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SPARK Media offers support to Black-owned small media agencies

SPARK Media, a division of Caxton & CTP Publishers and Printers, is offering small, black-owned advertising agencies an opportunity like no other.

This offer emanates from an agreement between the Competition Commission of South Africa and Caxton and is scheduled to run until February 2021. See Competition Commission settlement details at

Qualifying small agencies can now benefit from a 25% bonus allocation of advertising space when booking print media advertisements in Caxton publications, including 12 national and 14 local magazines, Ramsay magazines, The Citizen newspaper and more than 140 local newspapers.

To qualify for this support, agencies are required to meet the criteria set out in the Broad Based Black Economic Empowerment Act 53 of 2003 and the codes of good practice issued thereunder.

These agencies should also not bill more than R50 million worth of advertising a year with any one or more media owners and must be majority Black owned.

The offer is subject to a total annual advertising space cap of R15 000 000 and the bonus advertising space may be utilised at the reasonable discretion of Caxton, subject to space availability.

To register as a beneficiary of this offer, and to see its terms and conditions, visit and follow the online instructions after consulting the terms and conditions referred to above. Should you want more information, contact SPARK Media on 010-492-8391.


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Caxton Excellence Awards acknowledges local talent

Competition between the various Caxton Local Media’s editorial, sales, advertising, management and support staff was stiff at the prestigious Caxton Excellence Awards. Judges were impressed with the top quality work that individuals dedicated to their papers and clients.

Held at the Empire Hill venue in Parktown on 15 March, over 400 ‘Caxonites’ from across South Africa, dressed to impress at the annual awards ceremony that emphasises excellence.

“The event is in its 29th successive year and the work produced by individuals, and the papers themselves, gets better and better with each passing year,” says Karen Geurtse, General Manager Caxton Local Media Regionals. “29 excellence awards, along with prize money totalling over R315 000, was presented to individuals and papers that truly impart this ethos of excellence.”         Winners this year included Lowvelder (winning four categories) with editor De Wet Potgieter winning Best Sold Newspaper of the Year and Best Front Page; Jonothan Hen-Boisen for best Advertorial or Promotion with #Straatvark and Benno Stander in the Original Idea category.

Zululand Observer was another big winner on the night, with Benice Gertzen taking home Best Ad Designer of the Year; Benice Gertzen and Wannita Smith Best Written and Designed Advertisement; Theresa Botha and Mari Scott for Best Major Advertisement Feature / Supplement in Print and/or Digital and Gavin Anthony for Best Community Involvement.

Multimedia Journalist of the Year went to Jana Boshoff of Middelburg Observer winning R30 000 and a Macbook Air sponsored by Ekurhuleni City Council.

 Other worthy winners were Capital Media Pretoria’s Sunette Visser and Natalie Groblerfor the Best Free Newspaper of the Year with Steve Thomas from Highway Mail receiving a special award for his service and dedication over decades with Caxton. “We wish Steve the absolute best in his retirement and know that he will leave the Durban group of papers in exceptional hands,” comments Geurtse.

One of the best ways of capturing a moment is through pictures. This year, judges were presented with amazing news photographs that told entire stories in just one frame. In the Human Interest Photo category, Selogile Leshage from Potch Herald walked away a winner, with Ettienne van Rensburg from Vaalweekblad capturing Sport Photo of the Year and in another category, Best Headline Writing.

Photographer of the Year however went to Zita Goldswain from Witbank News. In addition to her prize money she also won a Canon camera valued at nearly R24 000, sponsored by Canon. Best Get It Magazine went to Joburg North, edited by Michelle Brink and the best Get It journalist category was won by Lani Fouche from Bloemfontein. Siso Naile (Joburg West) won Most Promising Journalist while best Field Saleperson of the Year was won by Neil Jonker from South Coast Sun.

“Advertisers and marketers should never underestimate the power and potential of local media,” says Joint CEO of SPARK Media, Gill Randall. “Our editorial and sales people live and breathe their community every day, which is why they have such an exceptional understanding of their areas. These awards demonstrate this, and the value that each and every one of these ‘Caxtonites’ bring, not only to the local community, but to the advertisers looking to reach these valuable consumers

We congratulate all the winners and applaud the quality of entries from each individual and all our teams.”

