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A “revolutionary series about a perfectly imperfect single black woman … For black women, it’s like our own personal Scandal, a world in which we see ourselves not just in its main character, but in most of its characters.” That’s how BuzzFeedNews.com described BET drama Being Mary Jane, and the overwhelming fan response on social media has proven it, with #BeingMaryJane trending on Twitter every time it airs.

 

Since 2013, Gabrielle Union (from 10 Things I Hate About You, Bring it On), has starred as Mary Jane Paul (MJ), a news anchor who almost has it all: the high-flying job, money, good looks, great hair, and a crazy but loving group of friends and family. But MJ, who is in her late 30s, is looking for Mr Right and wants to start a family. Which leaves many steamy encounters with hunky men devolving into rivers of tears as her dream of future perfection is shattered into a million pieces.

 

 

We’ve seen MJ try to smooth out the kinks in her family life, coping with her mother’s health issues and a brother with addiction problems. We journeyed with her from Season 1 to 4 as she found herself caught between sensible and sexy men. She almost had it all with David … until she lost it. Then she got it on with Andre – only to find out that he’s married with kids! After a failed fertility treatment and a car accident in season 2 (when she overheard her best friend confessing her love to David), MJ finally chose to cleanse her crazy life of toxic people and relationships. Finally, she was evolving. Even Michelle Obama, who is a fan of the show, approved.

 

 

At the end of season four, MJ’s co-worker, Justin, got down on one knee to propose, but he didn’t know that MJ may already be pregnant … and not with his child! The teaser trailer of the finale movie shows MJ in a white wedding dress, and we can’t wait to see who’s wearing the matching suit.

 

Watch the Being Mary Jane finale movie on Thursday 18 April on BET (129) at 21:00.

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Phat Joe takes over Radio 2000 Breakfast Show

Posted by radio On April - 7 - 2019 ADD COMMENTS

Radio 2000 has announced a few changes to its line-up, in order to remain competitive and relevant to audiences across all race groups. New additions to the Radio 2000 family include Phat Joe, Nonala Tose, Nathi Ndamase on its midweek shows and Carol Ofori on weekends. Phat Joe will start on Monday 08 April 2019 and Carol Ofori will only join the Radio 2000 family on 01 May 2019.

The new line-up gives balance to the previous predominantly male heavy prime time slots, with Nonala co-hosting with Phat Joe the Morning Drive from 06h00 until 09h00, Monday to Friday. Nathi Ndamase has joined Glen Lewis on the Afternoon Drive between 15h00 and 18h00, Monday to Friday. Justice ‘Just Ice’ Ramohlola has moved to the 19h30 – 22h00 slot, Monday to Thursday.

Reggie Philander will join the station from 01 May 2019 to present the programme ‘Brunch’ between 09h00 and 12h00 on weekends.

The station will also automate 00h00 – 06h00 Monday – Monday from May 2019.

Radio 2000 continuously aims to grow its listenership across the country and has adopted a 3 pronged approach of delivering its content on air, online as well as on the ground activations. This approach is the station’s way of fulfilling the SABC’s vision ‘to become the leading, credible voice and face of the nation and the continent’.

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Mzansi Magic favourite shows are coming back!

Posted by radio On April - 4 - 2019 ADD COMMENTS

Mzansi Magic (Channel 161)  is excited to announce the return of the favourites in April! We promise, this is the content you signed up for!

 

  1. The Herd 

Sunday drama at its best, The Herd Season 2 will make a return on the 7th of April 2019. Will the powerful Mam Mngadi still be living her best life? What happens now? Don’t miss it on Sundays at 8pm!

  1. Lockdown 

We have barely recovered from last season of Lockdown, and we’re back to it again! Is Mazet gone for good? Questions that need answers. Keep It locked to your screens from the 7th of April on our usual 8pm timeslot.

