Fri, 08 Oct 2021 / Published in LATEST NEWS, OFM

The President has spoken – we’re at Level 1! And, October is definitely the most beautiful month in Bloemfontein… what more could you ask for? So pull on your takkies and pull into the Bloem Showgrounds for the Sunshine Walk on 17 October!

Bloem Show, along with OFM and Bloemfontein Courant, wants to get you and your family active again. This free fun family walk is only 2.5 kilometres long (perfect for the little ones) and there will be a competition, food and refreshment stalls, and music points. Plus, Central South Africa’s favourite presenters, the OFM team, will be there right alongside you getting active in the fresh Free State air.

The starting time is between 07:00 and 09:00 at the Banquet Hall. Parking is available at the Fun Fair grounds. Donations of non-perishable food will be collected for Food4kidz in lieu of an entrance fee. Strict Covid-19 regulations will apply.

Elmarie Prinsloo, Bloem Show CEO, says they initiated the walk because of “the negativity during Covid and the urge everyone has to get back to normality. This made us realise that it is time to get people together – within the safety of Covid regulations. It will make people feel better about themselves and result in a more positive attitude. The name is based on the popular song ‘Walking on sunshine’.”

According to Lindiwe Mtwentula, OFM Marketing Manager: “The purpose of the fun walk is to get the community of Bloemfontein outside, active and socialising again. Since the pandemic began, people have been unable to go out and take part in such events. So why not do it for a worthy cause? We urge the community to bring non-perishable food and help us to make a difference in the lives of the children that Food4kidz supports”.

Corni Fourie, Mahareng’s Business Manager (which owns Courant), says, “It is Courant’s aim to positively influence our community by informing and educating them about local news and events, such as the Sunshine Walk.”

Food4kidz says they are overjoyed to be part of the Sunshine Walk as it will promote the work they are doing. “This will also be a great opportunity to receive donations and it will assist us in the last term of 2022”

Mon, 27 Sep 2021 / Published in LATEST NEWS, OFM

Movie buffs are sure to remember “If you build it, they will come” from Kevin Costner’s 1989 Field of Dreams, or the later reference in the iconic 1993 Wayne’s World 2, “If you book them, they will come”.

However, many would agree that these so-called “spray-and-pray” tactics are best left confined to the world of fantasy.

“Prescription without diagnosis is malpractice” is a common phrase used by the medical fraternity, but it has also, over the years, come to apply to business and marketing. If the fundamentals of marketing have not changed – find out what people want, give it to them, and tell them you’ve given it to them – then how come there is still so much ‘clutter’ when it comes to generating content and marketing it?

Media and marketing constantly deliver new buzzwords. For instance, one thinks of terms such as ‘big data’, ‘sentiment analysis’, ‘SEO’, and then words like ‘conversions’, ‘engagement’, ‘organic’ and even ‘content’ that have taken on new meanings in an ever-evolving media marketing landscape.

What exactly is content? From the late 2000s, the word seems to have taken on a slightly new meaning with the concept mostly used in the context of media and by the late 2010s, having something to do with influencers on social media.

A quick search pulls up the Wikipedia definition, referenced as used in “publishing, art, and communication” where “content is the information and experiences that are directed toward an end-user or audience; something expressed through some medium”.

Content marketing, according to the Content Marketing Institute, could therefore be understood as a “strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly defined audience – and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action”. So, instead of pitching products or services, advertisers provide relevant and useful content to prospects and customers to help them solve problems or enrich their lives.

Radio is a brilliant marketing choice as it not only provides broadcast advertising and all its benefits but also digital advertising with its targeting abilities, experiential marketing, influence or endorsement capabilities, and it can through the use of technology harness valuable real-time consumer insights.

An hour on radio, especially in a commercial music-driven format, still affords audiences an unrivalled entertainment experience – music curated to their taste, relevant lifestyle information bursts (yes, not just any news, traffic, weather updates are flighted, it has to be of value to the core audience or target market), and engaging features, which often include chances to win or to reach out and connect with other listeners and followers.

This highly engaged audience is primed to receive brand messages to remain top of mind and to respond to call-to-action advertising.

Promotions have worked so well on OFM that advertisers have had to pull campaigns because they ran out of stock much earlier than anticipated.

However, in a highly competitive market your message may get lost among the other 30-second spots. Moving beyond ad breaks can give a brand more ‘direct’ access to potential customers. And, radio has, in fact, been providing content marketing for decades.

For instance, a law firm can bolster their reputation by providing useful advice on legal matters consumers are unsure of, like what their rights are when it comes to child support or how to go about purchasing a property as a group of owners.

Niche products or services or even products with broad appeal but that need to better reach a certain market segment can also benefit through content marketing. For example, a fast food brand targeting younger consumers could sponsor a trendy celebrity music segment in a programme.

