SAA takes off as Ned­bank makes a bo­gey

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - MEDIA& MARKETING - BREN­DAN SEERY

AMID all the crit­i­cism and the clear mess at South African Air­ways (SAA), there are still good things hap­pen­ing. I, for one, have no prob­lem fly­ing on the air­line and have had far worse ex­pe­ri­ences on other air­lines, both do­mes­ti­cally and in­ter­na­tion­ally.

Seek­ing out the good sto­ries to tell – for a brand, or for a coun­try (No 1 is at least right on that) – is a highly ef­fec­tive im­age builder and mar­ket­ing tool.

But those sto­ries have to be in­ter­est­ing and make the reader feel good.

SAA is boast­ing (quite rightly) about what it did to help a project in the coun­try to give school kids in un­der- priv­i­leged ar­eas ac­cess to books.

Its print ad this week ex­plained that when Food4Africa UK joined forces with three schools in Glas­gow to col­lect old books for the project, they were taken back by the re­sponse – all 1.5 tons of it.

But, in stepped Giuseppe Taran­tini of SAA Cargo Europe and the air­line flew the books home.

The top of the ad says: “This is a story about SAA” and con­tin­ues “and the 8 000 miles sep­a­rat­ing kids at home from books abroad”.

It’s a nice, feel- good ad and re­minds us that, de­spite the an­tics of its well-con­nected chair­woman, this is a na­tional institution which we can be proud of. So an Orchid to SAA. How­ever, given that this is all about kids and ed­u­ca­tion, and given that South Africa moved on to the met­ric sys­tem 40- odd years ago, couldn’t some­one be both­ered to con­vert miles into kilo­me­tres?

Reg­u­lar reader Daphne Sch­wab sent me this note: “We are watch­ing the Euro­pean Tour (Dubai) golf at the mo­ment and were shocked to see the sex­ist, de­mean­ing ad for the Ned­bank Chal­lenge – what on earth is it sup­posed to por­tray?

“A huge Onion for an oth­er­wise great tour­na­ment.

In­trigued, mainly be­cause you have to be some real kind of in­sen­si­tive MCP to even con­sider run­ning sex­ist mar­ket­ing ma­te­rial in this day and age, I looked up the ad.

And I must say, Daphne is spot on. The scene is Sun City. The event is the Ned­bank Chal­lenge. And the com­men­tary is all about golf – start­ing with a dis­cus­sion about “the lie”. That is as a gor­geous woman awak­ens.

We then fol­low her down to the Val­ley of the Waves and the com­men­ta­tor con­tin­ues his breath­less “golf ”com­men­tary, end­ing with “I won­der whether she will pull it off ”.

That, of course, refers to her pool gown, which she does re­move, re­veal­ing her stun­ning body, only barely con­tained by her bikini.

Har, har, har, okes! Pass me an­other beer here at the 19th hole. That’s where chicks should be – in biki­nis at the pool.

All this does is con­firm for me that gold is a game for mid­dle-aged lech­er­ous men, many not in great phys­i­cal shape them­selves.

And I also see that Su­perS­port, whose ad this is, don’t par­tic­u­larly care about of­fend­ing women.

Per­haps they don’t think women watch golf. Well memo for you okes: they do. And they don’t care much for this sort of thing.

Onions both to Su­perS­port and Ned­bank – the lat­ter be­cause, even if this isn’t your ad, you need to keep a close eye on how your brand is be­ing used be­cause, guess what, a lot of your bank clients are – women.

EYE CANDY: What on earth has this got to do with golf?

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