Engage and make contact with SPARK Media: call +27 10 492 8391 or email

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How safe is your brand online?

A popular burger chain’s logo appears above an uncomfortable close-up of a naked woman on a porn site, while a food retailer’s banners appeared next to fake news articles on a highly disreputable website. Chances are these brands have no idea that their brand adverts are appearing in such brand damaging environments. Which is why one of the biggest reservations that brands have when it comes to programmatic buying on the open market, is that marketers aren’t aware of what sites their brands will appear on until the impressions are served.

Joint CEO of SPARK Media and Head of the Publisher Council of the IAB, Marc du Plessis attended the 2018 IAB Annual Leadership Meeting from 11-13 February in California, which focussed on how to build a 21st century brand. The event explored how the new direct-to-consumer (DTC) economy will drive growth in 2018, how DTC brands are building up their own supply chain ‘stacks’ using Supply Chain as a Service (SCaaS) partners.

“In this DTC age, the supply chain has expanded, with most brands now working directly with technology partners and media partners, or even going directly to consumers with in-house developed content,” says Marc. “As an industry, there is much opportunity for collaboration between media and publishing agencies, where brand safety is a clear mandate for all.”

The uncontrollable proliferation of content generated on the internet has brought with it huge issues around trust and truth, which can seriously undermine the relationship between consumers and brands. “No trust equals no data which equals no brand. A brand without trust is just a product, so brand safety is vital for brand sustainability. We need to take action now before ‘viewers stop viewing, advertisers stop advertising and publishers stop publishing’,” says Marc.

IAB aims to create a more brand safe, fraud-free internet by demanding brand safety from all publishers. The conference highlighted the importance for brands to only partner and invest in responsible platforms and publishers with a responsible approach to supply chain.

It calls on brands to take action on issues in the digital supply chain, like global brand giant, Unilever, who warned Facebook and Google that it could pull its digital ads if these platforms don’t do a better job of monitoring objectionable content and fake news.  Unilever vowed to work with these platforms to collaboratively find solutions. Unilever has now also partnered with IBM to use blockchain technology (adistributed ledger technology) in the media to ensure that they solve the transparency and trust issue.

“SPARK Media has a direct relationship with all publishers of the more than 100 websites that we represent, serving almost 15 million page views and 7 million unique visitors each month. Our Local News Network’s (LNN) websites offer brands a safe environment. These secured sites are trusted sources of news for local communities and have an established journalistic network of more than 400 people on the ground that are often first to break local news,” Marc says.

“SPARK Ignition SELL, our programmatic sell side solution, offers hyper-targeting by demographics, location and interest categories.  We offer advertisers a brand safe environment with private, protected, owned inventory. Our technology allows us to exclude adverts that feature next to breaking news that could impact on advertisers’ brand identity/safety,” says Marc.

“As an industry, we need to develop firm criteria for evaluating trusted publishers and educate and drive awareness through members of the IAB, publishing partners and the media.”

To find out more about brand safety and how to ensure your brand only appears in brand safe environments, contact SPARK Media: call +27 10 492 8391 or email


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Follow the Easter Bunny to Emerald!

Follow and catch the Easter Bunny at Emerald Resort & Casino this Easter! Bring the kids and take part in the annual Easter egg hunt to find all the eggs that the bunny left lying around. The Resort is laying out a holiday programme of note for all kids and kids at heart this Easter. “We look forward to the Emerald Easter holiday programme every year, as it’s true family time,” says Emerald Resort & Casino’s Marketing Executive Tanuja Gangabishun. “It’s the perfect opportunity to indulge in some chocolaty delights while the kids are guaranteed to have fun with our jam packed holiday programme.”

As from 30 March, right until 8 April, visitors to the Resort will experience kiddies entertainment, paintball, beach sports, folk games and, of course, the annual Emerald Easter Egg hunt is not to be missed on Sunday, 1 April.

Free Registration will take place in the Piazza area from 12h00. The race will start at the Piazza area and move through to the Hotel grass area. Kids must be aged between 2 – 13 years old (only one entry per child). Collect tokens for activities and return them for Easter eggs.

