Lobola is no laughing matter… But not making sense can be

By: King Price

The new King Price TV ad tells the story of a young man with an odd accent who botches up his lobola payment by offering 50 kettles rather than 50 cattle… Which obviously doesn’t make sense to his intended or her father.

It’s the second in a series of ads themed ‘When others don’t make sense, we do’, which talks to the fact that they’re the only insurer that decreases your car’s premium in line with the car’s decreasing value. It just makes sense to pay less every month to insure something that’s worth less every month. In just 6 years, they’ve saved South Africans over R100 million in decreasing premiums, and that makes sense in any accent.

The first ad in the series had millions of South Africans laughing at a farmer getting sexy with his tractor after some sensible advice from the local agony auntie was lost in translation. The ad went viral, clocking over 1 million views within 24 hours of it first being posted on an internal King Price Whatsapp group. It was awarded, and named the ‘ad of the week’ by Maggs on Media, among other accolades.

With the first ad, as with the second, King Price also played with the fact that while they don’t take themselves too seriously, they take what they do very seriously.

King Price’s GM for marketing Natalie Bisset says that the insurer is a proudly South African brand with a commitment to taking the grudge out of the insurance-buying decision. ‘We talk to our clients as if they’re special friends, so we’re casual, down to earth and sometimes a little cheeky, but always humble and respectful. Our brand tonality is humourous… If there’s an opportunity to make our country laugh, we’ll take it.’

The insurer’s lobola ad was conceptualised and created by Freckle – the same team responsible for the tractor ad. ‘We’ve worked extensively, and very successfully, with Freckle’s Bennie Fourie and Bouwer Bosch,’ says Bisset. ‘In fact our 2016 Movember campaign, starring Peter de Villiers and his fabulous mo’, still gets YouTube views! It’s a wonderful example of our unique South African humour, and it’ll be due to Fourie and Bosch’s ability to respectfully capture South Africa and its cultural idiosyncracies that our new campaign will still be making South Africans chuckle 2, and perhaps even 10, years from now.’

Bosch says that the lobola ad came about in Dullstroom at King Price’s Lekkerland Carnival, where he, Fourie, and Stephan Bredell, who works on innovation and culture for King Price, were throwing around concepts to follow up the tractor ad. ‘Stephan offered coffee, saying he was going to put the kettle on, and that sparked some word play. We also wanted to create something culturally diverse and proudly South African so we played with the concept of lobola… And here we are!’

Fourie wrote the script and directed the shoot, while Bosch is assistant director and editor. Merichen Wessels, who was an integral part of the tractor ad team, is creative director. Eduan Kitching, who shot Fourie and Bosch’s feature film ‘Vuil wasgoed’ directed the photography. SAMA-nominated producer and musician Peach van Pletzen, also of tractor ad fame, is responsible for the music and the Maskandi-type African-folk guitar track was played by jazz student Janu Botes.