Great news for Nfinity as Innovocean wins bid for V&A Waterfront outdoor media

Innovocean, a joint venture between two of South Africa’s leading OOH media owners Tractor Media Holdings and Reveel (a subsidiary of the Nfinity Group of Companies), has been awarded the exclusive advertising rights for the Victoria & Alfred (V&A) Waterfront in Cape Town, South Africa.

This win sees the newly-established company take on all of the internal and external out-of-home (OOH) and digital OOH retail advertising for South Africa’s largest and most popular ocean-side shopping and entertainment destination, which sees an annual foot count of over 26 million people (pre-COVID).

The Innovocean roll-out will commence on 1 April 2022, and was born from a conversation between Nfinity CEO Ken Varejes and Tractor CEO Simon Wallin 2019, when both realised that the synergies between their respective companies and their collective experience would make for a powerful collaboration in offering clients an unsurpassed product, skillset and service.

Explains Wall and Varejes, “We realised that by joining forces, we would be able to expand our sales presence, marketing manpower and other resources. Innovocean will offer our clients the ability to tap into two experienced, expert teams with one overarching vision.

“In terms of the V&A, there will be a number of brand new digital opportunities that we will be developing, which will include current as well as futuristic inventory design and technology, married with progressive thinking, creative execution and a seamless roll-out.”

Wall adds, “A key component of our vision for this project was to make access to the V&A’s network of inventory more democratic, and as we start to see a recovery in tourism and footfall return to the V&A, we’re extremely excited about the opportunities Innovocean’s network will facilitate.”

Reveel is known for its emphasis on architecturally and aesthetically-pleasing DOOH solutions, and Ken Varejes says that the V&A project will incorporate this approach into its roll-out. “While state-of-the-art digital screens will naturally play a significant role, we will also integrate architectural design that reflects the heritage of the V&A in a contemporary way.”

Ken goes on to explain that while Tractor and Reveel remain completely independent entities, Innovocean will likely tackle other projects in future, but that he and Wall are “firmly focussed on this project until our vision has materialised.”

“Massive congratulations to Tanner Rock / Tyron Martin from Reveel, and Simon Wall / Ben Harris from Tractor Outdoor for the hard work , passion and commitment to win all internal and external advertising rights for the V & A WATERFRONT. So proud to be associated with you great people,” Varejes says.

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Christopher Africa joins Nfinity

Christopher Africa joins Nfinity Group

With a wide portfolio of growing media properties, Nfinity, under the leadership of Ken Varejes and his team, has acquired the a stake in Christopher Africa,  which is an  exciting move for the Group. 

As one of Africa’s leading Artificial Intelligence companies, Christopher Africa with its flagship  product Christopher AI, a sophisticated real-time data profiling platform with the ability to profile target audiences into various segments by enriching the data, and analysing the information. It enables brands/organizations to serve accurate, hyper-personalized ads/messages to relevant consumers when it is relevant to them by engaging in relevant conversations in real-time. This works across Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

By joining forces with Nfinity Group, Christopher Africa will be part of an ecosystem that’s engineered to help entrepreneurs grow and better their businesses. “ For us this a big game changer as we look to scale up and grow our customer footprint” said Tokologo Phetla the founder and CEO of Christopher Africa.

An enthusiastic Christopher  Africa  team will be based at Nfinity’s offices in Sandton under the leadership of Tokologo Phetla, together with Thabo Ledimo, the Chief Technology Officer. The two will work hand-in-hand to ensure that Christopher continues to add value to various brands and their consumers.

These are really exciting times for Nfinity Group considering the shift to digital and AI driven marketing functions and there’s no doubt that the arrival of Christopher Africa will add value to the group.

OrangeBlock activates black

OrangeBlock, the bespoke events business operating within the Nfinity group of companies, has recently been awarded the contract to build awareness and promote the new content streaming platform – black.

“Besides special corporate hospitality events, award ceremonies, launch/release parties and public events, we are able to host promotional activations that put brands within touching distance of their markets,” says Michelle Kirby, Managing Director of OrangeBlock. “We believe that it is our creative concepts and ability to deliver on the brief that makes us successful at consistently implementing effective ideas.”

OB Black2

‘black’ is the latest content streaming offering that comprises a range of exclusive information including sports, television series and movies. In answer to client’s brief, OrangeBlock in collaboration with MagicMonkey arranged and implemented the “GETblack Gameshow” and specifically wrote the “GETblack Song” for this road show.

The GETblack Gameshow takes place in malls and other consumer convergence points across Gauteng and encourages shoppers to take part in various games where cellphones, t-shirts, caps, scratch cards and earphones can be won. Contestants do however need to be careful as some ‘booby’ prizes, like eating chillies and Mopani worms, are included.

