The Christian market in South Africa is largely unexplored, both by media players and advertisers. Sure, there are media offerings that cater to the market across print, radio, television and even cinema, but there is so much more space for media entities to make their mark. And for advertisers, the same is true. While they have scratched the surface of the market with their advertising, there is so much more depth to it, that is yet to be discovered.
There are two main benefits of the Christian market for advertisers. Firstly, the audience is very clearly defined. There is no guess work as to the general characteristics of the potential consumers, as these are promoted as being along the lines of Christian values. Honesty, integrity, family-orientated, and hard-working are just some of the clear characteristics, combined with dedication to their faith. The other main benefit is the size of the potential consumer base. Some people say that South Africa is a Christian nation, as it is the predominant religion. According to the latest RAMS numbers for radio stations belonging to the Association of Christian Media (ACM), there are 1.211 million people listening. Radio Pulpit has just over 12% of these listeners at 150,000. A further (estimated) 289,000 people listen to Christian stations that are not part of the ACM. This offers advertisers massive exposure, if the right media platform sends out the right message.
The one factor that needs to be considered by both media players and advertisers is the diversity of the market. While the individuals in it are all labelled as Christian, there are different groupings within this market. These include Charismatics, Evangelicals, and African Independent Churches, just to name a few. Each has their own subtle nuances, even though they can all be grouped under the Christian banner. Taking note of these slight differences and tailoring messages along their lines, will lead to more success for advertisers. Radio Pulpit stands out from the rest as it is, not only, inter-denominational but also broadcasts in all 11 of South Africa’s official languages. This means that the station caters to all Christians in South Africa.
In conclusion, the South African Christian market offers a wealth of opportunity for both media players and advertisers. But it is how they go about exploring and researching this market that could make all the difference in succeeding in grasping these opportunities.
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