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Localising Locations, Back to Kasi!

Kabelo Kale

The Township Media Specialist

Thought Leader and Public Intellectual

Views from The Townships by Kabelo

Kabelo Kale

Kabelo Kale

29 May . 7 min read . Opinion

Creativity and digital out-of-home (DOOH) advertising have witnessed remarkable transformations in recent years, driven by technological advancements, changing consumer behaviours, and COVID. These developments have not been limited to urban areas alone but have also extended their influence to South African Township spaces, which houses the South African Majority Consumer. With the rise of digital media and connectivity, South African Townships are experiencing a creative revolution, redefining the way businesses and brands engage with their audiences and fostering economic growth. This article explores how creativity and digital out-of-home are evolving and playing out in the South African Township spaces, unlocking new opportunities and enhancing real community experiences.

(Credit: Johannesburg skyline: Reuters/Siphiwe Sibeko)

The Power of Creativity in South African Townships

South African Townships are vibrant, dynamic communities, rooted in tradition and cultural realities, that often face unique socio-economic challenges. However, within these challenges lies a wealth of creativity and innovation. Creative expression has always been an integral part of the South African Township Culture, giving rise to art, music, fashion, and various forms of self-expression. Harnessing this creativity and infusing it into DOOH advertising provides an avenue for economic empowerment and township community development.

DOOH: Transforming Advertising in South African Townships

As the world would have it, Digital out-of-home advertising is redefining the advertising landscape, and townships are no exception. Traditionally, townships have had limited access to advertising platforms, making it difficult for businesses to connect with their target audience effectively. However, with the advent of DOOH, this scenario has changed dramatically. The use of digital screens, interactive displays, and intelligent technologies on static out of home such as WIFI Enabled Wall Murals, Spaza Shops and Township Informal Point of Sale has created opportunities for businesses to engage with township consumers in innovative ways.

Interactive People Experiences:

DOOH enables businesses and brands to create interactive experiences that captivate audiences and foster engagement. In townships, this interactive nature of advertising can have a profound impact on consumers who are often more receptive to engaging with brands that resonate with their culture and values. Interactive displays, touchscreens, and augmented reality experiences can be used to tell compelling stories and involve the audience, resulting in a deeper connection and increased brand loyalty. We have particularly seen these in WIFI Wall Murals and Spaza Shops, the best example is the Augmented Reality Wall Mural done on the Oros Brand, where we have seen the brand literally come to life on a large format wall mural landscape.

OROS Wall Augmented Reality Wall courtesy of Owakhe Media:

HyperKasi Targeting: 

Townships are tight-knit communities with their own unique characteristics and preferences. DOOH facilitates hyperlocal targeting, allowing businesses to tailor their advertising messages to specific township demographics. By understanding the nuances of the local culture, businesses can create campaigns that resonate with the community, leading to more effective communication and increased customer engagement, this particularly true with lifestyle and alcohol brands at popular lifestyle lounges and day clubs such as KONKA Day Club in Soweto, heightening the consumer experience and moments. Another example is the WIFI enabled Wall Murals done for Unilever’s Sunlight where cultural and local nuances where used in messaging and engagement elements.

(Credit: The Media Krate)

Informative and Educational Content for The Masses: 

DOOH screens and WIFI Enabled Wall Murals an Spaza Shops in townships can serve as a valuable source of information and education. By displaying and enabling relevant content such as health tips, job opportunities, community events, and local news, DOOH advertising platforms, particularly WIFI Enabled Wall Murals and Spaza Shops become a medium that not only promotes products and services but also enhances the overall well-being of township residents. This socially conscious approach fosters a positive relationship between brands and the community, positioning businesses as valuable contributors to the township’s development. We have particularly seen this play out with FREE WIFI on Wall Murals being used as a help button for community members be it seeking employment, information, or just reporting a crime.

Empowering Local Entrepreneurs, Pushers and Hustlers: 

DOOH in townships can also serve as a platform for local entrepreneurs and businesses to showcase their products and services. By providing affordable advertising opportunities, digital screens and WIFI Enabled Wall Murals in townships enable small businesses to reach a wider audience and expand their customer base. This empowerment of local entrepreneurs stimulates economic growth within the township communities, creating a thriving ecosystem of small businesses, the very backbone of SA Township Economy.

