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CUBE [ON THE SQUARE]: Luisa Mazinter & Winnifred Knight

A ‘pay it forward’ strategy pays back dividends for a marketing solutions company that establishes a local and international reputation as a thought leader.

Juliet Pitman

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Luisa Mazinter & Winnifred Knight

When Luisa Mazinter and Winnifred Knight, co-founders of integrated marketing solutions company CUBE [ON THE SQUARE], launched theMarketingSite.com in 1998, one of their key objectives was to share their knowledge with the marketing community about which they are so passionate.

Between them, the partners have more than 50 years’ worth of marketing experience. While Knight is recognised as a leading specialist in direct marketing, Mazinter is known for her digital marketing expertise.

“We set up theMarketingSite.com as a ‘pay it forward’, to give businesses of all sizes strategic advice, guidance and access to relevant information related to marketing and sales,” explains Mazinter. It turned out to be one of the best investments they could have made for CUBE [ON THE SQUARE].

Launched entirely at their own expense, without the benefit of the usual advertising revenue which keeps such sites afloat, and offering invaluable information free of charge to users, theMarketingSite.com continues to deliver significant benefits to their business, generating leads and firmly establishing their reputation as thought leaders in their sector.

The site has between 50 000 and 60 000 unique users a month, with 15 000 subscribing to theMarketingSite.com’s monthly newsletter.

Deriving other business benefits

The knowledge-sharing philosophy extends to the rest of CUBE [ON THE SQUARE]’s business. “When we are involved in writing strategy for clients, we believe in transferring skills. “It’s an uncommon practice among consultancies and agencies but we feel very strongly that it allows the client to see a direct return on their investment.

We know we’ve been successful when we make ourselves redundant,” Mazinter explains. The company’s track record speaks for itself in this regard – Deloitte, MTN, Hollard and Absa are just a few of its most recent clients.

While the marketing industry in general suffered a significant dip during the recession, CUBE [ON THE SQUARE] enjoyed its best year ever in 2009.

“Keeping our ear to the ground both locally and internationally has been important, because it allows us to foresee tough times ahead and plan accordingly. And because there are only two of us and our business model is to outsource certain things to our long-term suppliers, we were agile enough to adapt in response to the changing market conditions,” she says.

The long-term relationships established with clients by virtue of the company’s willingness to pass on skills and intellectual property also played a key role in ensuring the business continued to flourish at a time when competitors were floundering.

Thinking global

“Investing in keeping up to date with the latest international and local industry trends benefits not only the content on theMarketingSite.com but also our core business at CUBE[ON THE SQUARE],” says Knight, who has the esteem of the global marketing community.

She was the first woman and only person from Africa to have been elected onto the Global Advisory Board of the American Direct Marketing Association (DMA). This association, together with the partners’ reputation for establishing a truly useful marketing portal in South Africa, recently led to CUBE [ON THE SQUARE] signing a joint venture partnership with the DMA to develop a global portal for direct, digital and interactive marketing.

“The portal will become a central resource for marketing practitioners from around the world, sharing current trends, thought leadership, best practice, case studies, industry awards, the latest research, DMA accredited eLearning courses, a global suppliers directory and job board.

The idea is to provide a platform for networking, debate and discussion amongst a global network of marketers. Marketing associations around the world will have the opportunity to co-brand and customise the portal, update it with local content and then offer it to their own membership bases,” Mazinter explains.

Needless to say, the JV offers CUBE [ON THE SQUARE] significant opportunities to entrench its reputation as a leader on the world stage, and develop international relationships for new business. Both Mazinter and Knight were also invited to be judges for the 2010 USA DMA Echo Awards.

Recognised as the most prestigious direct and interactive marketing awards world-wide, judging for these took place in New York in June. “This opens up a whole new world of opportunity for us – and we mean to make the most of it,” Mazinter concludes.

Company: CUBE [ON THE SQUARE]
Players: Luisa Mazinter & Winnifred Knight
Est.1998
Contact: +27 82 575 9922, +27 82 654 4021
www.themarketingsite.com

Juliet Pitman is a features writer at Entrepreneur Magazine.

