Louise Marsland’s (@Louise_Marsland) pick of new product, packaging and design launches.

Graffiti gives forecourt screen advertising a go; Amarula has a full harvest for Spring; the bygone era of the ‘gentleman’s club’ revitalised by the new McCullagh & Bothwell designs; and Huggies gets a dose of reality.

New digital media network for forecourt stores

In store digital screen

Garage forecourts were among the first ‘retail spaces’ in South Africa to be targeted for retail screen advertising, with limited success over the years. But as the technology has improved, so has the application, and Graffiti Digital has now launched digital advertising screens in store at garage forecourt shops around the country to feature specials and other news.

Graffiti has partnered with UK-based AMScreen International and the screens operate using 3G technology which means content can be instantly updated to feature specials particular to a store or region or even time of day.

Advertisers that have come on board include Nu-Metro, Michelin, Hyundai and Halls.

Graffiti reports that research conducted on the screens to date has shown significant brand retention statistics with customers not only remembering the products featured, but the brand names too. Stores are also reporting increased product sales of products featured on the screens, they say.

Craig Wight, who heads up Graffiti Digital explains their strategy: “The garage forecourt retail solution in South Africa has expanded significantly in recent years, with multiple offerings of fresh produce, speciality coffee, hot food and all the other essential convenience store requirements. As a result, footfall in these environments has increased over 50% over the last four years with even more development still in the pipeline. This makes this an extremely exciting environment in which to launch a dynamic digital media network.”

The first 120 screens have gone up in Caltex Freshstop shops. Total Bonjour and Shell Select stores are next in line.

Amarula harvest indulgence

Amarula harvest campaign generic poster

A multi-million rand, through-the-line campaign with major in store elements, is being launched for Spring to entrench Amarula as “an affordable indulgence”. The theme is the harvest of the marula fruit and the campaign to promote the brand will run from October to end-November.

The current campaign is also being used to introduce the new 200ml bottle via wholesale and on-consumption channels.

The marula fruit is indigenous to sub-Saharan Africa and grows in the wild where it is collected by communities outside of Phalaborwa and after being pulped, vinified and distilled, it is aged for two years in wood before the cream is added.

The in store retail and wholesale campaign element is supported by radio and digital advertising and is being extensively merchandised among participating retailers as premium prizes are on offer for consumers.

The brand is presented as unique, special and as a genuine African Original,” according to South African marketing manager, Christelle Bester. “Merchandising amplifies this by strongly featuring visuals of the fruit, the elephants that love marulas, as well as Alek Wek, the African-born supermodel who is the face of the brand.”

McCullagh & Bothwell’s designer legacy

M&B store 2

Johannesburg’s Hyde Park shopping centre is certainly positioning itself as one of the most sought-after luxury shopping destinations in South Africa if the slew of new luxury stores and product brands and upgrades are anything to go by.

The exclusive McCullagh & Bothwell menswear outlet is the latest store to “refresh” its look in its flagship store for Spring – while drawing on its colourful past.

It was founded in 1896 and brings this history to life with a special ‘heritage wall’ in the revamped store.

The new retail space also incorporates contemporary store design and customers are now greeted by tall, curved glass shop fronts, polished stainless steel detailing and new retail lighting concepts. The styling is “traditional gentleman’s club”.

Some of the world’s finest finishes have been utilised here to create a “debonair space”:“pure wool Philip Jeffries tweed wallpapers imported from the US adorn the walls, while the floors are embellished with solid oak chevron pattern flooring from the UK. Other rich, warm and masculine finishes such as walnut, polished black granite and dark thick pile carpets complete the opulent look”.

“Over the past few years, we have been mindful to revamp our Hyde Park store to launch the new era of McCullagh & Bothwell. But while we wanted to reflect this new chapter by contemporising the store and bringing it up to date with the latest retail trends, we also had to ensure that the space remained strongly linked to the brand’s deep-rooted tradition and heritage,” said Mickey Walker, a McCullagh & Bothwell director.

Branded reality

To promote Huggies My First Nappy – with built in moisture alert – the nappy brand has come on board as a sponsor of the new reality show on KykNet which targets pregnant women.

Called ‘Nege Maande’, the 12-episode series follows nine various and diverse moms-to-be over their second and third trimesters, documenting their experiences and providing viewers with insight into the different experiences and expectations of expectant moms during this incredible time.

Interactive content and pregnancy tips online support the TV shows.

My First Nappy is a size 0 made specifically for newborns and has a unique umbilical cord cut-out for additional protection, as well as a “wetness indicator” to alert new moms as to when it is time to change baby.

It’s Huggies which is also currently also trialing its ‘TweetPee’ app.

in Brazil with a cute device attached to baby’s nappy which tweets the parents when higher levels of humidity are detected – meaning baby has made a wee.

I think a poo panic button would be more useful.
Louise MarslandShelf Life by Louise Marsland is a weekly column on MarkLives. Tweet new product, packaging and design launches to @louise_marsland or email her at louise.marsland at

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Louise Marsland has written about the FMCG, media, marketing and advertising industry for 18 years of her 25 year media career as a former Editor of magazines AdVantageMarketing Mix and Progressive Retailing; as well as websites and FMCGFilesShe currently edits the weekly Wednesday Media & Marketing Page for The New Age newspaper; and is the co-founder and Publishing Editor of SA’s newly launched industry trendwatching portal, TREND. at, in partnership with

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