The Easter Bunny will at the Resort the entire long weekend from 30 March to 1 April and will also be available for photo opportunities.

The kiddies entertainment and activities include pedal carts, located behind Aquadome free of charge (available from 10h00 to 18h00), comedy and magic shows, a balloon sculptor and face painting. Beach sports and folk games will feature The Neck Game, sack races, musical chairs, dodge ball, stone toss and tug-of-war to mention a few.

“Over the Easter weekend, families can also try the Gourmet Easter Milkshakes at Breeze – they are absolute showstoppers!” says Tanuja. “It’s the one time in the entire year that chocolate overload is more acceptable and we look forward to celebrating with everyone visiting Emerald Resort & Casino over Easter.”

To view these and other Resort promotions, events and more, visitors to Emerald Resort & Casino are encouraged to stay close to the Resort’s Facebook and Twitter pages, or guests can visit for more information on any of the promotions mentioned here.

Emerald Resort & Casino is a licensed gambling venue. Winners know when to stop. Only persons over 18 are permitted to gamble. National Problem Gambling Counselling Toll Free Helpline 0800 006 008.

Emerald Resort & Casino.

Tel:                              016 982 8000





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TLC’s Salon Media gives Antistax a boost

Hair stylists and their customers share a special bond, they tell each other almost everything. Loyalty between stylist and customer is also very strong, so it stands to reason that advertising in this close knit environment offers great returns.

 “Advertising in salons through our Salon Media business offers advertisers a non-intrusive form of brand recognition that really sticks,” says Greg Bruwer, TLC’s Managing Director. “We teamed up with research company FGI to provide us with a snapshot of pre and post campaign awareness for Antistax, an over the counter treatment for restless legs and CVI (Chronic Venous Insufficiency).

With customers visiting their salon on average 3 times in 8 weeks, 47% of customers found the information advertised in salons as ‘very valuable’.”

107 Respondents were interviewed in salons in Johannesburg and Pretoria with data captured electronically through hand held devices.

When prompted, 58% of customers said they noticed advertising for Antistax within salons. The majority of the respondents (91%) particularly in the pre-test, were unaware of the CVI condition. That figure dropped substantially in the post test to 77%.

“FGI confirmed that at post campaign stage awareness of the CVI condition as well as the product Antistax grew substantially in the post-test results,” says Greg. “The campaign had been in salons for a month, a comparatively short period of time, ) when the post-test was conducted.This coupled with the fact that customers are at the Salon only on average three times in eight weeks proves that Salon Media has had a very positive effect on the awareness of Antistax and the CVI condition in such a short period of time.”

TLC Unlimited

TLC (Targeted Lifestyle Communication) introduced the concept of washroom advertising to the South African market in 1996, and has since become the sole player in this media arena offering a plethora of in-mall and washroom advertising platforms such as standard and talking frames, cubicle wraps and treadmill branding to mention a few. More recently, TLC has expanded its portfolio to include a number of new businesses which are housed in TLC Unlimited (under Primedia Unlimited) namely TLC; Salon Media; and Fitting Exposure. Visit or for more.

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Caxton – So much more than “just a print company”

Caxton goes beyond being “just a print company”, having evolved into an all-encompassing, multi-platform, local media company over the years since it was first founded as a printer and publisher in 1980. Over years, Caxton has learnt the value in teaming up with communities, which is why heavy community involvement plays a pivotal role in Caxton’s company culture. The company goes further than just supplying local news, immersing itself in, teaming up with and uplifting communities – whether it’s taking part in local forums, fund-raisers, commerce organisations, sports clubs or service organisations.

 Caxton Local Media is a multi-media company and publishes content through various means, including newspapers, magazines, websites, events, custom printing and many more. “Our local newspaper offering includes the publishing of over 140 local newspapers, distributing over 3,7 million copies per week,” says Jaco Koekemoer, MD of Caxton Local Media & Coldset Printing. Caxton also offers printing solutions at its 10 strategic cold-set factories where the local newspapers, as well as various supplements and retail pamphlets are printed and either inserted or distributed to outlets.