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27 Of The Richest People In South Africa

Here are 27 of South Africa’s richest people, but how did they achieve this level of wealth? Find out here.

Nicole Crampton

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Learn the secrets of SA’s most successful business people, here is the list of the 27 richest people in South Africa:

In a world with growing entrepreneurship success stories, victory is often measured in terms of money. The feat of achieving a place on this list is, however, years of hard work, determination and persistence. “One has to set high standards… I can never be happy with mediocre performance,” advises Patrice Motsepe.

From the individuals that made the 27 of the richest people in South Africa list, actual entrepreneurs and self-made business people dominate the list; while those who inherited their fortunes have gone on to do even bigger and better things with their wealth. Over the years, some have slipped off the list, while others continue to climb higher and higher each year.

  1. Elisabeth Bradley
  2. Sharon Wapnick
  3. Bridgette Radebe
  4. Irene Charnley
  5. Wendy Ackerman
  6. Paul Harris
  7. Wendy Appelbaum
  8. Mark Shuttleworth
  9. Desmond Sacco
  10. Giovanni Ravazzotti
  11. Markus Jooste
  12. Gus Attridge
  13. Gerrit Thomas Ferreira
  14. Cyril Ramaphosa
  15. Adrian Gore
  16. Raymond Ackerman
  17. Michiel Le Roux
  18. Lauritz Dippenaar
  19. Jannie Mouton
  20. Stephen Saad
  21. Patrice Motsepe
  22. Allan Gray
  23. Koos Bekker
  24. Ivan Glasenberg
  25. Christoffel Wiese
  26. Johann Rupert
  27. Nicky Oppenheimer
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Watch List: 50 Top SA Black Entrepreneurs To Watch

South Africa needs more entrepreneurs to build businesses that can make a positive impact on the economy. These up-and-coming black entrepreneurs are showing how it can be done.

Nicole Crampton

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Early-stage South African entrepreneurial activity is at an all-time high of 11%, according to Global Entrepreneurship Monitor, and entrepreneurial intentions have also increased to 11.7%. With both activity and intentions growing significantly year-on-year, there are more businesses opening up around South Africa than ever before.

The increase in entrepreneurship has seen the rise of more black entrepreneurs across numerous sectors. From beauty brands to legal services and even tech start-ups, these are 50 top black entrepreneurs to watch:

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Watch List: 50 Top SA Small Businesses To Watch

Keep your finger on the pulse of the start-up space by using our comprehensive list of SA small business to watch.

Nicole Crampton

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Entrepreneurship in South Africa is at an all-time high. According to Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM), total early-stage entrepreneurial activity has increased by 4.1% to 11% in 2017/2018. This means numerous new, exciting and promising small businesses are launching and growing.

To ensure you know who the innovative trailblazers are in the start-up and small business space, here are 50 of South Africa’s top establishing companies to watch, in no particular order:

  1. Livestock Wealth
  2. The Lazy Makoti
  3. Aerobuddies
  4. Mimi Women
  5. i-Pay
  6. AfriTorch Digital
  7. Akili Labs
  8. Native Décor
  9. Aerobotics
  10. Quality Solutions
  11. EM Guidance
  12. Kahvé Road
  13. HSE Matters
  14. VA Virtual Assistant
  15. Famram Solutions and Famram Foundation
  16. BioTech Africa
  17. Brand LAIKI
  18. Plus Fab
  19. LifeQ
  20. Organico
  21. 10dot
  22. Lenoma Legal
  23. Nkukhu-Box
  24. Benji + Moon
  25. Beonics
  26. Brett Naicker Wines
  27. Khalala
  28. Legal Legends
  29. The Power Woman Project
  30. Aviro Health
  31. AnaStellar Brands
  32. Data Innovator
  33. Fo-Sho
  34. Oolala Collection Club
  35. Recomed
  36. VoiceMap
  37. ClockWork
  38. Empty Trips
  39. Vula Mobile
  40. SwiitchBeauty
  41. Pineapple
  42. The Katy Valentine Collection
  43. OfferZen
  44. KHULA
  45. Incitech
  46. Pimp my Book
  47. ART Technologies and ART Call Management
  48. Prosperiprop
  49. WAXIT
  50. The Sun Exchange
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