The Future of the Future

EVERYONE SEEMS TO BE TALKING ABOUT THE FUTURE TODAY, WHAT ARE WE PREPARING FOR?

Source: EC Tour

Source: EC Tour

All my life I heard the phrase “plan for the future, today”, but it was always said in corrective tones like I was doing something wrong living wild and free without a care in the world. All I wanted to do was live in the moment but other people thought it wrong, they said “what if you go bungee jumping and crack your neck in the process? Have you thought of getting health care and can you afford that kind of health care”? If you actually want to live wild and free and stay in the moment you also have to plan for the next moment otherwise you’ll be happy today and frustrated tomorrow.

With that being said, I think the whole world is going bungee jumping soon because everyone seems to be talking about the future, the future of work, the future of tech, the future of business, the future of music, the future of wine, the future of movies, the future of social network, the future of education, the future of weed, and so on, but today I’m talking about something special, The Future Of The Future. The last time I heard this much talk about the future I was just a boy and it was in the year 2000. For some reason, in Nigeria, we thought that year was going to be the end of the world and till this day, I don’t know why. When that didn’t happen a couple of people started to plan for the next 2000 years. Please don’t laugh, it wasn’t funny then but I think it is hilarious now.

What is the purpose of these conversations?

Well it is in no doubt that the world is in the age of disruption and everyone is thinking of future proofing their businesses and as a result, a couple of trends are emerging especially that of The Merger. Big and small organizations all over Africa are consolidating efforts for the sole purpose of ensuring sustainability.

Another trend which is equally important is Agility. This word has been thrown around throughout the year as businesses and brands are trying to position themselves in such a way that they are equipped to transform speedily when the need arises. Someone once told me and he said: “old men talk about the past, but young men talk about the future”. No one wants to be obsolete, they all want to be relevant so they invest in a nimble and forward-thinking team.

These two trends and more are the co-parents of the future. Everyone is coming together to share trends and information so that they can all ensure that no one is left behind in this race to the future. Like my favorite line from Vin Diesel in Riddick, “If you can’t keep up, don’t step up”.

What would these conversations produce?

As these conversations continue to flood the economic landscape I believe we are in for a mega shift in everything that we currently know and do. A few years ago, social networks didn’t exist but now those networks have created tons of global businesses around the world.

Soon we will birth innovations that’ll change the world – this is something Pinky and the Brain would have loved to do.

You’ve Got Your Own Chauffeur

WITH THE INCLUSION OF DOOH TO THE MARKETING MIX, ADS WILL FOLLOW YOU EVERYWHERE YOU GO

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The OOH space in Africa has largely been a source of concern for both agency and clients over the years owing to the fact that they have been puzzled with finding ways to track the efficiency of OOH – we want to know when the TA is being reached, how many has been reached, which board had the most eyeballs, what to keep doing, what to quit doing, and more. Although there has never been doubts about the effectiveness of OOH on delivering ROI but everyone just needs to see the numbers at some point. This concern therefore gave birth to DOOH – Digital Out Of Home advertising. With this innovation tracking the metrics isn’t just possible but easy.

OOH in Nigeria has come a long way since the days of traders painting rocks and walls on routes leading to trade centers. These days, we see about 11,443 standing billboard structures in the country, with 4% of our sites as Digital Out of Home (DOOH).

This reflects a whopping growth of over 600% in DOOH penetration in the last decade, commanding about 50% of the total Nigerian OOH media spend. Lagos, the nation’s nerve commercial center, boasts more than 60% of Nigeria’s entire spend in OOH (Dentsu aegis).

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The growth of DOOH in the country can be attributed to:

The need to measure growth: as stated before, agencies and clients needed to find a more effective way of measuring KPIs that are OOH specific. Since the traditional OOH boards wasn’t delivering this necessary report it was only a matter of time for digital to take over that space.

Urbanization: Nigeria in the last decade has seen what we currently describe as a technological boom. As result there’s been an upscale of the number of shopping malls, leisure parks, and more. These provide more consumer touch points which amplifies the reach of the digital out of home ads.

They are more interactive: the purpose of advertising is to get the consumer to interact with the brand, also note that the media consumption pattern of Nigerians have evolved as they are drawn to rich communication materials. As a result, the DOOH platforms provides a more intriguing and interactive mode of communicating to the desired TA. It is captivating and compelling.