  1. Utatakho

Your trusted host Nimrod Nkosi will take us through multiple journeys and DNA test results as people seek the truth about their identity. The show comes back on Tuesdays at 8pm on the 9th of April 2019.

  1. Papa Penny 

No one does reality better than Papa Penny Ahee! The one and only Shangaan King is back on your screens Mzansi. We are excited to see what he has in store for us! Catch your fave on Thursdays at 8pm from the 11th of April 2019.

  1. Uthando NesThembu

Your favourite family is back! Catch Musa and his wives as they continue on their journey of love. They comeback on the 12th of April 2019, so be sure to be glued to your screens.

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Port Elizabeth born Singer/songwriter Titi Luzipho has released her brand new single Being Woman from her forthcoming album. Titi is a trained musician, creative and musical director whose love for music knows no bounds.

She comes from a musical family, her late grandfather, CB Qwesha was a musical genius and composer. His greatests work – Ndisindise O Jehova, Save me Oh Thou Jehova became one of the world’s greatest hymns. Titi became a household name in the Jazz circles across South Africa, having worked with the likes of Simphiwe Dana, Thandiswa Mazwai, Siphokazi, Gloria Bosman, Siphokazi, Caiphus Semenya and Loyiso and Zwai Bala among other greats.

 

“I am so blessed to have this gift and be able to share it with the masses. Being Woman is a powerful song celebrating women, acknowledging the plight of women in an unjust world. This song is so personal to me, it took a lot for me to birth it and I hope it heals, empowers, motivates and inspires a lot of women and men.”

 

Titi has worked with a number of incredible artists on her upcoming album with Luyanda Madope on production and keys. The album also features Ringo Madlingozi, who is one of Titi’s strong influences.

 

Titi counts it a blessing to have been mentored by the Grammy award nominated producer Zwai Bala. Together they worked on honing, nurturing and harnessing Titi’s vocal ability. How can she fail when she was not only mentored by the eldest Bala brother but by the late great Dr Winston Ntshona and Dorothy Masuka and her equally talented mother Vuyelwa Qwesha-Luzipho.

 

Now Titi has built quite a following introducing and refining the concept “#SongsMyMotherTaughtMe” – a tribute to the massive musical influence her mother, well known songstress Vuyelwa Qwesha has had on her life. She also started a movement #BeingWomxn as part of the eradication of femicides. This movement seeks to heal and celebrate women who are victims of gender-based violence, misogyny and patriarchy.

 

Titi is a gem! The future of jazz is in great hands’

-The Times-

 

‘My eyes were glued from the first note to the last. When I die, this is how I would like my music to be sung.’

-Dorothy Masuka’ – her late mentor.

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SABC News YouTube channel wins an award

Posted by radio On March - 30 - 2019 ADD COMMENTS

The South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC)  News YouTube channel has scooped an award at the Bookmarks 2019 Awards on Thursday, 28 March 2019.

This award is a confirmation that the SABC is making great strides in positioning itself as a multiplatform content provider. This is in line with the SABC’s mission statement “to become a high performing, financially sustainable, digitised national public broadcaster that provides compelling informative, educational and entertaining content via all platforms”.

 

The SABC News YouTube channel offers a variety of news reports, broadcast on its television platform, the SABC News Channel (Dstv 404) and news and current affairs programmes aired on SABC 1, 2 and 3. In addition SABC News YouTube channel also broadcasts original content produced in the SABC’s digital newsroom, as well as the live streaming of daily news events.

The SABC, with its portfolio of channels, is an official YouTube partner. The SABC News’ YouTube channel (www.youtube.com/sabcnews) is one of the most viewed South African YouTube channels globally  – with over 500 000 subscribers. It has received over 200 million views (and over a billion watch time minutes) in total since its establishment in 2012.

 

The channel hosts the best of SABC television news where users can watch news clips, in-depth inserts, interviews, current affairs programmes and livestreams of breaking news and events (including full broadcasts of events not always available or fully covered on SABC television channels).

