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The IAB extends its condolences on the sad passing of Ed Linington

The Press Council of South Africa is saddened by the death of Ed Linington, who served it for 10 years as its Press Ombudsman. A giant of South African journalism, Ed was also a catalyst in the evolution of the council.

He retired as editor of the South African Press Agency (SAPA) in 1992, but five years later became the Press Ombudsman in what was then named the Office of the Press Ombudsman.  Ten years later he recruited the current executive director of the council, Joe Thloloe, to succeed him as Ombudsman.

Ed was never one for the limelight, but he did sterling work, quietly serving his craft of journalism, his nation and its democracy.

It was during his stewardship that the Press Council shifted gears a few times to align itself with the emerging democracy, transforming what was the Constituent Bodies of the Ombudsman’s Office into the Press Council and then increasing the public participation in its affairs to the level of five public representatives against six press ones. (Today the non-media voice in the Press Council is bigger than the media voice.)

The Press Council will miss his wisdom and his vast knowledge of the history of media regulation in South Africa.

Our condolences go to his widow, Vivien, his children and the rest of the Linington family.

Reach thousands of automotive enthusiasts

SPARK Ignition Target has got this market covered

SPARK Ignition Target is SPARK’s programmatic and direct audience solution which, through our Data Management Platform (DMP), has the capability to collect and deliver relevant, customised interest based audiences. This provides advertisers with the opportunity to speak to potential buyers across the Caxton network of premium news and lifestyle focused publisher websites, in a brand safe environment.

Since its inception in 2016, our DMP has collected an audience in excess of 2.9 million people contributing to various interest categories making Spark Ignition Target a valuable channel for large effective reach.

About Audience Spotlight

Every month we will be putting the spotlight on relevant audience clusters by interest group. Clients can then buy these appropriate segments via various options (either directly or programmatically).

What is an interest based audience?

These people are sorted into specific interest categories according to their browsing behaviour across a network of websites. For example, if a user visits automotive focused pages on website(s) within the Caxton network during a rolling 90 day period, that user is pulled into an automotive enthusiast group (also known as an interest based audience).

It enables publishers to;

  1. Offer advertisers the opportunity to advertise to a specific audience with a specific message (banner advertising with an audience target)
  2. Offer advertisers the opportunity to buy this audience and target them with their programmatic buying desks (data buying)
  3. Ensure site content is matching the interests expressed by users

This month the Spotlight is on: THE AUTOMOTIVE ENTHUSIAST

Across SPARK Ignition Target we can reach 372 000 automotive enthusiasts and have 8.8 million impressions available across our network, monthly. We can target 207 600 female and 41 700 male automotive enthusiasts.



  1. DIRECT:
    • Premium, targeted banner advertising at R200 CPM
    • Inventory with automotive audience overlay at R80 CPM
    • Automotive audience data only at R40 CPM

Are you interested in this audience or is there another interest category that you would like to reach?
Contact us on or chat to your sales contact for a custom package (010 492 8385)

Programmatic for dummies


SPARK Media’s programmatic arm – SPARK ignition launched in November. Here are some tips on how to get your programmatic advertising started.

Getting started if you have a buying desk:

ignition SELL. is an ad exchange that enables buyers to buy display and mobile advertising space through preferred deals and private, real-time auctions. Publishers that form part of this offering include the likes of the Citizen, Woman and Home Magazine, Caxton’s Local News Network (+76 local news websites), All4Women and many more premium publishers.

ignition TARGET. is run off an internationally recognised DMP (data management platform). It is a programmatic and direct audience (IO buys) solution providing advertisers with the opportunity to target unique audiences across a network of premium, news and lifestyle focused publisher websites. Advertisers have the option to target audiences based on their browsing behaviour as well as demographic targeting.

Getting started with ignition SELL. and/or TARGET. :

  1. Contact our programmatic team with the following information
    • Target market segments (audiences) and volume requirements
    • Inventory volumes requirements
    • eCPM rate expectations
  2. We will then create preferred deals with your programmatic buying desk and/or add your desk into a private auction
  3. We will inform your buying desk by email/telephone that the deals and auctions have been set-up
  4. Your buying desk will accept and/or negotiate rates and can then start trading and running campaigns

Getting started if you don’t have a buying desk:

In addition to ignition SELL. and TARGET. we offer a programmatic buying service to clients who do not have direct access to programmatic buying desks. ignition BUY. has access to an array of websites and can target users specifically to meet clients’ objectives.

Getting Started with ignition BUY.:

  1. Contact our programmatic team with the following information
    • Target market segments (audiences) and volumes
    • Inventory volumes
  2. We will come back to you with an eCPM or eCPC rate, then you approve rate
  3. We will generate an IO to be signed and approved
  4. You will provide your creative
  5. We will provide you with a tracking pixel to be placed on your landing/conversion page
  6. Once the pixel has been placed and is firing, the campaign will begin

SPARK Media will guide you – we want to make Programmatic advertising easy for you!

