Holiday Swap KZN, the South African reality TV show which showcased holiday activities in KwaZulu-Natal while exploring the breath-taking landscape of the province – has won a major international content marketing award.
The show won the award for the Most Native Ad Format at the Drum Content Awards in the UK, beating off strong competition from campaigns by Philips and Mercedes Benz among others.
The Drum Content Awards, new for 2015, honour the best in modern marketing, with this award recognising the rise of native advertising.
Commenting on the win, the awards judges said; “Holiday Swap KZN was an engaging use of the TV game show format with high target audience appeal, as evidenced by an amazing uplift in viewer figures over the series and all executed on a very keen budget.”
The Drum is the UK’s largest marketing website, PPA Magazine of the Year and Media Brand of the Year.
Conceptualised by Launch Factory, Holiday Swap KZN was a partnership between Thebe Tourism Group and Tourism KZN aimed at transforming the travel industry by making local travel appealing, easy and affordable to the vast middle income South African consumer who has never travelled.
Each week, for 13 weeks, two teams of three friends were given the opportunity to compete against each other to win the holiday of their dreams on Holiday Swap KZN. However, just as the teams were geared up and ready to battle it out for an ultimate holiday, their ‘dream’ holidays were swapped for a completely different experience. And it was host and actress Nomzamo Mbatha who managed all the drama in the weekly episodes of Holiday Swap KZN on SABC 1.
“The concept of Holiday Swap that we developed alongside Launch Factory was at first met with skepticism – using a new platform of branded content on television in the tourism sector was a foreign concept to many. We were delighted that Tourism KwaZulu-Natal saw the same potential we did and were willing to share the risk of trying a concept previously untested on the South African market with us,” says Thebe Services CEO Jerry Mabena, partners in Holiday Swap.
“After many months of planning, filming and post-production, the end results that millions of viewers saw on their television screens was nothing short of inspiring. The recognition received through this accolade is a very proud moment for every team member who worked tirelessly to create the quality production collectively achieved. To be recognised on a global scale by The Drum Content Awards, competing against big brands like Mercedes and Phillips, is a milestone and highlight to a project we are proud to have our name associated with,” Mabena says.
Spero Patricios, managing director of Launch Factory, says; “There is no doubt that branded content is the way to engage consumers and make your product more compelling to todays linked consumers. Launch Factory would like to thank the Drum Content Awards for this recognition, particularly in view of the compelling competition from brand campaigns by Philips and Mercedes Benz who also produced hard hitting native ad content.”
“Furthermore we would like to thank our clients Tourism KwaZulu-Natal and Thebe Tourism Group for the vision and belief in native advertising as an engaging and innovative communication tool that creates meaningful touch points between brands and consumers,” says Patricios.