CCI: Media Buying Agency for Media Placements in Respective Media Platforms

Centre for Communication Impact (CCI)
Please note: this opportunity closing date has passed and may not be available any more.
Opportunity closing date: 
Thursday, 10 December, 2020
Opportunity type: 
Call for proposals

A project to appoint an established Media Buying Agency for Media Placements in Respective Media Platforms for Mass Media Campaign in South Africa.
With support from Vital Strategies, Centre for Communication Impact (CCI) is working with other stakeholder groups on a population level communication campaign on the problems of an unhealthy diet in South Africa. Fundamentally, this mass media campaign set to demand a better appreciation of the health promotion levy (HPL) as the communication campaign aims to make the link between unhealthy food and the negative impacts on health.
CCI seeks to appoint an agency to provide media planning, buying and placement services for a national media campaign to be launched in January/February 2021. The program partners are gearing up to run a campaign ahead of the February 2021 budget announcement to emphasize the importance of the levy and demand that the National Treasury to increase it.
With this context, an experienced agency is required to develop and execute an integrated media strategy which includes, media research and analysis, media buying strategy, platform selection etc. Included in the above should also be media placement proposed costings and production timelines based on the proposed media schedules.
The service provider must demonstrate media value and savings as well as ensure that adverts appear on the booked channels as per approved media schedule and provision of the required proof thereof. The service provider will also be expected to do pre- and post-campaign performance monitoring and reporting. Importantly, the media planning of the campaign must underscore and highlight the campaign’s overall objectives regarding health harms of high content of sugar, fat and salt in packaged foods and illustrates the need for clear labels that reveal exactly what’s in our food.


The health issue:
In most countries around the world, obesity rates have risen rapidly over the past 40 years. In 2015, more than 2.2 billion people or one-third of the world’s population were overweight or obese. The prevalence of obesity is increasing, especially among children and in low- and middle-income countries. In Sub-Saharan Africa, obesity rates are the highest, and the upsurge continues in South Africa. Almost 70% of women, 39% of men, and one in four girls and one in five boys between the ages of 2 and 14 years are either overweight or obese in South Africa. Furthermore, rates of diabetes are also rising; obesity-related diseases account for 43% of deaths, and diabetes ranks as the second biggest killer.

There is a range of underlying causes for the increasing overweight and obesity levels, including changes in diet. Across the world, rising levels of sugary beverage consumption are a primary source of added sugars in diets for many countries, including South Africa. Sugary beverages are liquids that contain added sweeteners, such as sucrose, high-fructose corn syrup, or fruit-juice concentrates, and examples include soft drinks, fruit drinks and energy drinks.

Over the past several decades, with the increase in the presence sugary beverage corporations in South Africa, there has been growth in sales and consumption of sugary beverages which shows a close parallel with rising obesity rates. Between 1999 and 2012, consumption of sugary beverages increased by almost 70%. In 2010, South Africans were among the world’s top 10 consumers of sugary drinks.

South African policy context:

To tackle obesity and non-communicable diseases (NCDs), such as diabetes, hypertension, etc.; many countries have enacted “health taxes” taxes imposed on products that have a negative impact on health on products like fossil fuels, sugary beverages, alcohol and tobacco. Such taxation can not only generate revenue for governments, but it can also discourage the use and consumption of unhealthy products thereby reducing health consequences, including obesity and NCD rates and related deaths.
In South Africa, some strategies, policies, and regulations exist to try and address the health issue.

To reduce obesity by 10% by 2020, the Department of Health (DoH) adopted a National Strategy for the Prevention and Reduction of Obesity (2015-2020). Goal 2 of the strategy aims to “create an enabling environment that supports the availability and accessibility to healthy food choices in various settings” and proposes fiscal measures like sugary drinks taxes as ideal best-buys for curbing consumption of sugary beverages and preventing obesity NCDs. There is growing evidence of the effectiveness of such taxes in reducing sugary beverage consumption. For instance, two years after Mexico introduced a “soda” tax of 10%, there was a reduction in sugary beverage sales and an increase in the sale of bottled water.
In 2016, the South African government announced proposals for a tax on sugary beverages, and in November 2017, the National Assembly passed a bill to make the country the first in Africa to implement such an intervention. Officially known as the Health Promotion Levy (HPL), the tax came into effect in April 2018 and was applied to non-alcoholic drinks with added sugar or flavoring, syrups, and other concentrates, cocoa powder, and malt extract, and non-alcoholic beer, at a rate of 11%. The levy has thus far collected over R3 billion in revenue since its implementation. The Food Policy Program has since continued to lead advocacy efforts to double the tax to 20% an amount recommended by the World Health Organization and proven to significantly reduce consumption.
The program has used mass media campaigns to build public support for the tax and persuade policymakers to implement it. Between 2016 to 2018, partners rolled out a mass media campaign to increase knowledge about the harms of sugary beverages and build political and public support for the proposed tax. Now, program partners are gearing up to run a campaign ahead of the February 2021 budget announcement to emphasize the importance of the levy and demand that the National Treasury to increase it. Assets developed for TV, print, and out-of-home adverts that were used in previous campaigns are being repurposed and updated for the upcoming HPL upcoming campaign.
Campaign Objectives