The GETblack Song is performed by six highly talented dancers/singers performing a Gqom styled song specifically written for black. The audience is encouraged to get involved and dance, in turn, receiving prizes for the best participation and dancing. The performance ends with an introduction to our highly skilled GETblack foot soldiers who will introduce to you what the platform offers and facilitate the app download and content purchases right there and then.

“These activations have been a great success, particularly because everyday consumers have engaged with the events energetically and spontaneously,” concludes Kirby. “The activations were launched at the Rand Show and will continue until August 2018”.

OB Black1


A media legend gives a rare peek into the Influencer Marketing crystal ball

One of South Africa’s serial innovators and media legends, Ken Varejes, is known for taking ideas and growing them into highly successful businesses.

The podcast explores the trailblazing exploits of this humble soul in media & marketing, how he landed on and is invested in Influencer Marketing and how every brand needs to integrate this form of marketing into their marketing mix.

Contact our friends at theSalt.They are influencer marketing driven experts and their solutions drive RESULTS !

Influencer Marketing from a happy client’s perspective

You know Influencer Marketing rocks and is the gift that keeps on giving when an international brand that has been in the market for 110 years embraces this concept because results are there for all to see!

Dale De Villiers (Marketing Manager – Brother South Africa) walks us through a Reason-to-Believe in this phenomenon as an essential part of any brand’s marketing mix.

Contact our friends at theSalt. They are influencer marketing driven experts and their solutions drive RESULTS !

Orange Block ensures bespoke events and experiences

logo_orange_blockHow does Toyota entertain its partners while their spouses are in corporate training for the bulk of the day? Orange Block, a bespoke events management company within the Nfinity Group, explores.

“Considering that many of the partners were from out of town, we felt that a unique Johannesburg experience would create a memorable day for all,” says Michelle Kirby, Managing Director of Orange Block. “While the spouses were ensconced in training, partners took to the city and discovered the inner city of Johannesburg on the open top Red City Tour bus, culminating with lunch.”

Red City Bus pic

This is just one example where Orange Block created unique events and experiences to suit client or individual requirements. The company prides itself on researching guest profiles to ensure that they can create a lasting, memorable experience for all to enjoy.  “We take great care in making our guests comfortable, ensuring their specific dietary needs and preferences are met to ensure a pleasant experience all round,” confirms Kirby.

“The brief called on us to entertain, so in response, we hired out the Red Open Top City bus for our exclusive use allowing us the flexibility of going where we wanted in a time frame suited to our limitations and client expectations.  The tour guide and bus met us at Constitution Hill – and after our group enjoyed a leisurely stroll through this historical site we then proceeded to enjoy a gentle drive through the CBD ending at Gold Reef City – taking in many sites and enjoying the city’s rich heritage. The afternoon ended off with a custom made menu suited to each guest’s palette.”

According to Kirby, there are many advantages to using an external events supplier. This involves reducing the stress and pressure of managing all the logistics – pre event and on site, while facilitating all elements including registration, hospitality, catering, décor, audio visual and post reporting.

“We received great feedback from the clients who were quite surprised by ‘Joburg hospitality’ and thoroughly enjoyed the experience,” concludes Kirby.

Consumers proving to be the best brand ambassadors

logo_saltMore and more marketers and brand managers are realising that their best brand ambassadors are their very own consumers, but they seem unsure where to find them and subsequently, how to “on-board” them. Enter theSALT, specialists in influencer marketing, offering their clients positive brand conversations that originate from existing customers.

“A marketer’s existing customers are a brand’s most powerful asset. You can bet your house that if a consumer has a good experience with a brand they’re passionate about, they’re going to tell a lot of people about it – online and offline,” says Pieter Groenewald, Managing Director of theSALT.

“There is more value for marketers in gaining people who fall in love with a brand, compared to people just liking it. But the biggest barrier to entry that we see from marketers is that they find it challenging to build influencer marketing into their strategies when utilising their own resources due to the complexity of sourcing and managing a group of brand advocates.”

theSALT’s business model, as part of the Nfinity Group of companies, affords brands the opportunity to access their own loyal consumer base, which are then trained and managed from start to finish as influencers in brand campaigns.

Being part of the Nfinity Group has allowed theSALT access to a bigger network of expertise and infrastructure that has been invaluable and an enabler for the business to focus only on ‘making it happen’ for their clients. “Over the past few years, our business has grown exponentially,” says Pieter. “I believe that the market has really embraced influencer marketing and we’ve had the advantage of being around for a few years already, with a substantial database of on-the-ground influencers that are more than willing to share their brand experiences and testimonials amongst their own communities via word of mouth both on- and off-line.”

More and more brands are engaging with theSALT, allowing the business to open an additional office in Cape Town and even to start exploring international expansion.

