Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Discover The Free State

Last week I was invited by SA Tourism to go on a media trip of The Free State.  It was all part of their #TourismForAll campaign which is aimed at getting more people to travel throughout South Africa during Tourism Month which is in September.

The main aim is to get people who don’t generally travel to start travelling around South Africa.   Special deals are being negotiated with hotels and tourism companies so that those that don’t normally travel due to monetary concerns can now travel.

So just what does the Free State offer and why should you go there? 

Well our first stop was a wonderful venue the Legae La Khumo Lodge it has family rooms, log cabins, a lapa, cash bar, braai area, conference facilities and Wi-Fi.  They made a delicious meal for us.
Find out more about them at
Visit them at 60 Oost Street, Thaba Nchu.
Call on 078-566-1014 or email on

Bloemfontein itself has some wonderful sights to visit.

Take a trip to POELANONG a Day of Reconciliation Memorial which has writings in English, Afrikaans, Southern Sotho and Braille.

President Brand Street has many monuments in it as well.

Bloemfontein is the traditional capital of South Africa.  The Appeal Court of South Africa is in Bloemfontein.  Keep an eye out for the Waldorf, it is a German Built structure in the city.
You will find the Literature Museum, The High Court, The Magistrates Court and The Old Presidency in Bloemfontein.

The Old Presidency Museum

The Old Presidency, named because The Presidents of the OFS used to live there, is now a museum.
Entrance is free.  Find it on the corner of President Brand and St George Streets in Bloemfontein.
Tel: 051-448-0949

It really is worth a visit and you can find rooms there that show you what it was like to live a long time ago.
The Old Presidency even has a ghost in it reportedly.  ‘Dis n’ spookhuis’ said one man to me as I entered.

The Grave Of Emily Hobhouse

 The Anglo Boere War Museum is also worth a visit.  It features spectacular monuments and here you will also find the National Women’s Monument and the grave of Emily Hobhouse.

Take a Township Tour through Mangaung Township and see where the ANC was born in 1912.  There are also different sections such as the ‘4 and 6 Stands’ because you had to pay 4 pounds or 6 pounds for your stand.

There is also the ‘Sports Stand’ because a sports facility was built for black people.  It was called the Caleb Motshabi Centre.
In this township you will also find a Youth Monument.

Nelson Mandela Statue - Naval Hill

We headed to Naval Hill as well and you will find that it is within a nature reserve.  If you keep your eyes open you might spot some of the wildlife there.

There’s also a statue of Nelson Mandela there and the Hill features some spectacular views of Bloemfontein so don’t forget your camera. 

For adventurous people you could also walk up the hill.  There are plans to develop it into a Tourism Centre.

We stayed at Poisanong guesthouse while in Bloemfontein.  A really nice place to stay.

For our final night in Bloemfontein we had a delicious dinner at Emoya Estate at the Spookhuis.  They have a wide variety of meals from tasty starters to burgers to steaks to salads to waffles and the list goes on and on.  The Estate also has a plane on it which you can explore. 

Gariep - A Forever Resort

 Our final part of the tour took us to Gariep Dam.  We checked in at Gariep A Forever Resort.  The perfect spot if you are taking your family.  It has some wonderful activities.  For our final night we attended a gala dinner with the Minister of Tourism, Derek Hanekom.  He emphasised that tourism should be more accessible for everyone.  Hence September is Tourism Month.

Gariep Dam

You can go on a tour of the Dam one of the biggest dams in the world.  It was completed in 1972 and supplies water to Eskom.  It was built by an international consortium.  It really is a sight to behold. 
Other activities to look out for are the 4x4 tractor ride and the boat ride.  For the boat ride pack something warm if you go in the late afternoon as it can get cold.  It features spectacular views of the dam so pack your camera.

The Resort itself features activities such as tennis, bowls, volley ball, fishing, sailing, mini golf, swimming pools, canoeing, motor boating, bird watching, walking trails, picnic areas, conferencing and much more.

To book some of the activities and for more info visit
To book a room call 051 754 0045 or email

Our tour guides along the way were Thabile Tours & Shuttles and they really were full of knowledge. So if you need a tour guide or shuttle email or visit or call 084-412-0845

For more info on special deals in Bloemfontein and South Africa visit

Twitter: @ShotLeft           Facebook: Sho’t Left       Hashtag: #TourismForAll

Article by Fred Felton  - Twitter: @fredfelton

Fred Felton was a guest of South African Tourism on this trip.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Highlights from the DStv Seminar of Creativity at the Loeries 2016

Here are some of the highlights from this seminar.  It featured top speakers from around the world.

