Mediamark launches community radio sales offering in South Africa

Audio and digital solutions company, Mediamark has launched a new sales division that will represent the community radio space in South Africa, called CommVibe.

Mediamark is a multi-channel sales house representing World Class audio and digital media brands who offer deep and engaged connections with their audiences. Mediamark connects advertisers with these audiences through relationships that matter, and solution driven results that count.

The company has announced it will be taking a package of Western Cape-based community radio stations into the market, with a combined audience of just over 860,000 listeners.

The offering will be available to buy on Telmar and other planning tools through an aggregated audience buy.

Mediamark is owned by Kagiso Media, born out of the Kagiso Trust over 25 years ago. The organization says that it has always played an important role in empowering and uplifting communities.

We had been asking how best we could play in the community radio space, using our deep knowledge and experience and also how we could help upskill community stations commercially when we decided to adopt this innovative model,” says Mediamark CEO Wayne Bischoff.

The decision to open the community radio sales division follows an extensive consultation process with both the advertising industry and community stations themselves.

What became clear is that there were three stumbling blocks to advertisers wanting to buy airtime advertising at a community level. Firstly, it was difficult from a planning perspective to approach numerous smaller stations. Secondly, they weren’t sure if their spots were actually flighted. Thirdly, there was uncertainty about whether the revenue had eventually reached the community stations,” Bischoff added.

CommVibe, powered by Mediamark, aims to address all three concerns.

Mervyn Naidu, head of business development at Mediamark, says, “Through the offering, we are providing advertisers access to a large aggregated and predominantly untapped audience across different audience segments using radio stations who really understand the vibration of the communities they serve. We are also offering almost real-time proof of flighting / broadcast.”

Media guru Gordon Muller is a big proponent of community radio. He likens ‘community’ to an atom.

At the center of the atom is the ‘Nucleus’, the central energy force that holds the Atom (community) together. Each community will have a different energy source,” Muller added.

According to Naidu, community radio stations have deeply loyal listeners because they revolve around their specific shared ‘nucleus’.

They are an invested audience with a high time spent listening. So, we’re essentially offering advertisers an opportunity to up weight their campaigns by reaching this aggregated and deeply engaged audience, over 400 000 who aren’t listening to any commercial stations at all.”

While CommVibe will initially only have a Western Cape offering, the plan is to roll out similar packages across other provinces, in South Africa.


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