  • Increase public understanding that the high amounts of salt, fat and sugar in unhealthy ultra-processed packaged food they eat regularly can lead to obesity and other NCDs
  • Increase public understanding that a major reason for them being unable make healthier food choices is because packaged food products don’t carry clear, warning labels.  With an emphasis on  the importance of a strong Health Promotion Levy (HPL) as a solution for reducing sugary beverage consumption and preventing NCDs.
  • Build public support for clear warning labels ,through highlighting the urgent need to protect and strengthen the HPL especially in light of the COVID-19 pandemic

Campaign Target Audience

Primary audience (support and ensure increase in HPL as a way to prevent NCDs):

  • Individuals in positions of influence i.e. parliamentarians, national treasury, other policymakers in the health and education ministries.
  • Thought leaders in civil society as well as food distributors (main actors along the value chain).

Secondary (Re-engage on the importance of the tax in addressing NCDs)

  • General public adults aged 18-55 years, in LSM segment 3-8, most of whom are parents or caregivers, from low-middle socio-economic groups who purchase processed unhealthy food for themselves and on behalf of children aged 16 years and below.

Additional Information
Reading material

About Centre for Communication Impact (CCI)

Centre for Communication Impact (CCI), formerly known as Johns Hopkins Health and Education in South Africa (JHHESA) is a South African non-governmental organization that has been in existence since 2004, designing and implementing evidence-based strategic communication programs to drive social and behavior change. CCI designs, implements and evaluates impactful communication campaigns that seek to inform and educate the public about issues such as HIV, gender-based violence and non-communicable diseases as well as to promote the demand and uptake of different health and social services among South Africans.
All materials produced become the property of CCI, aligned to agreements with supporting partners.


With leadership from Vital Strategies, the program has used mass media campaigns to build public support for the tax and persuade policymakers to implement it. Between 2016 to 2018, partners rolled out a mass media campaign to increase knowledge about the harms of sugary beverages and build political and public support for the proposed tax. Now, program partners are gearing up to run the next phase of the campaign ahead of the February 2021 budget announcement to emphasize the importance of the levy and demand that the National Treasury to increase it. Coupled with this, it is noted that assets developed for TV, print, and out-of-home adverts which were used in previous campaigns are being repurposed and updated for the upcoming HPL campaign.
With this context , CCI requires an agency with media planning expertise to place the campaign on channels that provide the best opportunity to reach and influence a large proportion of the target audience. Furthermore, the bidder will be expected to identify  the key opportunities to reach policy makers through news and current affairs programming to supplement the Media planning, buying and placement for TV commercial and other campaign executions including but not limited to social media /digital and radio adverts.
The specific objectives that relate to media planning are to:

  • Reach a large proportion (60%) of the primary and secondary target populations
  • Achieve a good frequency for the ads (a level of 4)

The successful bidder will be expected to do the following:

  • Study the creative material results report to guide the best strategic media placement and campaign executions.
  • Ensure all materials have been delivered to stations, publications and posted online by material deadline to ensure timeous execution.
  • Propose and produce the media buying plan to ensure seamless collaboration to meet campaign deliverables.
  • Contracting as per CCI procurement policies and procedures (i.e. ensuring no conflict of interest, negotiating usage fees). Obtain approvals and address any legal issues (there will be a separate legal review).
  • Demonstrate their ability in development and execution of media strategies in order to meet campaign requirements.
  • Indicate the approach you would follow in media planning, buying and placement.
  • Develop pre and post campaign performance monitoring and reporting.
  • Demonstrate the availability of appropriate skills and resources that will manage and deliver on campaign’s Media planning, buying and placement requirements as specified in Part 2 above.
  • Reporting and Communication – The service provider will create weekly summarized reports and detailed monthly reports ( as well as end of project report ) for CCI, documenting the current and previous month’s efforts and upcoming initiatives and include analytics data for all digital media initiatives. Maintain weekly communications and bi-monthly (every 2 weeks) status meetings with CCI  and partners to ensure that needs are being met and identify additional marketing opportunities for CCI.
  • Coordinate with the PR agency to ensure seamless collaboration to meet campaign deliverables.

Note: The exact deliverables for the project will be outlined in a detailed brief to the bidder


The first stage in the campaign development process is the appointment of a suitably qualified agency to work closely with CCI and its partners, to do media planning, buying and placement. Our procurement processes require us to invite a minimum of three agencies to respond to this invitation to demonstrate how their credentials and experience can support the challenge ahead.
Your submission should include:

  1. A statement of why your agency would be a suitable partner for CCI with a proposed budget plan (one page).
  2. Description of previous placement work that is relevant to the health communication task required by CCI. Links should be provided to view examples online. (no more than 5 pages).
  3. Experience working with similar not-for-profit clients and your approach to this type of work (no more than two pages).
  4. Experience of two examples of delivering media planning/buying strategies for large scale campaigns from strategy development, right to a post-campaign performance monitoring report. (no more than two pages).
  5. Experience of the proposed team that would be assigned to CCI work. Please provide detailed organizational overview of the following key personnel, to include Media Strategist , Social Media campaign team, Buyer and planner. This should include a full organogram. Are all these personnel employed on a full time basis?  If not, provide details. (no more than two pages).
  6. Contact details for at least 3 referees (one page).

