Publicis Groupe Africa Boasts 12 Judges at 2024 IAB Bookmarks

 Q&A with Robyn Campbell

Robyn Campbell, IAB South Africa Agency Council lead and MD of creative-solutions agency Machine_ (part of Publicis Groupe Africa) talks about innovation and trends in digital marketing and the importance of awarding purpose-driven and transformative work.

Q: What are some of the new digital marketing trends emerging in South Africa that you’re expecting to see more of this year?
A: I know I’m not alone in eagerly waiting to see how generative AI is going to show up. From the tools used to the dynamic execution of campaigns, it’s going to be incredible seeing how creativity intersecting with this emergent technology will bring ideas to life in new, unexpected ways.

 Q: ‘Best Contribution to Transformation in the Digital Industry’ is one of the categories judged by the Special Honours Panel, for the organisation or the person who has made the most convincing contribution to growing diversity in the digital marketing industry in SA. Robyn, you have been personally awarded as an individual and leader in the industry for your commitment to supporting and nurturing young, diverse talent in SA. What are some key factors that you take into consideration when judging this category?
A: Great question. We’re looking for true digital innovators. The talents who have passionately led the charge in growing the digital economy in South Africa through their work, businesses, thought leadership and generosity of spirit. We’re looking for the changemakers who have relentlessly driven for the advancement of the industry, of young talent all while empowering agencies and brands to thrive in the digital landscape.

Q: On one hand, studies show that purpose-driven brands outperform their competitors in terms of loyalty, while other studies show that purpose-driven marketing has become so commonplace that it’s no longer a differentiator for audiences – in terms of capturing attention. Can you talk more to the ‘Pixel for Purpose’ award and its significance in the SA landscape today.
A: We know in South Africa there is a tremendous amount of work to be done to ensure our marketing is truly representative and inclusive, working to shift those ingrained societal biases. Pixel for Purpose is a particularly special award, one that honours how digital marketing can create work that delivers social impact, along with long term sustainable change. Creating work with this gravity and care isn’t an easy task, particularly in this tough economy with limited marketing budgets and increasingly sales driven metrics being awarded the lion share of budgets. When brands are brave enough to create work that uses creativity to drive meaningful and long-term behaviour change, that’s pure magic and deserves so much recognition.

Q&A With Pete Little

Pete Little – South Africa’s top-scoring and no.1 ECD, as per Loeries rankings – joined Publicis Groupe Africa as Chief Creative Officer in January and is on the 2024 Bookmarks ‘Marketers’ panel. Here he talks about what makes excellent marketing work and what he’s on the lookout for at this year’s Bookmark Awards:

Q: What trends in marketing work are we expecting to see this year that we haven’t seen before?
A: “Innovative use of existing tech and platforms will still be a feature this year I think, but the drive for creating unique brand experiences will hopefully provide some ‘never seen before’ solutions.”

Q: One of the categories judged on the marketers panel is “Breakthrough on a Budget”. With so many budgets being cut over the past year, what is the secret recipe/sauce to creating a successful marketing campaign on a shoestring?
A: “Work with your client partners to ensure the brief and objectives are simple, clear and achievable. Then there is often a mind shift that needs to happen from one of ‘in spite of the budget, we want to make a great idea’ to ‘regardless of the budget, the idea will be great’. It has to be said though, that if this was easy, everyone would be doing it and we wouldn’t have a specialised category for it.”

 Q: Another category being judged on the Marketers Panel is “online video content” that is not a brand TVC. Can you talk to the key differences in approach when it comes to making successful online video content VS TVCs.
A: Format should always be a primary consideration when it comes to content. While a TV audience is generally broader and more generic, an online audience will be more targeted and discerning; with their preferences and tastes heightened due to the bespoke, curated content on the platform they’re currently on.

 Congrats to the PGA representatives on the Bookmarks 2024 Jury

Congratulations to all talent who have been selected to represent their agency and Publicis Groupe Africa as jury members this year:

Roderick Laka, Machine_ Creative Group Head – Youth Action Panel
Vuyani Masango, Digitas Liquorice Art Director – Youth Action Panel
Pete Little, Publicis Groupe Africa CCO – Marketers Panel
Nkululeko Vilikazi, Machine_ CD – Marketers Panel
 Ntokozo Nhlanhla, Digitas Liquorice ECD – Marketing Craft Panel
Kuhle Verby, ARC Digital Marketing Lead – Performance Marketing Panel
Paul Coetzer, LePub CD – Social, community & Influencer Marketing panel
Samkelisiwe Mndaweni, Digitas Liquorice Snr SMM – Social, Community & Influencer Marketing Panel
Shareef Galveen, Digitas Liquorice Head of Design – Builders Panel
Warren le Roux, Digitas Liquorice Head of Technical – Innovative Engineers Panel
Paula Hulley, Digitas Liquorice MD – Special Honours Panel
Robyn Campbell, Machine_ MD – Special Honours Panel

 Finalists are announced on the 11th of July before a second round of judging. The awards show takes place on 15 August. For more information on the IAB Bookmark Awards, visit:

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