Your marketing (product, promotion, price, place, people, process and physical evidence) and promotion (advertising, publicity, sales promotion, direct marketing and personal selling) mix still applies along with these considerations:

  • Message – what are you saying to whom (does the message ‘fit the market’?)
  • Medium – on which platform are you ‘speaking’ (live broadcast, television programme,
    blog posts, social media)?
  • Method – how is this message being delivered (text, video, audio)?

Furthermore, in order to reach your desired audience with the desired effect, you need to look at how the information you want to convey will be curated, filtering only that which is important to them, and translated into a ‘language’ that they understand, all in order to create meaning that has value for them, as well as the advertiser.

This is what is meant when stated that the primary focus of content marketing is “to nourish the lead” as part of a “long-term process” with the end result being “sales and conversions,” as explained by Semrush. A single piece of content, interview or article does not constitute a campaign and the sales funnel approach still applies. For each part, top, middle, bottom, it is recommended that certain types of content marketing be applied to the awareness, evaluation, and purchase stage.

But be warned, one size does not fit all. Only campaigns that relay universal truths with simple executions can succeed as ‘blanket’ or national campaigns. Trust the various radio brands to know their audiences well enough to understand how messages and executions should be tweaked to leverage them to provide sufficient response to your investment in larger reach.

Even worse than being an order taker is not knowing the menu – selling what doesn’t exist and then being unable to provide return on investment.

At OFM we believe foremost in not only providing, but creating value. Like a personal trainer we work with our clients to ensure the most favourable outcome. It won’t always be easy, there will be ‘robust discussions’, but we will continue to guide and encourage. We never give up. Your dream is our dream.

Why is it important? Radio stations do not operate in corporate vacuums. They are integral parts of communities. They contribute to the economy. They enable their clients to grow. By offering value we not only look after our own business, but we help others to thrive and keep jobs in the market. We care – a heck of a lot.

If it’s just about the bottom line and lining pockets, rather opt for a ‘frigid’ medium that does not provide a direct point of contact between a brand and an existing or potential customer.

Radio has heart and OFM is at the heart of Central South Africa, at the pulse of what our listeners want and what they need. We are constantly researching and changing our offerings to remain the single most important media and marketing partner in the Free State, Northern Cape, North West and southern Gauteng. We extend this heartfelt invitation to all our existing and potential clients to join us in insights-driven marketing to get the most from this burgeoning region.

Mon, 20 Sep 2021 / Published in LATEST NEWS, OFM

 Could there be any truth to the article published by The Economist in May 2021, titled “What history tells you about post-pandemic booms”, which states, “…people spend more, take more risks – and demand more of politicians”? 

The article speaks of a ‘boom’, which throughout history has been seen to manifest in this way following post-traumatic events. While uncertainty remains in South Africa, it is tricky preparing for a post Covid-19 future. OFM’s approach to this anticipated economic ‘boom’ of sorts is endorsed through its continued “Living the Real Good Life” brand positioning. 

Living the Real Good Life talks to escaping the pressures of everyday life by focusing on what matters most to OFM’s audience in Central South Africa… a place where the freedom to enjoy a more balanced life is not only possible, but is lived through music, engagement, lifestyle, and a strong sense of community. 

In 2021, this positioning was driven through OFM’s 35th birthday year, which the brand leveraged to generate good, wholesome radio experiences while creating steadfast product offerings that supported local business. 

Since March, the brand committed to providing positive yet disruptive on-air experiences through its birthday lead campaigns, which were created to address two objectives: 

• building brand love and audience; and 

• creating revenue. 

March’s Spot the Yellow Fleet campaign not only reinforced the new look and feel of the OFM brand but encouraged audiences to engage by taking pictures with the newly branded OFM fleet. These vehicles were placed around the region at outside broadcasts, lifestyle events, and activations to stimulate local economies and build brand love. 

80s April was a daily on-air celebration of music, which performed alongside a product offering generated from the excitement on-air. It was a theme that was heard on radio and taken to market through OFM’s Pop-Up Radio offering. 

May’s Agri Focus Week, which spoke to one in three of the 26 000 farmers living in the OFM footprint, offered a focused and dedicated platform for all who are proudly represented inside the agri value chain. 

In June, OFM’s Groot Vet Kombers Proe-jek inspired audiences across the region to raise R450 000 for Round Table Southern Africa’s Winter Knights Campaign. OFM took to the region with live broadcasts, twice a week, to challenge listeners to support a wide range of charities by purchasing a vetkoek for at least R35. The highest price paid for a vetkoek for charity was R10 000. This, and the many contributions from OFM’s audience, showcased the caring and real values contained within the Living the Real Good Life brand positioning. 

