TONY’S LAST WORD NOT-SO-GREAT OUTDOORS
IF LAST WEEK’S Ohmsa awards are a true indication, outdoor advertising in South Africa is in deep trouble. The standard was frankly appalling, to the extent the judges didn’t make awards in several categories. The overall winner – a sockcovered bus advertising Omo’s capacity to wash 5 000 socks with one box – was earlier this year, but I’m not sure that can be taken as an endorsement of its Ohmsa win. After all, something deemed worthy only of finalist status then has now been named best of show.
The bus with 5 000 socks glued to it certainly attracted attention as it went showboating through SA’s towns and townships. At its first stop there was a snatch the socks off the bus – and getting away with 500 of them. Attention, yes – but was it good advertising?
Though the Ohmsa Awards were set up specifically to encourage better outdoor advertising, that doesn’t seem to have worked, despite offering the bartered for billboard space with Toyota.
Which raises questions about the stantial financial value. In the ego-driven business of advertising, it isn’t necessary awards for the glory. But the amount of glory depends on the credibility of the awards.
Unfortunately, there’s another group of people who probably feel a little disgruntled with the outcome of the Ohmsas: the sponsors. You don’t get much value from sponsoring an award that isn’t presented. ¤