Nando’s take on polygamy and kosher chicken

#188. Listen to one of the other stars of the Flux Trend Review, Sylvester Chauke, marketing manager of Nando’s. Not only did he dance onstage to Beyonce’s “All the single ladies” but he also revealed the essence of the company’s marketing strategy, summed up by: “passionate about South Africa, and taking a stand against the bland”. The chicken brand is determined not to bore its audience, seeking instead to engage their attention in interesting ways, mostly through sharp social commentary and humour. They are keen to be part of the conversation and their ads provoke a reaction because they have a way of bringing to light the country’s zeitgeist. This I like.

A current favourite is their response to Fifa’s tagline: Make sure you can say “I was there”.

Then there’s my other favourite favourite — the recent Valentine’s Day message riffing off Jacob Zuma’s latest romantic misadventures. Continue reading

The other “state of the nation”

#187. Attend the Flux Trend Review, which I did yesterday at the University of Johannesburg Theatre – a little spot of [architectural] light on an otherwise mostly foreboding campus (that was besides for the delicious food from the hospitality and tourism students – 10 out of 10 for the home-made biscuits). Ferial Haffajee, editor of City Press gave the opening talk, a state of the nation address that included lots of ripe bananas, a great soundtrack and even a soccerball giveaway (definitely a 2010 event trend). Maybe JZ should try that. Continue reading

Polygamy and the big love of President Jacob Zuma

#175. Think about polygamy and how it’s become part of South African conversation. People talk about it all the time – over coffee, on radio, at the gym. Blame it on the SABC or M-Net. From early on I was gripped by Big Love, the HB0 TV series that used to be screened late at night focusing on the family drama surrounding one man and his three wives and the “cult” they left behind in Juniper Creek.

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