However, the moment of truth presented itself in July when OFM celebrated its official 35th birthday through a brand-building exercise called the OFM Secret Song. This was a month-long campaign that celebrated music, engaged audiences through curiosity, and uplifted a community with a grand prize of R35 000. 

These strategically placed exercises and considered touchpoints are used to build the OFM audience and provide real and engaging solutions to stakeholders; this, at a time when they need local support and investment the most. 

In this shared spirit of Central South Africa, OFM rallies its audience to lead a really good life, made up of many and often smaller moments of pure fun, real connection, contribution to others, and moments of meaning. 

OFM exists to connect and amplify Central South African’s desire to live their best quality of life in every moment, wherever they are. The brand is real, uplifting, proud and caring to all who listen to, and invest in, OFM. This is how OFM has built the trust to become the Sound of Central South Africa over the past 35 years. 

Tim Thabethe 

OFM Programme Manager 

Tue, 10 Aug 2021 / Published in LATEST NEWS, OFM

Getting your brand to stand out in this day and age has become more difficult than ever. The market is
flooded with different brand messages across different platforms such as TV, print, radio and social media,
and consumers are overwhelmed with options. It does not matter what platform brands use to advertise,
what is important is the marketing strategy. This begs the question – how can brands effectively share
their marketing message to consumers among all the noise? How can you break through the clutter with
a strong message that does not land on deaf ears? This can be achieved by going back to basics and crafting
a compelling brand positioning statement.

You need to understand your brand purpose and who needs your services in the market so that you can
understand your unique selling proposition. This may sound like a lot, but it is merely putting yourself in
your target audience’s shoes and learning what motivates their buying decisions. This will help unpack
what the clients’ needs are, confirm if your product solves that problem, and explore what makes your
business unique.

The first step is to create a compelling customer problem statement. Why is this important, you may ask?
A customer problem statement will assist you in understanding what your purpose as a business is, what
your customers’ needs are, and what customer problem you need to solve. Let us add context to the above
by sharing OFM’s customer problem statement. This statement has to be written from the customers’
perspective to identify what client problem your product or service will solve. Depending on your product
or service, your business can have multiple statements. This statement should highlight what the client
wants, why they cannot get it, and how that issue makes them feel. The best marketing messages or
campaigns always evoke an emotion – this assures your target audience that you know what they want.

OFM client problem statement
I am a listener in need of companionship, good music and news about my community, but I have too many
options because of all the different media platforms, which makes me feel lost and overwhelmed.

I am a business owner/brand trying to attract customers to my business but I am unable to access these
people because I don’t have a strong advertising strategy, which frustrates me.

Now that the client problem has been identified, a marketing message must be created from this, which
shows what your brand/business can do for your targeted audience. This is how to construct a compelling
marketing message from the client problem statement.

  • OFM, your favorite radio station with the latest news, entertainment and best music in Central
    South Africa. Available in FM and on live stream for your convenience.
  • We will help you reach the desired target audience for your product/services by creating a
    customised radio adverting campaign, which will ensure you attract traffic to your business.

There is absolutely no ambiguity in these marketing messages. For a business, which needs traffic to their
business, they know that OFM is the radio station that can help tell people about their products or services.
Listeners also consider OFM their go-to station for local content and entertainment. This statement can
further be applied to advertising campaigns, messages and designs.

Breaking through the clutter is thus achieved by good brand positioning. Position your brand/business as
a solution for your customers’ needs. Tap into their emotions, know what is important to them, and
communicate how your products fit in.

For more info, please contact Lindiwe Mtwentula on 051 5050 900, 082 416 1665, or lindiwe@ofm.co.za.

Tue, 06 Jul 2021 / Published in LATEST NEWS, OFM

 OFM, celebrating 35 years of the sound of your life, is offering listeners a chance to win big with the OFM Secret Song competition, on air from 2 to 30 July 2021! 

July has been earmarked as OFM’s ‘official’ birthday month, with special on-air birthday programming planned for Thursday, 1 July. From Friday, 2 July, listeners will be enticed with the exciting ‘Secret Song’ competition, where one lucky listener stands to win R35 000 cash for correctly guessing the title as well as the artist performing the song in question. 

OFM has selected a ‘secret song’, which was released roundabout 1986. A short clip of this song will be played on air throughout the month and listeners will be asked to guess what it is. 

To enter, listeners need to SMS the keyword ‘secret’ to 36636 (R1.50/SMS) with the full title of the song, as well as the artist. They also need to include their name and surname, and from where they are listening. Only entries that include all of the required information will be eligible. 

From 12 to 29 July 2021, OFM will select 35 finalists, who will be announced on air. Their names and song selections will be published on ofm.co.za. 

Once a song has been guessed, the finalist announced and the name displayed on the website, it is no longer in contention. Another song choice can then be guessed. Selected finalists’ choices are final, and they cannot enter another song choice. 

