Big Brands Making Big Impact on SA Youth

For the third year in a row, BlackBerry took home top honours in the 2012 Student Village Makoya Awards by winning The REAL MAKOYA award – for the brand that demonstrated the most successful 360 degree (multiple channels) youth campaign in 2012. It’s Music Mentorship initiative, headed by none other than Hip hop star and 2 times SAMA award winner – AKA – secured the honours. The winning BlackBerry mentorship finalist will get to perform live with AKA as part of the line up at the next BlackBerry Secret Gig, which will headline a surprise international artist.

Student Village CEO Ronen Aires says: “This brand is dynamite in the youth market. They have truly demonstrated what it means to be part of the conversation with young people, developing richer and deeper brand experiences year-on-year, with this winning campaign reaching a staggering half a million students on campuses already.”

These awards – based on research conducted among students nationwide – recognise the best youth marketing and career development campaigns through various mediums including media, activations, social media and graduate recruitments. They aim to credit brands that are not just youth conscious, but activate campaigns that are visible, vibrant and relevant. Continues Aires: “The Makoya Awards are gaining huge momentum with the youth. They don’t just appreciate brands that invest in them as viable consumers, but they appreciate a platform to voice their opinions about such brands – and Makoya has fast become this platform.”

The nominees and winners in each of the 10 award categories were announced at a breakfast event at the Johannesburg Country Club in Woodmead on Tuesday 20th November, with a summary as follows:

  •  Best Graduate Recruitment Ad went to Rio Tinto for making a career in mining more ‘mainstream’
  •  Most Impactful Graduate Recruitment campaign went to Pick n Pay for their on campus giant box draw card
  •  Most Aspirational Graduate programme went to Anglo American
  •  The Oh My Gosh (OMG!) award went to Paco Rabanne for its Rock ‘n Roll campus wide tour search
  •  The Eye Catcher award was scooped by BlackBerry for its “Say NO to FOMO” campaign
  •  The Out of the Box award goes to the most innovative campaign, voted to be Red Bull drop box campaign
  •  The ‘’What the Fudge’’ (WTF?) award, or as its name suggests, the most provocative award went to KFC for its Milkybar flavour KFC Krusher campaign
  •  The Coolest campaign, with a social conscience goes to the brand that made the biggest impact in mobilising students to actually sign up to a social cause – I-Pledge won this category hands down for its road safety campaign, with over 100 000 pledges received to date!
  • The Social media superstar award went to Nike – a brand that really stood out this year, and managed to captivate massive youth attention through its Jozi Run initiative.

Aires says that the execution and creativity in each of these winning campaigns is astonishing and seem to get more and more innovative each year – especially on campus – as students’ expectations only get higher and higher. “Aptly the Out of the Box award, literally saw Red Bull strategically placing a giant crate, set up to look ‘broken’ from an airdrop, with 52 cases of the product inside, on campuses! Students could not believe their luck when they arrived in the early morning. And Red Bull was on stand-by, secretly of course, filming the whole thing! This campaign was described by students as one of the most innovative sampling for the year!”

The OMG! and WTF? Awards are designed to highlight a brand’s ability to make an impression and be controversial or provocative. KFC’s Krushers campaign, saw face guru Shmarmu Kush on hand to teach students face yoga – uh huh, what is that you ask? Exactly – how provocative is that and so it rightly deserves the WTF? Award! Face Yoga btw, is just that – yoga for your face! Who knew!

Two first time winners, Nike and I-Pledge, managed to entice and capture a large portion of the youth market, Aires says. “These campaigns actively drew in the youth, to be involved in or follow their campaigns, so a massive big up to both of them on this well deserved recognition, which is a massive pat on the back in terms of succeeding in making their brand relevant to a critical market!”

Lastly, Blackberry won the Eye Catcher category for the best creative execution for its Say No to FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) campaign.

“This year’s winners showed some key trends in youth marketing and career development, including the need to keep campaigns bold, simple and relevant. It’s a real privilege to be part of such a vibrant sector and I look forward to many more successful Awards in years to come,” Aires concludes.

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Big Brands Making Big Impact on SA Youth