 

The SABC reiterates its commitment to continue to deliver an unparalleled public value proposition, of ensuring that the millions of South African households who rely on SABC for news and current affairs are kept captivated on all our news platforms.

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Metro FM Line-up changes announced

Posted by radio On March - 30 - 2019 ADD COMMENTS

METRO FM  announced its 2019/20 lineup, as it aims to continue raising the industry bar. The station will effect slight changes to its lineup on 1 April 2019, in line with continuous delivery to its mandate and business strategy.

 

 

With the new line-up, METRO has signed four big names to its stable. The station has built onto the successes of the station’s currently strong line-up, by bringing on board Ayabonga Cawe, Relebogile Mabotja, Moshe Ndiki and Andile Ncube.

 

Ayabonga Cawe  takes over ‘METRO FM Talk’, between 19h30 and 21h00 on Monday to Thursday. Ayabonga possess all attributes to rebuild METRO FM Talk offering, aligning it to core audience needs and the changing broadcast landscape.

Joining the ‘#FreshBreakfast’, which airs between 05h00 and 09h00, at the beginning of May 2019 is seasoned broadcaster and media personality, Relebogile Mabotja.  She will add her voice to the freshest breakfast team on radio with her smart thinking, wittiness and ability to have diverse views and in-depth knowledge of current affairs content as well her relatability and appeal.

 

Another addition to the METRO FM family is one of South Africa’s most loved personality, Moshe Ndiki who joins the 15h00 to 18h00 ‘The Drive’ show as a contributor. He will be bringing the station’s listeners his take on ‘the past week in the news’ every Friday on ‘The Drive’, putting a light hearted and fun spin on top news items that made headlines in the past week.

 

The last addition to the team is sports fanatic, Andile Ncube who joins METRO FM as the sports presenter for the weekend breakfast show ‘#TheWKNDR’, which broadcasts from 06h00 – 09h00. He will be presenting sports bulletins, ensuring the station’s listeners know what to expect in the world of sports on weekends. Andile brings with him a wealth of experience from SABC Sports having anchored many TV sports shows as well as hosted a radio sports show on Radio 2000 and being part of many international sporting events.

 

The new changes will see Somizi Mhlongo joining ‘#TheBridge’ team, bringing his own version of fun, charisma and more fun to the show, whilst Sentle Lehoko takes over the Monday to Thursday 21h00 – 00h00 slot on the new show ‘#NinetoMidnightWithSentle’Marian Nyarko-Lartey will follow with ‘#TheWindDown’ from 00h00 – 02h00 with Ismail Abrahams taking over the baton, keeping METRO FM listeners company from 02h00 -05h00 on Monday to Friday with the show ‘#EarlyMorningsWithASmile’.

 

Dynamic rising star Khanya ‘Kyeezi’ Siyengo takes over the ‘#METROFMTOP40COUNTDOWN’ with his energetic, knowledgeable and entertaining presenting style on Saturdays between 09h00 – 13h00, whilst his former partner in crime Phind’Gcobe Madubela aka DJ PH rides solo on ‘#CruiseControl’ Saturdays 13h00 – 15h00. Bujy Bikwa joins MoG on the ‘#TheWKNDR’, Saturdays 06h00 – 09h00.

 

The Station Manager for Metro FM, Ms Sibongile Mtyali stated that “this year’s line-up schedule is a continuation of our commitment to deliver quality programming and maintain top-of-mind awareness as the best commercial radio stations in the country. We are pleased that we have managed to secure some of the country’s top radio personalities joining brand METRO FM. All our personalities fit in well with what Metro FM stands for and where it’s heading”.

 

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“The biggest problem in the influencer marketing industry is a lack of trust. There’s no trust in the influencers that they actually care about the brands they’re promoting. There’s no trust that their followers are real.” – e-marketer

 

 

Influencer marketing is something that just about everyone in the advertising industry is talking about,with the issues of trust and authenticity often taking centre stage in this conversation.