But why not pay a local celebrity to endorse the brand? They have massive followers on social media after all.  Pieter says that there are a couple of differences worth noting: “while celebrities are selected based on the size of their audience as well as their niche (fashion, beauty, sport etc.), micro-influencers from theSALT are selected on the basis that they are an existing consumer and can speak about their “own” brand experience.  Don’t confuse reach and influence – depending on your strategy you can decide to use either or, or even both categories.”


He points out that celebrities are mostly limited to one-way communication online by broadcasting a brand message to their audience while micro-influencers can have two-conversations with their community. “It’s also important to note the difference between an audience and a community too – an audience is unknown to the celeb, where the community is a known audience to a micro-influencer,” he says.

“Possibly the largest difference of all though, is that actual word of mouth conversations in our daily environments is still the most powerful form of marketing – all research proves this. Our influencers on the ground are able to engage with real people face-to-face, in relevant environments and when they are most receptive to the messaging.  This element solves one of the biggest brand challenges: getting the message out there at the right time in the right environment thus shortening the path from awareness to purchase decisions.

Consumers and their word of mouth testimonials need to be part of the marketing mix, it’s that simple. The brands that are embracing this strategy are really reaping the rewards,” says Pieter.


The chronicles of a micro influencer

We chat with Rido, a micro-influencer on the Dettol Campaign. She takes us from the application process and discusses all the fun that she had!

Contact for all things Influencer Marketing!

The Rise and Rise of Influencer Marketing

Pieter Groenewald (BW)by Pieter Groenewald, CEO theSALT

The rise of digital and social media has given consumers a voice, and brands have slowly lost the control of conversations that they were once able to sculpt using traditional advertising, especially around quality of products or experiences. This growing trend has led to the rise of Influencer Marketing (IM).

The South African market will notice a relatively quick catch up with the overseas market and their rampant optimisation of Influencer Marketing as a channel to reach consumers in their everyday lives during 2018, a year when IM is sure to continue increasing in popularity.  I’ve got a feeling it will also become a much more prominent feature of South African marketing plans considering the increased activity and significant growth of IM already witnessed towards the back end of 2017.

According to an international survey by Linqia, 86% of marketers used Influencer Marketing in 2017, 92% of whom found it effective. The continued widespread adoption of Influencer Marketing shows that the channel is becoming an integral part of the marketing mix and is not a passing fad.

The more sophisticated a target market becomes, the harder it has become to reach them effectively and traditional channels are being questioned and challenged more and more.  If you want to achieve different results in a tight economy, you have no choice but to deploy different tactics.  The dilemma for marketers is the staggering divide that exists between the impact of influencer content on customers compared to the more traditional brand content and advertising, and the fact that brands still spend their marketing money mostly on traditional advertising channels.

Influencer Marketing is a relatively new way to reach consumers, capitalising on where they already naturally spend their time and actually prefer to spend their time.

As we close the gap on international market trends, the SA market will make less costly mistakes and take to heart key learnings from overseas markets within this field.  There will be more experimenting earlier on, with influencers not only falling into the “celebrity” type category, where reach is the main objective but into the ‘everyday celeb’ category where the average Joe utilises their own social media platforms to influence opinions about a brand.

Influencer Marketing is perfect to reach ordinary folk where the influence is natural, more in-depth and personal – your own tribe /personal friends where there is a two way communication. What better way to influence brand love than via your own trusted friends?

This is where, in my mind, there is huge potential for brands to forge relationships with their existing fans and from there utilising them within their brand plans as authentic influencers.  Think about what is on offer here, there are already trust relationships between the influencer and their communities and brands now have the opportunity to leverage this aspect further in a space where real influencing can take place.

No doubt 2018 will also see more stringent measurements around the performance of Influencer Marketing in the form of ROI, beyond the traditional reach and engagement metrics which have become the norm historically, but are now being questioned more and more.  Advanced and more forward thinking marketers are starting to look at the full consumer journey, holding Influencer Marketing accountable for driving lower funnel metrics in addition to the traditional awareness and engagement measurements.

No doubt, more players will enter the local market, offering technology solutions, in order to match brands with influencers and reporting on influencer activity.  The differentiation between these platforms will initially seem to not be that significant or “much of a muchness” as they say.  Albeit that these are great tools, don’t be fooled when you deal with humans, it will remain critical to forge personal relationships with these individuals representing your brand and effectively doing a job for the brand on your behalf.

So my advice, for best results always seek input from a supplier that can offer you that personal interaction with influencers. If you are in the marketing space, Influencer Marketing will definitely become more topical and discussions will progress beyond  the cautionary “should we or should we not”, but more to: how do we do it, what work best and who can help us in this space.

A great cup of coffee & a conversation with Sian, a micro-influencer on the Suzuki Campaign.

theSALT (Twitter – @theSALT_ZA) are experts at #InfluencerMarketing and engaging with real people to elevate #brands.

Here’s a great podcast from a recent campaign for #Suzuki with one of the #microinfluencers.