Contact for more information



SPARK Media has officially launched its Programmatic advertising offering entitled SPARK ignition BUY. SELL. TARGET.

ignition SELL. is a private market place (PMP) tool incorporating premium South African websites that are part of, or affiliated to, the Caxton CTP Group of Publishers.

This PMP is unique to the South African digital advertising market not only because it has access to inventory that is hyper-local (owing to the local newspaper websites), but it also has access to inventory that covers a broad range of interests such as breaking news, female lifestyle interests, sports, business and many more.

“This is a very important step taken by SPARK Media in allowing advertisers to target relevant audience segments across our Group’s sites as an alternative to buying site specific impressions,” says Marc du Plessis, SPARK Media’s Joint CEO.

“We know that more advertisers are starting to allocate increasing budgets to Programmatic advertising buys, but often are not certain of the quality of the inventory they’re buying, or where their brand actually ends up.  This is where a PMP comes in, eliminating transparency and brand safety issues.”

“While we’re very excited about the prospects of ignition SELL. we’re still firm in the belief that a true and transparent South African market place should exist for South African publishers.  Something we would most certainly support and become a part of,” added du Plessis.

SPARK Media believes that the success of programmatic advertising relies heavily on the ability to target the right audience, with the right message in the right place.

Inventory bought through ignition SELL. can be overlaid with audience data layers improving the quality of inventory to buyers, further enhancing and improving the user experience and performance metrics. In simple terms we can target the right person with the right message on the right website.

ignition SELL is the perfect one-stop online display and mobile shop for clients who want to buy advertising space through premium direct (IO buys), preferred deals or private auctions. Reaching 6.1 million unique browsers, 31 million page views (Effective Measure: October 2016) and over 50 million ad impressions every month.

Publishers that form part of this offering include The Citizen, Woman and Home magazine, Caxton’s Local News Network (LNN) (+76 local news websites), All4Women and many more premium publishers.

ignition TARGET. is an offering run off an internationally recognised DMP (data management platform). It is a programmatic and direct audience (IO buys) solution providing advertisers with the opportunity to target unique audiences across a network of premium, news and lifestyle focused publisher websites. Advertisers have the option to target audiences based on their browsing behaviour as well as demographic targeting.

For more information about our ignition BUY. SELL or TARGET offerings please send an email to Ashleigh Footit on or call us on 010 492 8390



BlueMagnet’s Digital Marketing Training Academy announces nominees for top achievers in digital marketing and search engine optimisation, to be recognised at the first ever Digital Academy Awards Ceremony to be held next month.

Celebrating a decade in digital empowerment BlueMagnet will be hosting the first ever awards in South Africa, established to recognise, applaud and celebrate individuals who have excelled

across various digital marketing programmes at an exclusive ceremony to be held in Sandton on 24th August 2017.

Gillian Meier, CEO and founder of BlueMagnet comments: “The digital industry continuously recognises innovative agencies and brands at a number of prestigious awards; however we felt that it was time to showcase the intellects behind these successful campaigns and brands. These individuals have invested considerable time and effort into acquiring the skills to support these brands’ successes.”

BlueMagnet’s training programmes are widely attended by practitioners from more than 50 of South Africa’s top digital agencies and hundreds of brands. “Without the backing of solid foundational skills, the industry would not flourish at the pace it has been. We want to recognise and reward those individuals who are committed to driving the digital industry forward through continued professional development; as well as the companies who consistently invest in upskilling their employees with the latest in digital marketing trends.” Says Ceri James, CIO and Partner at BlueMagnet.

The awards ceremony will be a cumulative evening of digital minds coming together to honor 127 professionals who have achieved outstanding results in the following categories over the past 3 years:

  • The Digital Marketing Institute’s International Digital Marketing Professional Certification;
  • Search Engine Optimisation Professional Certification endorsed by SEOPSA;
  • Practical demonstration for delivering a Digital Marketing Strategy;
  • Recognition for perfect scores in the digital marketing strategy, planning, SEO, PPC, Display, Mobile, Social Media and Analytics courses;
  • Overall top Digital Marketing Professional; and
  • Overall to top Search Engine Optimisation Professional.

BlueMagnet has been a certified training partner to the Digital Marketing Institute (the global standard in digital marketing education) since 2012, and has been delivering SEO training of the highest and most ethical standards expected under the SEOPSA (Association for Search Engine Optimisation Professionals in South Africa) code of conduct since 2007. Over the past 10 years, BlueMagnet has empowered over 4,000 individuals across South Africa, as well as students from other parts of Africa, with the highest standard of digital marketing skills.

In the words of Nelson Mandela; “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” This is a gift that we want to continue to bestow upon aspiring and passionate digital marketers in our country.  In continued efforts to empower and strengthen the professional scope and digital skills available in the market, BlueMagnet will be giving away R1 million in bursaries to the top achievers to continue their personal development in the digital marketing field, by participating in an elite Digital Marketing Masters Programme designed to establish a pilot benchmark for Digital Marketing Professional designations in South Africa. The programme will be the most comprehensive amalgamation of rigorous practical and theoretical learning outcomes across all digital channels to produce the “Best of Breed” digital practitioners, who will drive digital forward in South Africa under the most stringent guidelines and standards.

