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Tag 8 Media: Andrew Franks

An alternative media company taps into the receptiveness of consumers while they enjoy their favourite beverage.

Juliet Pitman



Andrew Franks of Tag 8 Media

“Advertisers are continually searching for new and innovative ways to speak to their markets, ways that cut through the clutter and deliver a powerful, focused, cost-effective message,” says Andrew Franks. It was while drinking coffee on holiday in New York City that Franks hit upon just such an innovative new brand communication tool – a tag attached to the handle of a coffee cup.
“Coffee is the second largest commodity in the world – people drink over 1,6 billion cups of coffee every day. When they visit coffee shops they are in a relaxed environment and receptive to interesting messages. The idea I had was to create holistic campaigns that give brands targeted exposure, provide consumers with relevant and interesting messages and uplift the coffee
environment,” says Franks of the vision behind Tag 8 Media.

Developing strategic partnerships

With over a decade’s experience working in the advertising industry, Franks has a knack for creating tactical ambient media that allows a brand to interact personally with a clearly defined market. The key to Tag 8’s success is to create strategic partnerships between like-minded brands and coffee partners. “The trick is to partner the right brands with the sought-after coffee drinking market, targeting consumers in their leisure time when they have time to absorb a message. Advertising is restricted to one message per cup and there is a high level of accuracy and penetration in blue-chip shopping centres across a national network,” says Franks. With these unique advantages and Tag 8’s fresh innovative approach, it’s little wonder that brands like Levi Jeans, Mini Cooper, X-Box, Adidas, Virgin Active, Sony Ericsson and Nestlé Gold Chocolate have grabbed the opportunity to be involved. The deal is equally attractive to coffee partners who get a commission and are able to offer their customers an enhanced coffee environment. Partners have included the likes of Seattle Coffee Co, Mugg & Bean, Vida e Caffè and a large network of independent cafés.

Diversifying the offering

When it started, the company offered branded coffee cup tags and sleeves. Today, Tag 8 has diversified its offering into a host of innovative and alternative media channels, including coffee cup advertising, table top advertising, wi-fi, sampling and activations.
One of Tag 8’s latest projects combines all three in a holistic alternative media campaign for Lufthansa German Airlines. Launched across 35 Seattle coffee stores nationwide it uses Tag 8 table-tops, coffee cup advertising and wi-fi to encourage customers to register online and qualify for a discounted Lufthansa airline ticket. “We’ve used a patented tablewrap, a first for the South African market,” says Franks of the unique material he’s sourced from a UK supplier. “It’s a transparent filmique that encapsulates the entire table surface and allows consumer advertising to be securely displayed on tabletops – it is tamper resistant, heat resistant and FDA approved which means it can be in direct contact with food,” he adds. The Lufthansa campaign is a prime example of how effective coffee cup advertising can be. “The campaign ran from 15 September to 15 December with three phases of staggered discount redemption. Lufthansa’s tabletop message, together with marketing on Seattle coffee sleeves and tags, offered an incredibly unique opportunity for it to reach prospective travellers at a time when they are open and receptive to marketing messages,”
explains Franks.

Ideas driven

He’s constantly looking for new ways to bring clients innovative, effective alternative media campaigns. So it helps that he’s an “ideas guy”. But he’s quick to point out that Tag 8’s ideas don’t come in a box, out of a mould or on a production line.
“It’s about looking at the message that the brand wants to communicate and then providing the right campaign and the right platform to reach a highly targeted audience at the right time,” he says. Such innovation, together with Franks’ energy and first-mover advantage, look set to secure Tag 8 the leading position in what is one of the fastest growing outdoor advertising segments.

Company: Tag 8 Media
Player: Andrew Franks
Est: 2006
Contact +27 21 412 29 32

Juliet Pitman is a features writer at Entrepreneur Magazine.


25 Of The Most Successful Business Ideas In South Africa

Find out who’s making waves in numerous industries and how they managed to differentiate themselves in local and international industries.

Nicole Crampton



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“Disruption is all about risk-taking, trusting your intuition, and rejecting the way things are supposed to be. Disruption goes way beyond advertising, it forces you to think about where you want your brand to go and how to get there,” says Richard Branson.

