The inaugural Most Admired Marketing/Media Manager of the Year went to the Heineken Group's senior media manager, Avtaar Mohanlall.
The award winners were announced last night at a packed Wanderers in Johannesburg, where the media industry gathered in force to celebrate their own for the first time since 2019.
Michelle Randell Sharnock, marketing and strategy director, heed, who was also named the Media Owner Rising Star says her passion for the industry is unwavering since the day she entered it. "And this is purely because of the people I get to work with every single day. I am incredibly proud, but most importantly, most proud for my team for winning best digital agency and best media owner overall,”
She says winning the best media owner overall is a sign they are doing something right. “We are pushing boundaries; we are trying to reshape what media sales are all about.”
Today, she adds, the days of selling a placement or a platform are over. “We now have to be able to sell a solution and media strategy, and understand what clients need before they understand it and then deliver a solution that is meaningful that delivers results.
“To achieve this the onus is on agencies, clients and media owners to be up to date with what is happening in their environment and through empirical evidence and modern marketing principles have a clear understanding of what drives brand growth.”
On being named Agency owner of the year, Mlue Maguba, account director, Vodacom, Carat Johannesburg, says, “We as Carat, and dentsu as a whole, really pride ourselves on the work that we do through the collaboration of our different teams in Cape Town and Johannesburg. Everyone makes it come together.
“This award means that everything we are doing on a daily basis is showing and is being appreciated not only by our company, but by the industry and that we are setting a great example for others, and are a place that can be a destination for others in their careers.”
The event also honoured Sandra Gordan for her contribution to the Awards over the year who says she is thrilled that Arena Holdings has raised the awards again, after the last one was held in 2019. “We are expecting a lot of changes, and while we have seen some of the changes this evening, wait till next year. It will be a changed environment that reflects the industry.
She also says she is a great believer in Fourth Estate and the role of media. “If it was not for you guys [the media industry] spending money and investing in the advertising there would not be a media industry in this country. Salute.”