On the back of its 10 year anniversary, BlueMagnet wants thank those individuals and organisations that have chosen BlueMagnet as their preferred knowledge partner. It’s been said that: “Achievement is the source of (an) additional greatness to come. It is the constant stimuli to purpose”. So how can we not strive to grant credit where it is due.

All information regarding the academy awards will be communicated on our site  To find out more about BlueMagnet, please go to our site

MEET PAULA HULLEY – Head of Digital & Innovation for Ogilvy CT


The IAB talks to Paula Hulley in a series of interviews with our nine Heads of Councils.

Who are you?

I am the Head of Digital & Innovation for Ogilvy CT, Vice Chair and Head of the Agency Council at the IAB. Passionate about achieving the impossible with amazing teams and creating connected experiences that innovate with brands & consumers in a meaningful and remarkable way. Proud Mom to Céline Fantastic and grateful to an incredible support network that partner with me to do what I love every day.

Find me on LinkedIn
Find me on Twitter

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Release: 365 Digital launches programmatic Private Marketplace (PMP)

South African publisher solutions business, 365 Digital, have launched their premium programmatic Private Marketplace.

A Private Marketplace (PMP) is where private, invitation-only digital advertising deals are bought and sold programmatically over a curated list of premium websites. A PMP is a tool specifically found in the programmatic space; a type of buying mechanic allowing specific deal types to be transacted without the hassles of signing Insertion Orders.


A PMP is the answer to running programmatic campaigns transparently, efficiently and cost effectively in brand safe environments. Deliberately built with only premium South African inventory, the 365 PMP was crafted using a very strict curation process.

A few of the properties in the 365 PMP include:









As the PMP grows, more premium sites will be added but only if they meet the stringent standards for premium classification. Currently, there are several sites being vetted which, should they crack the nod, will appear on the PMP in August or early September 2017.

Buying media via the 365 PMP:

Premium inventory can be bought by agencies, trading desks and programmatic advertisers in the following ways through any recognised Demand Side Platform (DSP):

  • Guaranteed Deals:

This is a pre-negotiated fixed price deal between publisher and advertiser for a guaranteed number of impressions. Inventory can be bought across specific sites, verticals or for all the sites in the PMP. Advertisers can overlay 1st party audience data or purchase audience data from within the PMP. Deal IDs will be created and sent to buyers to allow access to the inventory.

  • Preferred deals:

Here we arrange a pre-negotiated fixed CPM price deal between publisher and advertiser for a variable number of impressions. These deals are based on a RTB (Real-Time Bidding) basis within the private auction. Again, specific sites can be targeted or verticals or all the sites in the PMP. 1st or 3rd party data can be used and a deal ID will be sent to buyers. Preferred Deals do not guarantee impressions but still get priority and exclusive access to inventory over the open exchange.

  • Private Auction:

This is a private or invitation-only auction between select publishers and buyers with a pre-negotiated price floor. These deals types are similar to open exchange buys, but instead of competing with thousands of buyers for impressions, buyers are selected to participate in the auction at the publisher’s discretion. Deals are executed programmatically via RTB (Real-Time Bidding). Inventory will be dependent on bids won and all data overlays are still allowed.

It’s important to note that while the PMP is built to make premium inventory available programmatically, the inventory is also still available on a traditional IO basis

If agencies or brands don’t have programmatic capabilities, Mark1 Media, the sister company of 365 Digital is able to facilitate this.

Whether publishers want to increase their revenue or agencies and advertisers wanting to buy premium inventory programmatically, the 365 Digital PMP is open for business and looking forward to growing this space in South Africa.

For more information contact 365 Digital:

Dominique Warr
Head of Marketing & Public Relations
Mark1 Media
072 621 3389

You can download a copy by clicking hereRelease – 365 Digital launches programmatic Private Marketplace

365 Digital PMP Landscape

Meet Marc Du Plessis – Incoming Chair of the IAB Publisher council

Marc du Plessis

The IAB talks to Marc Du Plessis in a series of interviews with our nine Heads of Councils.

Who are you?

I am the incoming Chair of the IAB Publisher council. I am also the joint-CEO of Spark Media, an advertising and media solutions sales house. We are firm believers in revolutionary, evidence-based marketing principles and invest heavily into local South African research. I have 11 years’ experience in the media and publishing industry, and for the last 8 years, a real focus in digital transformation and digital innovation.

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Team IAB

IAB South Africa is looking for a full time Administration Manager

IAB SA, is an independent, voluntary, non-profit association focused on growing and sustaining a vibrant and profitable digital industry in South Africa.

Play an active role in nurturing South Africa’s digital industry; we are looking for a dynamic self-starter that shares our passion for growing digital in South Africa, to manage the day-to-day administration of the digital trade association.

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