South Africa has its fair share of innovative and disruptive businesses taking both local and international industries by storm. From cutting edge space technology to reimagined logistics, and innovative business models, here are 25 of the most successful business ideas in South Africa:

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Colin Timmis Says ‘Position Yourself For Success By Starting With The Numbers’

People pay first who they feel pressure from, so people will pay you when they feel pressure from you.






Entrepreneur Colin Timmis founded South Africa’s first cloud accounting practice in 2011, Real Time Accounting. Then, a few years after being appointed as South Africa’s first Xero partner Colin became Xero Country Manager South Africa. Xero is the emerging global leader of online accounting software that connects small businesses to their advisors and other services.

Related: Pat Pillai On How He’s Helped Over 5000 Entrepreneurs Using 3 Key Steps

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Two 20 Year Olds Reshape Entrepreneur Landscape With New Social Investment Platform

The Merge vision is to become the ‘go to’, digital meeting place for entrepreneurs and investors, and to truly make a difference in the world.

Merge Connect




Vital Stats

It’s no secret that finding the right investor for your venture is a challenge that most entrepreneurs face. The current process of finding investment is one that is outdated, and limits entrepreneurs due to a lack of time, and network that is needed to find the right investor. But, this doesn’t have to be the case in today’s digital society, says Zander Matthee and Brandon Bate, co-founders of Merge.

“By making the Internet the middleman, we are able to connect with each other much simpler and faster than before” was Zander’s response. “We have taken advantage of this, and have created a digital meeting place for entrepreneurs and investors” added Brandon.

Merge is a social platform that connects entrepreneurs and investors. It aims to simplify, refine and accelerate the process of finding investment for entrepreneurs, and the process of finding investment opportunities for investors. From idea to developed, the platform allows entrepreneurs to present a brief outline of their venture to a network of all investor types. While doing this, entrepreneurs are able to browse through, and connect with investor profiles that suit their requirements.

Related: 8 Codes Of Success That Helped Priven Reddy of Kagiso Interactive Media Achieve A Networth Of Over R4 Billion

From Private Investors to Venture Capital, and everything in between, Merge allows all investor types to join. Investors have the opportunity to personalise their feed to suit their investment preferences, and will be able to connect with innovative businesses – that are looking for investment – at their fingertips. Only once there is a mutual interest in each other, are users able to enter a secure private chat where they can discuss further and share documents under the protection of a digital NDA.

The two boys became good friends during their time in high school at St Stithians Boys College. However, it was only in their last year, 2016, that they decided to pursue their dreams and create the platform. They didn’t know how to code, so rather ironically, they needed some form of investment to get the platform off the ground.


“We knew we had a mountain to climb, but we believed in our vision and that we were really trying to make a difference, and if we could get others to see that, they would be onboard.” said Zander.

Related: Lessons From The Rich And Famous: Manage Your Money Like Oprah To Avoid Going Into Debt Like Nicholas Cage

Chris Peters is one of these individuals that bought into their vision, and became Merge’s first investor. As a successful entrepreneur and part time investor , Chris saw how much value the platform could bring to all entrepreneurs and investors alike. His marketing and strategic background gave him insight into how Merge could play a vital role in a lucrative space, Brand involvement.

“Entrepreneurship and SME development are two key factors that drive economic growth in developing countries like South Africa. That is why brands are currently getting involved, and looking to support entrepreneurs through various means. We have built a platform that allows these brands to successfully market, and execute on the programmes they have created to assist entrepreneurs.” said Chris

Merge was created to assist all entrepreneurs and investors in finding exactly what they are looking for, regardless of age, race, sex, financial position or social status. That is why anybody can sign-up as an entrepreneur. As long as you are determined and willing to work for your dreams. For too long has the investor space been seen as an “elite club for the select few”, and Merge is here to change that. Whether you’ve gotten your bonus at the end of the year and looking for new investment opportunities, or are an active investor, you can sign-up. Whether you’re currently working, or a retired industry leader, you can join as a mentor.

Their vision is to become the ‘go to’, digital meeting place for entrepreneurs and investors, and to truly make a difference in the world.

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