Sarah Personette from Facebook

Here are some of the highlights from her talk:
‘’In some countries there are more mobile devices than there are people’’
‘’I believe that one of your greatest exports will be creativity’’
‘’Wi-fi is a luxury’’
‘’You consume content faster on mobile’’
‘’If you can stop thumbs you can grow business’’
‘’We built the platform and people bring the magic’’
‘’Over 100 million of hours of video are served every day’’
‘’8 billion daily video views’’
‘’We believe that the future is video’’
‘’Tell your story visually’’
‘’The Creative Hub is coming to Facebook in September’’
‘’Start by Starting’’

Debra Mallowah from Unilever

Here is what she had to say:
‘’40 percent of women don’t identify with women’s ads’’
‘’It’s important for brands to stay relevant’’

Laura Jordan-Bambach from Mr President

She had the following to say:
‘’To do different you need to be different’’
‘’Question bravely, answer boldly’’
‘’Allow room for experimentation’’
‘’Team up.  Collaboration is Queen’’
‘’Question.  Make your own opportunities’’
‘’Empathy is the most important skill for any creative’’
‘’What’s the one thing you are going to start making tomorrow?’’
Find her on Twitter @laurajaybee

Marco Cremona from Google Creative Lab

He had the following to say:
‘’The bigger the ego the smaller the echo’’
‘’The product is the idea’’
‘’Users above all’’
‘’Demos and documentaries not ads’’
‘’Make people smile, cry or think’’

Bridget Jung of Marcel Sydney showed us how technology imagined in the past is now here.  She also showed us a fascinating video of how ink is being made from pollution.
For more info visit

Susan Credle from FCB gave us some wonderful insight into the world of advertising and what makes good ads.
She emphasized the following: ‘’It’s our responsibility to use advertising for good’’

Jimmy Smith of Amusement Park showed us what it is like working in advertising agencies and gave us the following great insight into working in a multi-cultural agency:

‘’When you have cultures that smash together in a company magic happens’’

For those of you that missed the seminar there’s always next year.

There is still much to do at Loeries Creative Week:

Download the Loeries App, you can get reminders, check into events, connect with delegates and much more.  Search for Loeries 2016 in the app store. Available for iOS  and Android.

You can also check out the DStv Beach Café in front of the Elangeni. A cool place to hang out.  To make a booking call 031-337-7700

20th and 21st August – Loeries Awards Ceremony – ICC

Joe Ride – Sunday 21st August – A fun beach cycle ride with Joe Public.  Time: 11am
Start and Finish at DStv Beach Café

21st August – I Heart Loeries Market. Time: 9am Venue: Beachfront Amphitheatre

For more info visit

Find them on Twitter @loeries

Instagram: Loerieawards

Facebook: The Loeries


Article by Fred Felton
Twitter @fredfelton

Thursday, August 18, 2016

PRISA Conference 2016 Durban - Day Two

Today the conference continued with some more interesting speakers.

Linda Magapatona of Brand SA shared the following:

‘’Every 12 Tourists is a job created’’

‘’There’s enough negativity out there without having to contribute to it’’

‘’Stay focused on what it is that you need to achieve’’

‘’Nobody represents you, you represent this country’’

Francois van Dyk of Ornico / Amec   gave us some insight into an Integrated Evaluation Framework.

He offered the following:

‘’How much is a tweet worth?’’

He showed us how one tweet from Oprah about Weight Watchers was worth $150 million.

He also told us to look out for amec Measurement Month from 1 – 30 September 2016.

He suggested delegates check out the hashtag #AMECMM during the month during which valuable information, education and much more will be shared during the month.

Thabisile Phumo of Sibanye Gold delved into Business Acumen.   These were some of her highlights:

‘’Workers are the eyes and ears of the business’’

‘’PR is strategic’’

‘’What are people talking about in the boardroom?  Strategy, Performance, ROI, Compliance and Governance, Risk Management, Innovation and People’’

‘’You have to understand the country that you operate in’’

‘’How do you do strategy?  Through research’’

‘’Your job as a PR agency is to help a company deliver on its goals’’

‘’Sometimes gossip is better than social media’’

‘’Own the communication channel’’

‘’Understand the company you represent for example if your client is a mining company do you know what mining is?’’

Daniel Munslow gave us Insight into the South African Communication Landscape:

‘’One of the biggest pressures are downward pressures on budget’’

‘’People leave jobs because of line managers not engaging with staff’’

‘’Some companies are still scared of social media’’

Francois Vorster talked about how to make PR thrive in a digital landscape.  He had this to say:

‘’Top searched for word in South Africa is free’’

‘’PR is getting or creating exposure’’

‘’When last did you send something that needed a stamp?’’

The conference concluded today. 

For more info on PRISA visit:


The conference was part of Loeries Creative Week.