However, there are only a few individuals in South Africa who have the kind of extensive first-hand campaign experience as one of South Africa’s top celebrities and influencers, Pearl Thusi.  Thusi can speak to the issue of trust from an influencer perspective based on her vast personal experience within the South African context.

 

A recent report from e-marketer spells out  the issue clearly, “The biggest problem in the influencer marketing industry is a lack of trust. There’s no trust in the influencers that they actually care about the brands they’re promoting. There’s no trust that their followers are real.”

 

To address this concern, and some of the other challenges facing both agencies and influencers, Thusi is part of the team that has recently launched the Humanz platform in South Africa. This software analyses, not only influencer profiles, but all of their followers too.  Using natural language processing and image recognition paired with artificial intelligence, machine learning and deep learning, to understand variables such as gender, age, interest, activity and previous mentions of specific brands, Humanz is a significant technological step-forward.

As an influencer, Thusi has experienced for herself how and why such a tool is needed and why the core values of of trust and authenticity are so central to the agency/ influencer relationship, as she explains, “my relationship with the product has to be authentic- there’s no price that can be placed on that.  I also only work with clients and agencies who understand and respect my worth. Its essential to know your market and the importance or having an organic, authentic relationship with the product. Its so obvious, we all know at this stage that people are getting paid, however, the authenticity should never be compromised. As a brand or an agency, you need to understand what you need communicated and then trust the influencer.”

 

The consumer market has matured, and as Thusi states, consumers are savvy enough to know influencers are being paid, meaning that more and more an influencer’s reputation and ability to actually influence is based on one thing – “Authenticity is everything. Things go viral not because of numbers only, but because they speak to people in an authentic way, it doesn’t matter how big the numbers are- content is king. Its the content that people have to engage with- and it has to resonate.”

 

For agencies to understand of the worth of an influencer is in-itself a difficult process, both for the agency and the influencer. According to Thusi, in order to establish a costing for a campaign its important to “consider what they’re asking for, how many posts, how much time is needed?  What kind of content needs to be created?  However, my numbers and my follower engagement are the most important parts for me- because my community is everything to me and I can’t and won’t just regurgitate every other post or campaign that is given to me. It has to work within my space.”

 

Thusi also advises agencies to approach influencer marketing from a diversity of perspectives,“not every agency understands this concept, but sometimes influencer marketing reminds me of the old fashioned door-to-door selling model- it works!  These days a commercial on TV isn’t that impactful unless the content is controversial or very well scripted and shot. However, people believe people, and  people talk to people, especially when its real. Agencies should understand that a celebrity or highly influential individual can start a conversation, but you need people – micro influencers – to keep the conversation going.  They are the real agents of change and influence, they are the bees that collect the pollen and keep the hive functioning as they pollinate for future conversations.”

 

According to Thusi, often agencies do not fully understand the potential of influencer campaigns, “Some agencies and even influencers are just getting the job done in the cheapest way possible and do not understand the value and worth of influencers on every tier. This can lead to the influencer not going all out.  I believe campaigns could improve when influencers are made to understand their value, power and worth and treated as such. also when the numbers speak for themselves, like with Humanz its easy to tell which influencer really loves sharing and creating awareness, regardless of the remuneration. Let people be people- influencers are not robots. They are people, powerful people.”

 

According to Thusi, the influencer market in South Africa is growing swiftly and influencer strength is growing. She believes that, “the market is actually being led by the power of the influencers, not just locally, but globally and its amazing for me to see people being rewarded for being themselves and doing what they love.”

 

Based on her experiences, Thusi was excited to be able to bring a platform such as Humanz to the South African market. As she explains, “Humanz is the bridge. Not every influencer has a manager or has a professional influencer operation. That’s how Humanz assists the influencer. For agencies the platform provides transparency and information, enabling them to choose the perfect people for their campaigns, where right now its almost a blind date with every influencer. Are all their followers real? Did they buy the engagement- if there is any?’ Agencies and influencers need to connect- and the strongest bridge is the Humanz platform.”

