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Entertainment of Tuesday, 20 October 2020

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

We'll strategise and get same results – Advertising agency on ‘celebrity betting ads’ ban

Although celebrities wield the power to market a brand and achieve targeted results, some advertising companies appear unfazed by the Gaming Commission’s newly-introduced guidelines that ban them from using celebrities to advertise betting.

Mimi Andani-Michaels, a musician who also works with NMJ Ghana, an agency known to have recently contracted many celebrities to advertise a betting company says her firm will devise a strategy in the face of the ban.

“I don’t think agencies have any problem. As for agencies, they’ll always strategise and give you marketing strategies that will work and give you similar results as using the celebrities,” she said on GhanaWeb TV’s entertainment review show ‘Bloggers’ Forum’.

“For agencies, no matter what, there is always a solution because before the celebrities were used, we were using different strategies. There are so many ways we can go around it,” she reiterated.

Asked how her outfit would engage celebrities who had already been paid for advertisement and may have fulfilled parts of their obligations, Mimi said, “You can’t discuss what you’ve contracted somebody to do; similarly, the person cannot discuss. So, I can’t talk about it.”

She however expressed concerns on the guidelines as she argued that the commission was being unfair to celebrities. She told show host Abrantepa that her interest was to “use the creative [persons] because I’m one of them and I know how I suffered when I was in the industry fully. I know how much the revenue streams are very limited and slim.”

“First, it was FDA and now it’s Gaming Commission and I think it’s a big blow. We are in COVID-19 season, there are no jobs, events are not even organized, people are doing semi-body contact event, it’s not as it used to be. So if a creative can just sit home and activate somebody’s product for them online and make money, isn’t that the best way for them now?”

“All these while, why didn’t they send memos to all these betting companies to pre-warn them? Why do you wait and take food out of our mouths?” Mimi wondered.

The Gaming Commission of Ghana under its supervisory mandate drawn from Section 3 (2) (g) of the Gaming Act, 2006 (Act 721), last week, released guidelines on advertising for operators of games of chance, including banning betting companies from using celebrities in their advertisement or as ambassadors.

According to the commission, the decision “is to ensure that advertisements by operators are conducted in a responsible manner devoid of promises of any predetermined outcomes, appeals/enticements to Gamble to the vulnerable in society as well as minimise exposure to minors where applicable.”

But Mimi contends that if indeed the government cares about minors, it should work towards putting structures in place to save the arts.

“Some of the youth are potential musicians, actors and all that. So if you really want to help the youth, why not fix the creative industry? If the industry was good, probably, nobody would have been complaining about betting and alcohol. If the royalties were coming as they are supposed to, and genuinely, if we had better systems in our industry, probably, these regulations would have been understood,” she stated.

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