With the inclusion of DOOH in marketing mix, the ads you may only see while on your phone, laptop, or other devices will be waiting for you outside your home. You won’t miss anything.

In the end, innovation is the lifeblood of business.

Agri Tech and the Future of Food

THE AFRICAN POPULATION IS SET TO HIT AN UNSETTLING 2.5 BILLION BY 2050 AND EVERYONE HAS TO EAT.

Source: Venturesafrica.com

Source: Venturesafrica.com

According to World Bank, Agriculture is major business in Africa, it employs 65% of the continent’s labour force, and accounts for 32% of the gross domestic product (GDP). These stats right here automatically calls for attention. In spite of how impressive these stats are, the sector is plagued by a plethora problems such as lack of funding, inadequate government policies, terrible mode of transportation, insufficient expertise, large out flux of young people from the sector to something seemingly more lucrative.

Well I belong to the school of thought that says “in every problem, therein lies the holy grail”. Your business or innovation isn’t regarded as relevant much less disruptive if it doesn’t find a need and meet it head on. This therefore brings me to trend that forced my fingers to write this article – Agri Tech!

Technology has found an innovative way to support agriculture in Africa. At first we learnt about mechanized farming in school; how a farmer should employ the use of tractors and so on to upscale produce, no one saw what I like to call “online farming”.

Source: cdn.artstation.com

Source: cdn.artstation.com

Source: Jbklutse.com

Source: Jbklutse.com

Agri Tech companies help farmers secure funds, get innovative ideas to produce more and healthier crops, and more importantly connects them to their market – seamless connection between the farmer and the end consumer.

Buoyed by internet and mobile technology penetration in Africa, businesses like Farmcrowdy, FarmerLine, Verdant Agri Tech, First Direct Ng, Agro Data, Esoko, and many others have effectively disrupted the agricultural sector in Africa with innovative solutions.

People have to eat and it might just be a problem if Africa meets the 2.5 billion population forecast in 2050. So our best move is to solve tomorrow’s problem today and as such Software Farming is the way to go.

Say hello to Agri Tech – The future of food.

Trickery That Works

OLD CORNS WON’T BRING NEW CROWS – LEARN NEW TRICKS; THE OLD STRATEGIES WON’T WORK

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Name one invention, service, product or anything that has been in existence for nearly ten (10) years and has remained the same. If you can, kindly put it in the comment box below and I will delete this article, but while you scan through your mind to find what that thing might be, I would like you to know that there is nothing.

This therefore drives me to ask, why haven’t you changed?

Over the years I have seen strategy documents still contain slides tagged “Competitive Analysis”, why is that slide important to you? You want to know what your competitors are doing yet you neglect what your consumers are saying or how they are evolving. Only a few marketing communications companies in Africa have gotten a hold of this trend and as such they include slides such as “consumer trends and insights”. This is important as you are not building your products for your competition but for your consumer; irrespective of the kind of business you are B2B or B2C.

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Your consumers are daily evolving and you must follow them through their evolution for your brand to remain innovative and relevant.

If this article was helpful to you, kindly hit us up in the comment section below.

The Brands Have Ears

THE JOURNEY TO AWESOMENESS IN 2019 FOR BRANDS STARTS WITH LISTENING

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People generally make the mistake of listening to others with the intent to reply; that’s actually for those who even care enough to listen. Well, I am of the school of thought that says “if you are patient enough to listen, then you should listen not with the intent to reply but with the intent to understand”. That a person is complaining doesn’t just mean he wants you to hear him but it means he wants you to understand and probably take the necessary actions.

Consumers today are becoming more vocal about their feelings; especially towards social issues such as climate change, plastic waste, greener and cleaner environment, oil spill, and so on. The issue might be about health concerns over a brands package or feminist concerns, however diverse the situation might be, it is imperative the brand listens – the listening brand will win in 2019.

I have also found out that brands make the mistake of tailoring next steps with respect to what competitors are doing, I can’t begin to say how grave a mistake that it is (read our article: Trickery That Works) because that strategy no longer works. Listen to your consumer and you are sure to find the right marketing mix that will take you to the next phase of marketing success.

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A few brands have begun to jump on this trend but a few are yet to get started. Global brand, PepsiCo ran a quick survey in 2018 to understand what consumers thought about them and if there was anything they would like them to do differently. The answers acquired helped them execute an award winning strategy during the end of same year.

Find out what your consumers want

Brands have ears and they must use them otherwise consumers (people) are going to come down hard on them.