Reaching the Consumer in South Africa

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Marketing Opportunities

Growing Sectors
Automobiles, electricity, renewable sources of energy, security/safety, telecommunications, sports items, clothing, jewellery, shoes.
Consumer Behavior
South African consumers are generally very brand conscious. The middle class, particularly, has quite good consumption levels, including the new black middle class. These consumers are looking for sophisticated goods and tend to reduce the amount they spend on vital commodities or housing.

The after-sales service is extremely important in South Africa, especially in terms of providing technical and spare part services.

Consumer Profile and Purchasing Power
The South African consumer is a well-informed consumer. Moreover, the dynamism in country’s economy has resulted into an increase in purchasing power and an expansion of the black middle class having higher disposable income levels.
Consumer Recourse to Credit
The majority of South African households resort to debt in order to satisfy their consumer needs. In the contexte of the recent recession, consumers concentrate on paying off their debt rather than making major new purchases.
Consumers Associations
PMG , The Consumer Institute South Africa
SANCU , South African National Consumers Union
Departments of Consumer Affairs
CBA , Credit Bureau Association

Media in Which to Advertise

TV is the most expensive but also the most popular media of advertising in the country. Nearly 70% of the households in South Africa have TV sets.

Main Televisions
Channel O
Supersport - M-Net
Press in South Africa has a better reach to consumers but expensive. However, regional and local newspapers are less expensive, but suited only for a product with strong potential in a specific region. Advertising through magazines is a more affordable option for small- to medium-size enterprises. It is the best advertising option to reach a focused target, consumer group or to sell industrial and commercial products.

Main Newspapers
Business Day
The Star
The Citizen
The Sowetan
The Times
Sunday Independent
You can reach consumers all across the country through mail writing, but it is no more an effective medium of advertising.
In Transportation Venues
Transit advertising is used in major cities and towns only. Advertising space is available on rails, buses, taxis and other specialized mobile vehicles.

Market Leaders:
Provantage Media
Primedia F2F
Radio is the most traditional form of mass entertainment in the country. It reaches over 90 % of the population and is also by far the least expensive.

Main Radios
Channel Africa
702 Talk Radio
New Technologies (E-Marketing, SMS, etc.)
With broadband becoming popular, internet advertising is growing although its reach is still low.

Market Leaders:
Quirk e-marketing
Search Maestros
Online Publishers Association -OPA
Main Advertising Agencies
Print Media Association (PMA)
Magazine Publishers Association of South Africa (MPASA)
Association for Communication and Advertising (ACA)
National Association of Broadcasters (NAB)
Outdoor Advertising Association of South Africa

Main Principles of Advertising Regulations

Advertising is permitted on television, radio, in the cinema, in print and outdoors. However, advertisements may not be transmitted in the commercial breaks immediately before, during or immediately after children’s programs.
The Tobacco Products Control Amendment Act was passed in 1999. This act bans all advertising and promotion of tobacco products, including sponsorship and free distribution of tobacco products.
Must be registered by the Medicines Control Council. Pictograms may be used on packaging and in advertisements provided they relate to the approved claims on the product.
Other Rules
The advertiser accepts responsibility for the accuracy of the research and claims.

The guiding principle in all comparisons shall be that products and/or services should be promoted on their own merits and not on the demerits of competitive products.

Use of Foreign Languages in Advertisement
South Africa has 11 official languages, but promotional material including advertisements is typically printed in English language.
Organizations Regulating Advertising
Advertising Standards Authority of South Africa (ASA)

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