This discussion is about FlashCast Kenya - Giving Small Businesses A Voice Via Smart Vehicles.
Hi Jeremy -
Thanks for sharing FlashCast. Seems like a really exciting idea and a great way for NGOs and social entreprises to access a more affordable advertising channel.
That said, I'm really curious about how you maintain a that focus on the social sector. Inevitably, you're going to get bigger firms who are interested in using FlashCast to bring more visibility to their goods/services. They'll pay you all more handsomely for access to that network and could crowd out your lower-paying customers. Will you turn down the extra cash? If so, how might you prevent a competitor from signing a more lucrative agreement with MOA or KBS to display their private sector ads instead?
As you transition this competition entry to a changeshop on Changemakers, it'd be wonderful if you could speak to that.
Keep up the fantastic work, and look forward to reading more.
Thanks for your comment!
You bring up the classic quandary of social enterprise -- how can a company with financially interested stakeholders remain true to social objectives. Lucky for us, our model enables it to happen naturally.
There is an absolutely enormous market of micro to small sized enterprises in Kenya, not to mention wider EAC, continental Africa, Southeast Asia, and Latin America, with entirely underserved communication needs. To date, most of these companies haven't been able to entertain the thought of targeted, relevant messaging, but our technology makes it possible. It's true that the need is just as strong among the larger corporates, the companies that no one could consider service to as 'socially motivated'. But vying for marketing budget at these levels, there's significant competition.
FlashCast sees the potential where others to date have not -- we're investing in building the market bottom up, and believe that there are real financial incentives when designing a product for a market that no one else is serving.
Of course, the other half of the answer is that FlashCast's mission is completely dependent on the relationship we build with passengers. If you're on one of our vehicles and you look at our display as a source of trustworthy, compelling, information and interactivity, the efficacy of our messages is multiplied. In pursuit of this, is the rest of the content that FlashCast provides -- local news, public service announcements, quizzes, and interactive opportunities that we can't even talk about yet. The social mission of providing information to the public, when and where it's most useful doesn't need to be defended, and this will remain core to our business indefinitely.
The FlashCast team (Jeremy Gordon & Caine Wanjau)