Note: Please structure your submission addressing the points numbered 1 to 6 as above.


The financial proposal should be submitted in a separate email, with the documents as stated in points below.
Please complete and submit CCI A2: Declaration of interest and restrictions at - along with technical proposal. If you are unable to download it for whatever reason, please write to to request a copy.


The suitable agency will be appointed through a process involving a review and rating of credentials and cost schedules. The successful agency will be selected based on the professional merit, ability to deliver against project goals at the highest quality and within the scheduled time, and value for money.
Submissions will be reviewed and rated based on the extent to which agencies demonstrate:

  • An understanding of the challenge for CCI and obesity prevention in South Africa
  • The extent to which their experience and capability complement the task
  • Appropriate costs and fees

The contract is expected to run up to 30 March 2021, commencing on the date of signing the contract. The successful bidder should be able to start from 10thDecember 2020 with a plan to place content in agreed platforms by end of January 2021.


Agencies will be evaluated based on their ability to adhere to the project timelines, their track record of producing similar social or public health campaigns, the experience and capability of the agency, and value for money.
Phase 1: Technical Evaluation

The evaluation of the technical part of the proposal will be on the basis of the candidate’s responsiveness to the application of the evaluation criteria and points system as indicated below. Each responsive proposal will be given a technical score.

Criteria Points Allocated
Originality & creativity of proposal (Assessed on other work done in the past) 40
Portfolio of work 35
Applauds & recognition 5
Experience working in social / public health campaigns                20
Total           100

Bidders will receive further consideration if they score at least 60% minimum points out of the 100 points on technical criteria as listed above as well as at least 50% in each criteria.
Phase 2: Pricing and B-BBEE Evaluation
Should the proposal be successful in the Technical Evaluation, the proposal will then be subject to evaluation based on pricing and B-BBEE criteria. The ceiling for this scope of work is R4,800,000. CCI is requesting bidders to demonstrate what this amount can buy the project in terms of content placement. CCI’s financial evaluation will focus on identifying the agency that gives the best value for the stated amount.
Please note that our B-BBEE specifications include a diverse team with good female and black representation. Not just diverse management but also diversity within the team that will directly work on the account as well.
The following weighting of criteria will be used for the evaluation of the proposals:
Value for Money                                                                                   90 points
B-BBEE Points*                                                                                   10 points

*Level 1 & 2 =10 points; Level 3 & 4 = 5 points; Above Level 4 & Non-compliant = 0
Phase 3: Location
Only suppliers who are physically based in South Africa will be considered in the bidding process.
NOTE: Please include copies of company registration documents, tax clearance certificate, bank account confirmation and B-BBEEE certificate.

The written tender application should focus on the following aspects to qualify and be considered:

  • Originality & creativity of proposal:
    • Use of visuals in presenting the work
    • Shows understanding of what the Food Policy Project (FPP) is about
    • Shows an understanding of who FPP’s target market is
  • Portfolio of evidence:
    • Evidence of past work (emphasizing similar work)
    • Current and past clientele
  • Category, market segment or product experience:
    • Have prior experience working with client in the health advocacy sector will be an advantage
    • Level of experience of staff who will work on the FPP account including their CVs

To enable CCI to evaluate the entity on the above criteria, please ensure that suitable documentation is attached with your submission.


In terms of good corporate governance, a supplier should not be appointed where there is an existing real or perceived conflict of interest. CCI will not entertain proposals from agencies that currently provide services to, received support from, or been affiliated with the tobacco or processed food, alcohol and sugary beverage industry or its agents or associates within the past two (2) years.
No Beverage and Processed Food Industry Relationships 

The successful agency should be able to guarantee that it does not knowingly represent or receive payment or other support from any beverage and processed food industry manufacturer or wholesaler, or any parent, affiliate or subsidiary of a beverage and processed food product manufacturer or wholesaler, or any person, interest group, advocacy organization, law firm, advertising agency, or other business or organization that represents the interests of the beverage and processed food industry, has not done so in the past two years, and will not enter into any such relationship during the grant period or for one year thereafter.


Please submit completed proposals to Pinky Makhaye ( copying Nyiko Langa at by 17:00 on or before Thursday, 10 December 2020
Queries and requests for additional information should be directed to Pinky Makhaye (
Please note: Questions and Answers will be shared with all agencies in the pitch process (to ensure that no one agency is unfairly advantaged)
NB: CCI will only communicate with shortlisted bidders and should you not hear from us within one month after the closing date, consider your applications as unsuccessful.

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