Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : May 28th 2015 Contents Although she only start-
ed Media InSite Ltd in
July 2011, Allison
Demas is ready to
expand to Jamaica and
Guyana with further
prospects in the East-
ern Caribbean. Her company, which employs
13 full-time employees, offers advertising
and media monitoring services to advertisers,
advertising agencies and broadcasters. In
other words, it provides competitive adver-
Demas---founder, chief executive and
chairman---is also a lawyer who specialised
in copyright and entertainment law and
practised for 12 years in T&T. She then went
to the United States to do a masters degree
in intellectual property, commerce and tech-
She spoke to the Business Guardian at
the 9A Stanmore Avenue, Port-of-Spain
location, about the important role that
advertising intelligence plays in operating a
The advertising spend in T&T, according
to Demas, is $1 billion per annum based on
open media rates. She said if so much money
has to be spent, it is important for advertisers
to know their market, competitors and the
media habits of their competitors.
"Given the quantum of investment, it is
critical for advertisers to be able to protect
their investment. They must be able to
ensure what they are paying for is what
they are actually getting. For example, that
the media houses are playing the advertise-
ments according to the schedule as con-
"Media monitoring is a way of marrying
all my interests. A lot of the systems we
use, such as software which is patented,
forms part of a copyright. Therefore it is
using technology to advance business. We
talk about us diversifying our economy, we
have so much natural resources in terms of
our creativity. We have a fairly well-educated
population and this is a means of harnessing
that knowledge economy."
The former chief executive of the Copy-
right Organisation of T&T said her vision
for the company is to be the premier media
monitoring company across the Caribbean.
According to the company s Web site, its
directors are: Avinash D Persaud director,
George Gobin, director, and Sophia Vailloo,
"Media monitoring is new to this part of
the world. It is well established in North
America and in Latin America. It has a lot
of potential to generate income. As it is new,
there s need for much more awareness and
education about the benefits of media mon-
itoring and why companies need to protect
their media investment."
Asked what happens to her work when
a general election or a by-election takes
place, she said elections monitoring is a
very important aspect of the company s
operations. Advertising campaigns are
tracked as well.
"What we do is track all the news items
related to elections. Since proceedings of
Parliament are broadcast, it means we also
monitor and track the broadcast. We also
have the political speeches which we track.
Then, of course, social media monitoring.
There is a lot of activity, a lot of conver-
sations which we are able to track in real
time with respect to social media; conver-
sations about the T&T general election 2015.
"What was interesting was that in 2013,
we had the Chaguanas West by-election
and that certainly generated a lot of activity
in terms of advertising. Then there was the
St Joseph by-election. What we can see is
definitely there is more and more activity
with the elections."
Though the volume of advertisements
increases during elections, it does not skew
the data which her company collects.
"In terms of advertising, we capture the
universe of advertising in T&T. We capture
every single advertisement even though the
advertisers or the agency may not be a direct
client. It gives us a sense of what sectors
generate the largest amount of activity. In
2014, the Government was the largest
(advertiser). We have other sectors like tele-
com---which is very active and competi-
tive---banking, Unicomer and Prestige Hold-
ings which is one of the largest advertising
brands in T&T."
Asked whether social media has overtaken
traditional media, she said the both go hand
"Social media is a means of engaging
audiences, engaging your customers or
prospective clients, either getting them to
become loyal to your brand. We see it being
used as a strategic way of communications,
public relations as opposed to direct mar-
Depending on which age group the com-
pany wants to appeal to, they would use
social media and overall online means of
reaching its target market. An example are
"By and large, traditional advertising still
seems to be the main way of marketing."
MAY 2015 • WEEK FOUR www.guardian.co.tt BUSINESS GUARDIAN
NEWS | BG7
Hotel, and when there is an increase of visitors
there, I supply them with up to 60 units a month.
When there is fewer visitors, it can be 30 units a
Flavours include vanilla, pina colada, chocolate
and orange moka.
The Caribbean Rum Cake is currently available at
all Massy Stores, True Value, Peppercorns, Malabar
Farms, Hyatt Hotel and some stores at the Piarco
The price varies at the different outlets but buying
it directly from her costs $41 per box.
"The box is 140 kg and I went with this size because
I saw it more as a gift item for travellers. A traveller
can afford to buy something of this size and throw
it into their bag as opposed to one large size. The
Government used it during The Commonwealth
Heads of Government meeting (CHOGM). They also
use it or trade missions in other countries. So it is
an easy gift item. I also do a lot of corporate sales
Vilain currently operates out of her home in Diego
Martin but is planning to move operations to North
She envisions not only a factory kitchen that pro-
duces these cakes but a "visitors destination kitchen."
"I have a vision in keeping with tourism and opening
new avenues for visitors to T&T. I am looking to
create a kitchen where foreigners can do tours. Even
locals who are interested in tours can book as a group.
They will see how the cake is made, the different
flavours of the cake. I will also be doing tea, coffee
and drinks. I will build a deck where visitors can sit
and they can sit there overlooking the north coast.
In this way they will take way a total Caribbean expe-
She has not started construction as yet but said
would everything should be ready by Christmas.
Vilain also said that she would like to partner with
the Ministry of Tourism in this project. At the same
time, she said she is open to any potential partners
who would like to join her project.
"I have not officially gone to the Ministry of Tourism
as yet. I already encountered red tape with exportTT
but I am not going to sit around and wait six months
for any one to fund this. Whatever money I have
used so far, has come from what I have generated
from the business."
From Page 6
Allison Demas, chairman,
chief executive and founder
of Media InSite Ltd
PHOTO: MARCUS GONSALVES
firm set to expand
The advertising spend in
T&T is $1 billion per
annum based on open
media rates... it is
advertisers to know
competitors and the
media habits of their
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