The Role of Technology and Connectivity

The evolution of creativity and DOOH in South African townships is closely tied to technological advancements and improved connectivity. Increased access to smartphones driven by android (the most accessible and use smartphone in South African Townships) and the internet has transformed the way townships consume information and engage with brands. The digital revolution has provided a bridge between township communities and the wider world, opening doors to new opportunities and facilitating economic development, this phenomenon has given an increase in the use of WIFI Enabled Wall Murals and Spaza Shops that are interactive in nature, we have seen this phenomenon play out in the 3D Real Live Wall Murals for the Simba Brand, and the intentionally lit 3D Walls for the Thebe Magugu x Adidas Campaign.

(Credit: 3D Interactive WIFI Enabled Wall Mural pictures is courtesy of OWAKHE Media)

(Credit: 3D Interactive WIFI Enabled Wall Mural Picture is courtesy of The Media Krate)

Furthermore, advancements in data analytics and real-time tracking on WIFI Enabled Township Wall Murals and Spaza Shops enable businesses to measure the impact of their DOOH campaigns in real-time. This data-driven approach helps optimize advertising strategies, ensuring that brands deliver relevant and impactful messages to township consumers and the South African Majority Consumer.

In a nutshell …

The evolution of creativity and digital out-of-home (DOOH) advertising in South African township spaces has unleashed a wave of transformation and empowerment. By tapping into the vibrant culture and creativity of these communities, businesses have found innovative ways to connect with the local audience, foster economic growth, and contribute to the overall development of townships.

DOOH predominantly driven by WIFI Enabled Interactive Wall Murals and Spaza Shops has revolutionized advertising in South African townships by offering interactive experiences, hyperlocal targeting, socially conscious messaging, and opportunities for local entrepreneurs. The use of interactive displays, augmented reality, and tailored campaigns has allowed brands to engage with the community on a deeper level, creating a sense of belonging and loyalty.

Moreover, DOOH with WIFI Enabled Wall Murals and Spaza Shops has become a platform for informative and educational content, offering health tips, job opportunities, and local news, thereby enhancing the well-being of township residents and communities. This socially conscious approach positions businesses as contributors to the upliftment of the community, fostering a positive relationship and long-term brand affinity.

The advancements in technology and increased connectivity have played a pivotal role in the evolution of creativity and DOOH in South African townships. Access to smartphones and the internet has bridged the gap between townships and the wider world, enabling businesses to reach a broader audience and explore new avenues for growth.

As the digital revolution continues to unfold, it is essential for brands and businesses to embrace the power of creativity and DOOH in South African township spaces. By understanding the unique characteristics and preferences of each township, brands can deliver tailored campaigns that resonate with the community, driving meaningful engagement and sustainable growth.

In conclusion, the evolution of creativity and DOOH in South African townships is not only transforming the advertising landscape but also creating opportunities for economic empowerment, community development, and cultural enrichment. By harnessing the boundless creativity within these communities and leveraging community accessible digital technologies such as WIFI Enabled Wall Murals , Spaza Shops and other Township Retail Point of Sale, businesses and brands can build strong connections, contribute to the prosperity of townships and the Township Economy, and foster a brighter future for all.

Kabelo Kale

Views from The Townships by Kabelo

LinkedIn: Kabelo Kale

With 20 year solid experience as The Township Media Specialist, Pluralist and Entrepreneur in The Township Economy. Kabelo consults and speaks across all Township Advertising and Promotions disciplines and business platforms and solutions that provide access to South African Townships through innovation from the Townships & the science behind the behaviour of Township markets. 

Kabelo strive to push the Majority Consumer, our township communities & brands beyond desktop research about South African Townships and other formal methods that continue to remain irrelevant to advertising brands.

Building & nurturing client/agency relationships is top priority in my world, Kabelo wants to leave you feeling empowered with the tools & knowledge of our townships to help you strategically plan your own future campaigns and make sense of your marketing plans. His vision is to continue empowering communities by partnering with big brands to market their products & services to urban & township audiences, which in turn generates community income and a sense of purpose and relevance. He aims to bridge the divide in the South African markets by combining the insights behind township audiences & the education around the benefits of advertising in our township communities and the Majority Consumer.