 

Humanz officially launched in South Africa on March 1st  after successfully carrying out pilot projects with some of the largest agencies, brands and influencers locally.

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MTN South Africa has partnered with global customer engagement company, Clickatell , to launch MTN Chat, enabling its customers to engage with the telco over WhatsApp.

 

MTN Chat will enable customers to initiate purchase of airtime and data bundles within their WhatsApp chat session. Over time customers will be able to also access customer support and self-service options, including performing upgrades, managing their accounts, and receiving low balance alerts. MTN Chat is part of the MTN vision to significantly enhance its digital business offering to boost its customer base through advanced services.

 

“Clickatell understands that mobile operators are under increasing pressure to deliver excellent customer service over the digital channels their customers prefer. By offering convenient services over a secure, convenient channel, MNOs can both increase their transactional volume and attract and retain customers – something that is paramount in an age of continuous digital transformation and growing competition,” explains Pieter de Villiers, Clickatell Founder & CEO.

 

 

Clickatell has already helped Absa Bank, GTBank, First Bank of Nigeria and United Bank of Africa successfully deploy chat banking capabilities on WhatsApp across Africa.

 

 

Clickatell is a WhatsApp Business solution provider. The WhatsApp Business API provides brands the ability to send out notifications and conduct two-way conversations with consumers within WhatsApp once they have opted in. Clickatell’s Touch Flow and Connect platforms gives MTN the capability to unify its communications channels, customise user workflows and connect to internal systems.

 

 

“It is imperative that companies focus on improving their self-service experiences in order to retain and grow customers. The Clickatell offerings provides an easy, secure and convenient way of giving users control over their accounts through WhatsApp, a platform they already have an affinity for,” comments says Jacqui O’Sullivan, Executive for Corporate Affairs at MTN SA.

 

 

De Villiers says Clickatell’s low effort, high return offerings can propel mobile network operators onto a digital transformation road that differentiates them from their competitors.

 

 

“Clickatell has worked hard to ensure that its solution deployments are far less challenging than typical enterprise platform integrations. With over 1.5 billion people in 180 countries using WhatsApp every month, delivering chat commerce experiences on WhatsApp is one of the most efficient ways to reach a majority of consumers who can immediately benefit from the services offered on the channel. There is no doubt this solution is perfect for MNOs around the world where WhatsApp is frequently used.”

 

 

With over 1.5 billion people in 180 countries using WhatsApp every month, delivering chat commerce experiences on WhatsApp is one of the most efficient ways to reach a majority of consumers who can immediately benefit from the telecom services offered on the channel. There is no doubt this solution is perfect for MNOs around the world where WhatsApp is the dominant social engagement channel.”

 

 

 

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Pearl Thusi & Graeme Smith are Humanz

Posted by radio On March - 9 - 2019 ADD COMMENTS

Influencer marketing, while having matured beyond a passing trend, still has many doubters with regards to its reliability, accountability and sustainability. All of that however is about to change with the advent of Humanz, a young start-up which claims to have developed the most sophisticated social data platform in the world – specifically designed to make influencer marketing as accessible, reliable and trustworthy as programmatic media channels.

The Humanz platform is officially launching in South Africa this month with two respected professionals and influencers in their own rights, Graeme Smith and Pearl Thusi as local partners.

 

“The marketers and agencies we were speaking to were clearly frustrated with the few solutions available locally. They weren’t good enough and were stopping them from investing further in influencer marketing. We discovered Humanz and realized it was going to change things not only in South Africa but throughout the world.”says Smith.