Clues as to what the song is can be obtained by SMSing ‘clue’ to 36636 (R1.50/SMS) from 2 July 2021. These clues will change from time to time. Keep an ear out as presenters will notify listeners of new clues being released. 

Says OFM Programme Manager, Tim Thabethe: “The ‘Secret Song’ concept is a tried and tested and fun competition mechanic that talks to OFM’s biggest product offering, which is music. 

“The R35 000 prize is a life-changing sum of money. OFM is driven to surprise and delight the listener and July presents one of three campaigns in 2021 that celebrate OFM’s 35th birthday. 

“The suspense of the Secret Song should create a lot of talkability among OFM’s listening audience,” concludes Thabethe. 

In the spirit of giving, OFM will waiver our 60 day winning rule, meaning that should you have won anything on OFM’s platforms on the last 60 days, you will still be eligible to enter the Secret Song competition. Other general competition rules will still apply and can be found on OFM’s website. 

Although there is only one grand prize of R35 000 cash, all finalists will receive limited edition retro OFM memorabilia in celebration of our 35th birthday year. 

The grand prize winner will be announced on OFM on 30 July 2021, during the Good Morning Breakfast, between 06:00 and 09:00. 

For more info, please contact Lindiwe Mtwentula on 051 5050 900, 082 416 1665, or lindiwe@ofm.co.za. 

Mon, 28 Jun 2021 / Published in LATEST NEWS, OFM

Hi, I trust this letter finds you well.

On Thursday 01 July 2021, OFM will officially celebrate 35 years as the leading commercial radio station in Central South Africa. This is a famous moment for a radio station that has been the voice of the region for many years.

On the day OFM will feature some of it’s most famous voices. They include but not limited to Rian van Heerden, Christie Hansen, Laurika Rauch and Koos Kombuis for colour. The day will be dedicated to our loyal listeners and business partners. We look forward to celebrating with you, and trust you will enjoy listening with us.

Be Safe! Stay Safe!

Regards, Nick Efstathiou, CEO – Central Media Group t/a OFM

Wed, 23 Jun 2021 / Published in LATEST NEWS, OFM

 If one could sum up the job of a journalist, it mostly comes down to telling stories. Not our own, but those of other people. This might sound simple, but the work that goes into writing and broadcasting or publishing a story can take days. 

Journalists are thus considered people who have a wealth of information on the widest variety of topics. Now, taking this into consideration, who would ever think we would live in times where we would have to report on something unknown, invisible, so foreign, never experienced in modern times, and only learning the (mutating) facts as we write? 

That’s Covid-19 for you. It can certainly be considered a watershed moment in the media industry globally. One day the OFM News team was chasing a story about a church gathering with international guests in Bloemfontein with possible Covid-19 positive cases, the next the whole country had been shut down – lock, stock and barrel – cut-off from the rest of the world. I remember telling a colleague, who responded very calmly, “Not to worry, so is the rest of the world”. 

The newsroom was abuzz with more questions than answers. Information overload was the order of the day. The team was in daily brainstorming sessions to figure out ways to tell the story differently. We had to make sure we were double-checking and questioning ourselves all the time. Are we giving enough information? Should we give more? Are we maintaining the correct balance of warning without causing panic? What should we do differently? 

But still, the ink from our pens could not dry. We had to learn and inform. And then learn more and inform more. We epitomised the Confucius quote: “The man who asks a question is a fool for a minute, the man who does not ask is a fool for life”. 

It was clear that it did not matter what happened, the basic test of journalism – whether a story is considered news or not – still applied. If you do not know the answer to a question, chances are about ten of your friends or family members do not know it either and that is enough people who will be interested in the story. 

Another foolproof strategy in journalism – especially when you run out of angles for news articles – is to tell the story through someone’s eyes. To try and make it more human and to tell the story using someone else’s words. But as time went on, we realised that hundreds and thousands of people were testing positive and a frightening number of them were succumbing to the pandemic. 

As is the case with any news department worth its salt, the OFM News team sets the news agenda for listeners and readers in Central South Africa. Our ability to keep people informed has been tested in so many ways with the coverage of the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Although listeners and readers were glued to their radios and screens during hard lockdown, they became overwhelmed within a few months, and news and pandemic fatigue set in. I do, however, believe that never before have the South African public and the government understood the importance of the news industry as well as they do now. 

The OFM News team strives to keep listeners in Central South Africa informed and up to date. More than a year later and the country is now experiencing the third wave. At provincial level, the vaccination programme is in full swing. As the pandemic continues to change our lives in a million different ways, we, the news writers, will continue to learn along with our listeners and readers, and, most importantly, report on it. 

For more info, please contact Lindiwe Mtwentula on 051 5050 900, 082 416 1665, or lindiwe@ofm.co.za.