For more info on the other events this week visit:


Article by Fred Felton

Twitter @fredfelton 

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

PRISA Conference 2016 Durban - Day One

Today I attended the PRISA (Public Relations Institute of Southern Africa) Conference.  It is being held in Durban as part of the Loeries Creative Week.

These were some of the highlights from Day One:

There is now new terminology in PR.

Roela Hattingh of the University of Johannesburg gave us the following insight:

‘’Gatewatching – the idea of watching without taking over’’

‘’Gatekeeping has been changed to gatewatching’’

‘’Learning is an active constructive process, learning also depends on rich contexts’’

‘’What are the products that you have memories with?’’

She went on to show us how students were using Instagram for an alcohol brand campaign because that is where their target audience is.

Prof. Sonja Verwey looked at the rise of PR or the fall of the agency model.  She reminded us of the following:

‘’Agencies don’t trust their clients anymore’’

‘’Clients complain of overpricing’’

‘’We are now in the age of digital disruption’’

‘’PR Agencies need to understand their clients business needs’’

‘’Clients don’t have agencies that tell them what the data means’’

Clarissa Muir of the University of Johannesburg reminded agencies to embrace digital as a business tool.  She also emphasised that to maintain a thriving business you need to change the business model when necessary.

Rene Benecke of the University of Johannesburg gave us insight from the history of PR education in South Africa, a critical analysis:

‘’There needs to be an Afrocentric model of PR’’

‘’Communication happens on all levels’’

‘’Listening is important’’

Tasneem Carrim gave us insight from GCIS Research and she shared the following:

‘’In order to influence the public we need to talk to the influencers’’

‘’South Africans take politics very seriously’’

She showed us various sections of South Africans:
S1 – Rooted Realists – They stay where they are
S2 – City Seekers – Majority are young
S3 – Safely Suburban – Middle Class People and People who live in Gated Estates
S4 – Metro Mobiles – City Bound
S5 – Cosmopolitan Capital – LSM 9 – 10 and Older People and Affluent people
We also heard from Adolf Spangenberg on The Next Generation and how brands will communicate.
He had the following to say:

‘’Video will lead’’

‘’Every single one of us every single day engage with video’’

‘’Make sure that what people click through to is of value’’

He also stated that video needs to be at the beginning of your strategy not as an add on.

The conference continues tomorrow.

For more info visit:


Article by Fred Felton

Twitter @fredfelton 

Monday, August 15, 2016

Loeries Creative Week in Durban

There are plenty of events on in Durban this week all around the Loeries.  Those are those awards that every advertising company craves for.

Here are just some of the events on the go:

PRISA National Conference – Wed 17th August – Thu 18th August   
Venue: Tsogo Sun Elangeni Hotel
The Conference for all of those in the Public Relations Industry.

Loeries Expo Thu 18th Aug – Fri 19th Aug   Venue: ICC

Loeries Masterclasses 18th Aug

MMA SA Mobile Marketing Leadership Forum – Thu 18th Aug  Venue:  Tsogo Sun Elangeni Hotel

DStv Seminar of Creativity – Features top industry speakers – Fri 19th Aug   Venue: ICC

MMA Smarties – Fri 19th Aug

The Loeries Awards – Sat 20th Aug and Sun 21 Aug

I Heart Loeries Market – Sun 21 Aug

For more info on all the events visit


Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Women's Month Events Around Durban

There are plenty of events around Durban for Women's Month

Networking Event - 11  August - 8am - Hirsch's Umhlanga

African Art Centre - 11 August -  17h30 

imbizo Gallery Ballito - 11 August - 18h30 

 Celebrating Women - 28 August - email to book

Monday, August 1, 2016

Calling All Aspiring Screenwriters


Award winning film and television production company, Coal Stove Pictures, is inviting
all writers that have a desire for a career in the television and film industry to apply to
The Hot Plate Scriptwriting Incubation Programme. This exciting programme combines
the elements of an internship, a writing course and an incubator, into a three month
course that will take place in Newtown Johannesburg.

1 hour personal career planning and mentorship.
A weekly 4hour session of intensive group screenwriting coaching over the 12week
Training in the award winning Coal Stove proprietary feature script development methodology.
Participation in the Coal Stove Script Reader Programme.
Participation in various scriptwriting workshops such as Writing Procedural Dramas and Writing
the Hollywood Blockbuster.
Screenwriting software practical training (Scrivener, Scapple and Final Draft)

Submit your C.V. and a motivation letter to
The application email subject line should be "SUBMISSION: HOT PLATE INCUBATION PROGRAMME".

Failure to use the correct subject line may result in the application not being processed.
Late submissions will not be accepted.
Queries need to be submitted via email before the closing date.

15th of August 2016.