Because Caxton adopts a philosophy of being immersed in the communities in which its papers operate, schools are considered important media partners and covering school-related events is included in their content strategy. Caxton also makes corporate social responsibility involving local businesses, investing in small and family owned businesses in the community. The company uses all its media platforms to create awareness of the various projects and initiatives in its communities.

“Our company also accepts its responsibility towards the business environment, so we engage in various efforts to improve society in some way or another. These include getting involved in fundraisers, taking hands with NGOs to strengthen their efforts, as well as initiating projects that would positively impact on the socio-economic challenges of the community,” says Koekemoer.

Adapting to the new age demands for digital accessibility, the company has also invested heavily in the development of digital media in the last few years, developing online platforms which offer advertising opportunities for specific markets such as motoring, property, vacancies and classifieds. The company has also developed 78 local websites off their local newspaper network, which are supported by social media platforms to enable community engagement and interaction.

“At Caxton Local Media, our core vision is to actively reflect the faces, voices and dreams of all the communities we serve across all our print products and hyper-local websites. We are entrenched and visible in our communities through all aspects of their lives in the space where they live,” says Koekemoer.

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Notice of AGM

The Annual General Meeting for the ABF (Advertising Benevolent Fund) will be held on Thursday 22 March at 3pm. All interested parties involved in the advertising, media and marketing industries are welcome to attend.The meeting will take place at SPARK Media’s offices, Block 3, Burnside Office Park, 410 Jan Smuts Avenue.

Please contact for more information.

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TLC and Hubble sign new advertisers

Primedia Unlimited’s indoor lifestyle advertising specialists TLC and Uber’s preferred in-vehicle entertainment partner, Hubble, have jointly signed advertising deals with Samsung, VISA and Nescafe Gold.

“TLC has the exclusive rights to sell high viewability video on Hubble’s interactive touch screens in Uber vehicles,” says Greg Bruwer, TLC’s Managing Director. “It’s an ideal platform in which to engage on a one-on-one basis, with tech-savvy, early adopters in the high income market, and we’re thrilled to have signed on these three fantastic brands.”

Samsung has secured 500 of Hubble screens in Uber vehicles around Johannesburg, showcasing a brand channel and TV reel to promote the launch of two new phones, Nescafe Gold has created a game that consumers can engage with during their commute in 100 vehicles, while VISA is showcasing a TV reel promoting various products.

“The levels of engagement on Hubble’s screens never disappoint,” says Greg, “we’re constantly receiving positive feedback from consumers who regularly interact with the screens, all displaying a high level of brand recall.”

Hubble’s Devon Brough backs these findings: “Statistics have shown the level of engagement on Hubble’s screens to be exceedingly higher than traditional digital advertising. Considering that the user is always in control, it virtually guarantees a positive experience from interested passengers.”The fully interactive advertising platform offers high quality video and interactive content in a captive environment with measurable ROI. Content includes documentaries, comedies, neighbourhood insights, news, sport, weather and things to see and do within Johannesburg and Cape Town. Like the traditional media platform on television, commercials are flighted in between standard content without being intrusive.

“We work extremely well with Greg and the team at TLC and these campaigns are no exceptions – two heads are always better than one, and in this case, we have double the infrastructure, selling power and industry insights,” says Devon.  TLC Unlimited

TLC (Targeted Lifestyle Communication) introduced the concept of washroom advertising to the South African market in 1996, and has since become the sole player in this media arena offering a plethora of in-mall and washroom advertising platforms such as standard and talking frames, cubicle wraps and treadmill branding to mention a few. More recently, TLC has expanded its portfolio to include a number of new businesses which are housed in TLC Unlimited (under Primedia Unlimited) namely TLC; Salon Media; and Fitting Exposure. Visit or for more.

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Data driven audiences in brand safe environments

The way in which readers and users are engaging with publications has been, and is, changing. To stay ahead publishers must evolve and diversify their revenue streams or risk being left behind. The shift to a data-driven advertising world is in full swing and Caxton is at the forefront of digital innovation, ensuring consumer-insight-driven data is available through Oracle’s BlueKai Data Management Platform (DMP).

