With the Eastern Cape being the current Covid-19 epicentre, Algoa FM is using the power of radio and digital platforms to educate and warn its audience about the disease.
The biggest media house in the Eastern Cape, Algoa FM, broadcasts from the Garden Route to the Wild Coast and into the Karoo, and also boasts a strong and growing online presence in the region.
“As a responsible corporate citizen we are using all of our platforms to get the message across, that this virus means business and are reminding people of how to avoid being infected,” says Algoa FM managing director Alfie Jay.
There has been a surge in Covid-19 cases in the two metros of Nelson Mandela Bay and Buffalo City, which has seen hospitals struggling to cope.
“If that is not concerning enough, there are warnings that the next epicentre will be in the Garden Route, which forms part of our broadcast footprint,” says Jay.
Together with his management team, Jay took the decision to launch an urgent informational campaign after discussing the matter with representatives from the chambers of commerce in George, Nelson Mandela Bay and Buffalo City.
“I believe it is our civic duty to stand tall as Algoa FM and to take the lead for the sake of our people and our economy,” he says.
The Algoa FM campaign includes:
- Ongoing news coverage both on air and online
- Pre-recorded messages from the Nelson Mandela Bay Business Chamber and the municipality encouraging the public to be responsible
- Ad-hoc mentions by on-air personalities about staying safe
- Personalised video messages by presenters on their social media platforms to encourage their fans and listeners to be responsible and to stay safe by observing protocols
- Interviews on the Breakfast Show with the three main business chambers in the Algoa FM footprint, as well as some of the largest employers in the region. These interviews are also being recycled on air and packaged as podcasts
- RDS (radio data system) messages on car radios stating “Sanitise often. Wear a mask. Observe social distancing, Be safe!”
“Like it or not, it is Covid fatigue which has contributed to this resurgence in cases and our audience needs to be reminded through a ‘shock factor’ of sorts,” says Jay.
He believes it is important for business leaders in the Eastern Cape to work closely together to counter the effects of the virus on people and the local economy.
“Most of us are currently engaged in strategic planning for the year ahead. Any business currently preparing a strategy to grow and build forward momentum is faced with the same challenge: We’re planning for a post-Covid scenario, while simultaneously considering the risks and challenges associated with the unknown.
“Other than the knowledge that we will do our utmost to be there for all of our stakeholders, we simply do not know what the future holds,” he says.