Kamageo & Mauritius part company
Just 6 months into their new partnership, MTPA and Kamageo have confirmed that they will not be working together beyond April 2020.
MTPA’s previous UK agency - Hills Balfour - was in place for over 9 years, gaining a wealth of experience in the process, but as Tim Henshall, Kamageo’s Chief Executive openly admits, “We simply weren’t able to achieve the same level in a much shorter time which proved crucial”.
Henshall added that, “We were honoured to have been chosen to work on such a prestigious account. It’s an incredible destination, but MTPA needs something different to what we offer. We joined at a time when their tourism numbers were on a slide, which we have helped to arrest. We wish them every success for the future”.
Highlights in the period have included a busy WTM (despite the show itself having a poor performance); numerous successful media trips; a return to UK consumer travel shows (Destinations and the National Wedding Show); recruiting ‘Made in Chelsea’ to film episodes on the island, a nationwide romantic proposals radio promotion, fifteen joint marketing campaigns and the launch of the new “Honey & The Moon” concept to the trade.
Henshall has emphasised that Kamageo will be more than willing to provide essential guidance and advice to their successors, whilst they plan to refocus back on mainland Africa where they currently work with Zambia, Uganda, Malawi, Eswatini, The Gambia, Senegal and Sierra Leone.
RECOMMENDATIONS GOING FORWARD
The client team (MTPA) needs to be 100% happy with their appointed agency and get fully behind them as soon as possible. Negative and dismissive comments made at first meetings can be hugely damaging to the morale and enthusiasm of the agency's staff.
Any proposed activities should be discussed upon appointment, but having received a fuller briefing and learning more of the market place, the agency should be able to provide revised recommendations and budget breakdowns.
As well as explaining procedures and reporting, we feel that a comprehensive briefing session is essential :
Product : Any new agency is unlikely to have a full product knowledge of Mauritius and sessions should be arranged to take all relevant staff through product.
Marketing campaigns : It would be beneficial to take the agency through past marketing activities - highlighting successes and failures alike. Knowing the kind of activities MTPA is and isn’t keen on would be good to know.
Trade Relations : Using the new agency’s own trade database, a steer should be given regarding existing relationships. For example, are there tour operators whose JMA proposals should be accepted purely on the basis of their volumes, rather than necessarily judges against the proposals themselves. Are there ‘preferred’ partners to go to at times?
It is important for the out-going agency provides a handover to the new agency. Any professional company should be willing to do this, out of respect for their industry colleagues. Again, this should highlight past activities and relationships.
All agencies based in a territory must meet on a regular basis (quarterly?) to exchange news on developments. Agencies should be open to supplying partner agencies with non-sensitive plans and activities.
EXTENDED INDUCTION & FAM TRIPS
The agency's familiarisation / educational trip was should see key staff on the account should spend 10-14 days on the island within 3 months of starting on the account.
ISLAND BASED STAFF
An agency employee (part or full time) based on the island, would be highly beneficial. Coordinating and accompanying media and fam trips; engaging with the private sector to source news, as well as providing status updates to both MTPA and where appropriate, the private sector.
MONTHLY SKYPE / WEEKLY CALL
A regular series of update meetings should be diarised and adherence to, whenever possible. For the weekly call, an updated status sheet would be distributed ahead of time.
Examples of the kind of market information required would be helpful, to ensure the agency sources appropriate material. In our experience the agency responsible for a particular discipline provides data on that same discipline. For example, competitive advertising creative and spend would normally be supplied by the ad agency to both MTPA and other agencies.
Each report takes around 3-4 working days to compile, which clearly cuts deeply into the time available for other projects. Whilst the reports are vital, we recommend the development of an online platform, which allows for status to be updated as it happens, with MTPA able to access 24/7. This would then allow a smaller executive summary to be produced at month end. Provide the new agency with actual examples of previous monthly reports to see style and content.
IMAGERY & TEXT
Within the supplied image library, there should be approval given for “key” images to use in marketing materials. This will significantly impact on the speed of approval on creative work. We also suggest that certain phrases which do not have MTPA approval are highlighted at the briefing (eg discount, save, from price, dream, paradise, fantasy, amazing, gorgeous etc) to avoid confusion.going forward.