Here’s an article every Zimbabwean marketer must read. Why spend more offline?

L.S.M Kabweza Avatar

newspaper-vendor-hararePrint media is not going away any time soon, but the writing is on the wall, where the future of publishing is. Recently, I had the opportunity to attend a workshop where local marketing expert, Benjamin Juru, was presenting on the shift to digital media for local (hell, global) marketers. He spoke about the numbers accessible to advertisers online and those accessible via print and basically posed the question: Why are marketers spending more offline to reach fewer customers? Than they could online with much less spend that is.

He’s put those numbers in an article posted to his blog, and if every local marketer would read this, it would change how big a deal (and a shift) they think digital media is. You can read it here.

Some things you may want to keep in mind is that we think online ad slots by the same publications (Herald, Sunday Mail, NewsDay, Daily News etc…) are way underpriced  – but we’re a little too conflicted on this one though ;). And even if that were taken out, there’s still Facebook advertising and Google Adwords which work out way cheaper still.

Are you a marketer? Or are you involved in any way in the advertising industry locally? Do you agree there’s more value for the dollar online? We’d love to hear your thoughts on this.


  1. Raymond Swart

    I have noticed that the shift locally has begun where people are starting to understand that there is value, although I think the challenge is not to convince that it’s cheaper to advertise online but rather the challenge is to produce the results online. Traditional methods allowed “Marketers” to get away with alot, and if the results didn’t come then they could always blame the paper/flyer etc.

    It is now coming down to people who can produce results not blow smoke over everyones eyes.

    Having said that a marketer “should” know the target market and how to reach them, and like it or not traditional print is the way to go for now atleast.

    1. Ngoni

      You took it right out of my mouth. True marketing starts at identifying your target market, profiling it and then approaching it with the relevant mix.

    2. Benj

      Well very valid points you noted there but with were marketing is going, greater emphasis is now being placed on ROI and there’s no more room for excuses. Print is still valid but very expensive, difficult to measure and now is the time to gravitate towards digital.

  2. Ngoni

    Most marketing initiatives are determined by your target market. A true marketer will firstly profile his/her target market using relevant criteria like levels of education, levels of income, probability of the targeting market seeing online ads etc. As for Facebook the greater part of the population view via mobile and the viewing experience on mobile is not the best so what are the chances of someone noticing your advert. The greater part of Zimbabwe’s population does not use online versions of media like newspapers and tabloids. So if you are trying to market a product targeted at the MASSES offline might still give you more value for your money. If on the other hand you are targeting more specific customers online might work

  3. MhukaHuru

    You can never seperate marketing online with online payment systems, with no universally (Zim) accepted online payment systems, its a bit difficult to have the required results, as we always want the landing page to sell our product/service, and not just give more information.

    Also we have failed to sell local content as digital marketers, just try googling any product/service and the closest-to-location result you will get is SA products, if not American.

    lasty, “Having said that a marketer “should” know the target market and how to reach them, and like it or not traditional print is the way to go for now atleast.” #Stolen

    1. pickaname

      From your first paragraph it would seem that you draw no distinction between marketing and advertising!?

    2. Benj

      Well, that’s a very important cog in the digital marketing wheel, something we urgently need. Once that is in place it will revolutionise the way we market online.

    3. L.S.M. Kabweza

      “You can never seperate marketing online with online payment systems” I don’t quite agree. i find waiting for payment systems more an excuse actually. Online catalogue + COD (or get them to submit their phone number and close the sale via phone/sales agent visit/email etc…) can work well for a lot of products.

  4. Dalu Sibanda

    As we are bombarded by millions of ads online our brains have developed a way to filter “junk”. On a given day i can barely remember any online ads that i have seen but from print i can maybe remember one or two,

  5. kokhayamarketing

    All the comments are correct. But there are other reasons too. Marketing budgets are getting smaller by the year. That gives more say to the client side decision maker, an if they want an ad a certain way then….. You cant really argue or you’ll lose the job or the account all together. Also bear in mind that marketing agencies earn commission on ad placements so there is a benefit to using high value ad platforms.

    1. L.S.M. Kabweza

      if client want an ad a certain way, and you know they are not getting value that way, and, without questioning you go ahead and accept to proceed…

    2. MhukaHuru

      Well I dont agree, better to lose the account than work with an account that will damage your reputation, but first, knock sense into their heads, thats your job man! (OffTopic: Where are you practising? #JustAsking)

      1. kokhayamarketing

        Gentleman, I agree with 100%, we are all in the same boat, till rent has to be paid haha. Its laws of supply and demand. There a lot of supply (ad companies and individuals) with little demand (ad dollars). C.R.E.A.M. Practice in Hre and Byo

  6. Vals

    I am of the opinion that if we talk of adding value to our clients, then digital is the way to go.

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