Country of extremes
SA both leads and trails in online marketing
OGILVY INTERACTIVE business director Marc Crerar has no doubt digital marketing is taking off. Massively. “Expect a huge broadband acceleration,” he predicts. “About 60% of our advertising campaigns now have a digital element. Two years ago it was 10%. These days we’re pulled into every single campaign brief. We give them digital solutions whether they ask for them or not.”
Ogilvy Interactive’s staff of 20 acts as a digital service centre to all the group divisions. A characteristic of digital marketing is that it usually involves interaction with other channels. Digital elements played a major part in Ogilvy’s highly integrated (360 degree is the term they use) campaign for Channel O that won a Loerie Grand Prix.
“Digital is the glue that provides the adhesion between all the communications channels,” says Crerar. “The SA market is full of terrific polarised realities. We have the world’s fifth highest rate of web access through mobile. We’re in the top 20 on Facebook. But you can still reach 85% of the population with one TV commercial.
“This is a country of extremes and anomalies. We’re leaders in some areas, trailing in others. Many clients are unfamiliar with this space. They don’t understand the potential. Our mission is expanding the brand experience online – using the magic of a new medium. Television is a push mechanism that doesn’t work online. You’ve got to encourage and communicate. You’ve got to create content that engages people. People share video clips on their cellphone but won’t share an ad.
“Using digital you can play a game, watch videos, make airline or cinema bookings, design a T-shirt and vote for the best of the rest and run a customer relationship programme. But whatever the medium, you still need a great idea.”
A major attraction of the medium is its measurability. In the KFC Chic Flicks campaign, tickets to the movie premieres were sold out online within four hours of Website launch. The events were exceptionally successful and there were more than 500 entries into the “Make your own twister” online competition.
Globally, Ogilvy was among the first agencies to offer a dedicated digital capability.