Caxton Digital’s programmatic and direct audience solution has, through its Data Management Platform Bluekai, the capability to collect and deliver relevant, customised interest-based audiences. This gives advertisers the opportunity to speak to potential consumers across the Caxton Magazines’ network of premium lifestyle-focused publisher websites, in a brand safe environment.“In today’s world it’s not just about the platform, but rather a move to focus on the audience,” says Jana Kleinloog, Caxton Magazine’s Digital Head. “Bluekai allows the acquisition of critical insights from both our own first party data as well as third party data. It enables us to create more engaged and valuable audiences, separated into highly specific inventory segments. For instance, if a brand wants to advertise a new clothing line, we can build them a bespoke fashion audience.”

Caxton Magazines has ten women’s interest sites, including trusted legacy brands like rooi rose, woman&home, Bona and Your Family. The network also includes travel and agriculture titles, Country Life and farmer’s weekly. Jana adds, “With over a million unique South African visitors coming to our sites every month, we offer brands great reach across our titles.”

“Just like consumers spend their money in many different places, users are not single-site dwellers and will consume content across many digital sites and platforms,” says Jana. “We now have the technology to build a rich profile based on the content the users consume and their interests.”

“Caxton Magazines’ editorial content is skilfully crafted by professional journalists. Brands and agencies should know they are buying inventory against quality content,” she adds. Content remains king, but data is critical in the editorial process. Editorial content, across all Caxton Magazine titles is driven by what the reader wants to see and read based on analytics.

Through the DMP, advertisers and media agencies are supplied with high quality inventory options to target audiences based on browsing behaviours and demographics. Data layers further enhance the user experience, performance metrics and decreased audience duplication result in much better reach. Caxton Magazines’ General Manager Anton Botes adds: “Messages are delivered to the correct audience in the right environment, resulting in a much higher click through rate (CTR) and overall performance of the advertising.”

As one of the largest women’s interest publishers, Caxton Magazines’ audience can be segmented by user interest categories that include travel, style and fashion, personal finance, food and drink and décor and gardening, to name a few.

“The magazine business has evolved,” concludes Jana, “We are at the forefront of this transformation and are very excited about what we can offer advertisers.”

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Ready for a complete ‘meltdown’ at Emerald Resort & Casino?

As part of the epic Vaal Meltdown at Emerald Resort & Casino on Saturday, 24 March 2018, fans of the Distruction Boyz will be pleased to know that – for the very first time – this popular duo will be performing at the Resort  together with DJ Maphorisa, Lady Zamar and the very best Vaal DJ`s.

“I’m extremely excited, and I’m sure that fans will be too that for the first time ever, hit makers, the Distruction Boyz are on their way to take the Vaal by storm,” says Emerald Resort & Casino’s Events & Entertainment Manager Leolize Naidoo. “In December last year, this duo achieved their goal of becoming the first artists, with a strictly gqom album, to reach gold status.” Joining the Distruction Boyz at The Vaal Meltdown will be DJ Maphorisa and Lady Zamar and, of course, some of the very best DJ`s in the Vaal.  DJ Maphorisa is a South African record producer and DJ who has worked with several local and international artists while Lady Zamar, who needs little to no introduction, released her debut album King Zamar in March last year.

The Vaal Meltdown at Emerald Resort & Casino:

Venue:             Emerald Arena

Date:               24 March 2018

Time:               19h00 (Doors open at 18h00)

Tickets:           R200 (General Access)

R500 (VIP Access – includes seating and waiter service)

Tickets are available at CompuTicket –

“We’re definitely going to be cranking up the heat next month at Vaal Meltdown and look forward to seeing these artists performing in the Vaal,” concludes Leolize.

To view these and other Resort promotions, events and more, visitors to Emerald Resort & Casino are encouraged to stay close to the Resort’s Facebook and Twitter pages, or guests can visit for more information on any of the promotions mentioned here.

Emerald Resort & Casino is a licensed gambling venue. Winners know when to stop. Only persons over 18 are permitted to gamble. National Problem Gambling Counselling Toll Free Helpline 0800 006 008.

Emerald Resort & Casino.

Tel:                              016 982 8000





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