somgaga
Coolest Local sportsperson: Siya Kolisi
Coolest Radio DJ: DJ Fresh / Thato Sikwane
Coolest Local celeb: Trevor Noah
Coolest Brand overall: Nike
Coolest Skincare product: Nivea
Coolest College: TVET College
Coolest Toy store: Toys R Us
Coolest Food delivery app: Uber Eats
Coolest Fitness app: Virgin Active App
Coolest Insurance company: Old Mutual
Coolest Digital learning platform: YouTube
Coolest Loyalty programme: Pick n Pay Smart Shopper
Coolest Sauce: Nando’s Hot Sauce
Coolest Hot beverage: Starbucks Coffee
Coolest Cold beverage: Coke
Coolest Shower gel: Nivea Shower Gel
Coolest Alcohol: Jägermeister’s
Coolest Online accommodation booking site: Trivago
Coolest Brand that cares about the community: KFC
Coolest Savings and investment platform: Capitec
Coolest Energy product: Red Bull
Coolest Snack: Doritos
Coolest University: University of Cape Town
Coolest Sweets: Maynards
Coolest Haircare products: Dark & Lovely
Coolest Spreads: Rama
Coolest Social media app: TikTok
Coolest Soap bar: Protex
Coolest Feminine Hygiene Product: Kotex
Coolest Specialist health store: Clicks
Coolest Makeup brand: Avon
Coolest Gaming console: PlayStation console
Coolest Male deodorant: Nivea
Coolest Female deodorant: Nivea

The full list of winners and rankings can be found here.

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