Minibuzz

Minibuzz is a thirty‐minute current affairs television program filmed on a minibus where passengers discuss and debate the news and issues affecting their lives. The program is recorded in the morning and broadcast nationwide each evening, Monday through Friday, during primetime. In addition, an hour-long Omnibus airs every weekend.

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Minibuzz features people whose voices are otherwise unheard – the poor and vulnerable populations of sub Saharan Africa. People in urban as well as rural areas explain how they experience life, cope with their challenges, share their aspirations and express their views and opinions. Minibuzz encourages leaders to deliver on the promise of good governance and effective service delivery. In this manner, the program gives voice to the powerless and empowers and informs the public on a wide variety of social issues.

Minibuzz Format

The program is recorded each day in a minibus that is transformed into a mobile TV studio with cameras, microphones and editing equipment
Filmed in the morning, the broadcast is aired that very evening, nationwide at prime time
Participants are random passengers that enter the minibus for a ride to a specific designation, following actual bus routes.  The passengers are a diverse mix of young and old, male and female etc.
Two fully briefed presenters lead the group discussions on topics that change daily
Two separate topics, each around 8-10 minutes long, are discussed during each half-hour episode
A monitor in the minibus allows the passengers to view pre-produced videos (instarts) that contribute to an understanding of the topic.

Viewers & Impact

Broadcasting over 250 episodes per year, Minibuzz reaches a broad and diverse audience. The program is viewed by 3.5 million viewers each evening in Tanzania and 2 million in Uganda, Monday through Friday.

The Minibuzz program reaches low and middle income men and women, young and old, located in urban and rural areas. The program is aired during ‘prime time’ peak hours on national television to gain maximum reach. Viewership is split between rural and urban viewers, with an even gender split across people of all ages, including the young and old. Discussions on our Facebook and Twitter pages help to engage our middle to low-income audience beyond the programs broadcast.

A recent analysis of viewership (in Tanzania or Uganda) found:

85% of viewers say that Minibuzz provides them with useful and practical information, the same as the evening news
86% of respondents rated topics on Minibuzz as very relevant
63% of respondents answered that they often discuss the topics from the show with friends and family
28% of respondents have taken action as a direct result of watching the show

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Social Return On Investment (SROI)

Research carried out on Minibuzz Tanzania in 2012 revealed:

Every dollar invested in the Minibuzz program returns an average 30.7 dollars of social value. SROI research specialist, Sally Bagenal claimed this to be highly impressive and impossible in developed countries around the world.

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