 

Influencer marketing is the fastest growing marketing practice and media channel worldwide, expected to become a $10bn market by next year. 80% of marketers worldwide say that they plan to grow their influencer marketing spend in 2019, currently sitting on average somewhere between 4,3% and 7,6% (eMarketer, July 2018).

 

However, nearly all marketers and agencies face the same challenges when it comes to accurately reporting and tracking ROI: widespread fraud and the need for manual, extremely time-consuming work to deal with these issues.

 

“Celebrities and content creators are often approached by brands and agencies to participate in marketing campaigns, but they are typically full of logistical challenges, some of which I have experienced first-hand. Our plan with Humanz is to make the process simple, seamless and transparent, while offering valuable insights throughout to both marketers and influencers.”, adds Thusi.

 

Some of these insights can be found in the recently released “Influencer marketing benchmarks for South Africa” report, available via the Humanz website. Two interesting nuggets: 1) the average influencer account has between 20% and 27% suspicious followers, considered of little to no value to marketers; 2) only 1 in 2 followers in SA is likely to turn into an actual impression, creating a significant gap between followers amount and actual reach.

 

Unlike other platforms, Humanz analyses not only influencer profiles but all of their followers too, using natural language processing and image recognition paired with artificial intelligence, machine learning and deep learning, to understand variables such as gender, age, interest, activity and previous mentions of specific brands; a significant technological step-forward from the manual processes followed by most agencies and platforms. This also enables advanced media planning metrics, such as unduplicated audiences, expected impressions and AVE benchmarking, which cannot be provided accurately without an in-depth analysis of each follower.

 

“Most South African influencer campaigns have used celebrities or social stars, due to the difficulties and time-consuming nature of manually identifying, verifying and working with smaller influencers. However, engagement rates are, on average, inversely proportional to audience size on both Instagram and Twitter. Smaller influencers are also considered more trust-worthy and hence more likely to ‘influence’” says Pierre Cassuto, who carries the dual role of CMO for Humanz globally and CEO for its African operations.

 

“For agencies, Humanz represents an easy way to launch and generate revenues from a new practice, or scale up without significant costs. For brands, it allows them to safely and efficiently bring influencer marketing in-house, with options ranging from free plans to full enterprise solutions.”, he adds.

 

Humanz is officially launched in South Africa on 1 March, after successfully carrying out pilot projects with some of the largest agencies, brands and influencers locally. A free trial of the platform is available on their website, along with information on their partner programs for agencies and content creators.

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Crooner Joel Zuma will set the stage alight at the Motown-themed Valentine’s night at Hard Rock Cafe in Sandton on Thursday 14th February. This velvety-voiced singer is promising a sexy, soulful performances for lovers and singles alike.

 

Joel and his band present a vibrant, eclectic mix of original Afro Soul, Afro Pop, Soul Ballads with a touch of Afro Jazz. A renowned performer who’s shared the stages with a lot of big names who include the late Bra Hugh Masekela, Caiphus Semenya, Thandiswa Mazwai, Ladysmith Black Mambazo and Tshepo Tshola among others. His uncanny ability to capture audiences has made him one of the young acts to watch in 2019. He has performed at various festivals around the world.

 

 

“I love love, and singing about love makes me happy. Valentine’s day will very special at Hard Rock Cafe, I am putting on a sexy and unforgettable show” commented Joel.

 

Hard Rock Cafe is committed to opening its doors and stage to incredible South African acts, celebrating African music, exposing artists to its audiences. Tuesday shows are free and Thursday shows are at R100 at webtickets and R120 at the door.

 

Below are the shows Hard Rock Cafe is hosting this month:

 

YBS Trio (jazz band) – free show on Tuesday 12th February

 

Joel Zuma – Thursday 14th February

 

Yonela Mnana – Tuesday 19th February (free show)

 

Zoe Modiga – Thursday 21st February

 

YBS Trio – Tuesday 26th February (free show)

 

Urban Village – Thursday 28th February

 

All shows start from 20:00.

 

 

 

 

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