PR Can’t Die

CONTRARY TO POPULAR BELIEF, PR IS HERE TO STAY, AND IT IS NOT GOING ANYWHERE

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Over the years there has been a debate around the relevance of PR in the post digital world. There has been major cut down on the use of paper in many large economies of the world and the consumption habit of consumers for text has increasingly shifted from paper to digital. We are more accustomed to bright screens and colourful images, which is totally different from what the newspapers serve us.

Some of have even taken the debate a notch higher by saying PR is dead. I definitely would not spend any time talking about their reasons for this assertion, but the truth is PR cannot die.

Truth be told, the way PR was done in the past has actually transformed into what we know today and as such the PR for tomorrow would equally evolve. To say PR is dead or will die is a strong proclamation in error. We thankful for the digital medium of information dissemination but it will never take the place of PR. As long as there are human beings on earth, as long as there are products to sell, as long as there are brands to promote, as long as there are offices to manage, PR would find its place in the world of marketing and marketing communications.

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There are a number of things PR achieves for us and highlighted below are a few;

PR gives credibility 

Marketers and brands are currently in a battlefield and the fighters aren’t called gladiators but sound-iators. With everyone screaming at you saying “I’m the best, I’m number one, I know what I’m doing” you need PR to authenticate your claims and get your sound beyond the clutter.

Thought leadership drive

A lot of businesses and brands want to be seen as a thought leader or subject matter expert. You may not be able to achieve this drive without the inclusion of PR.

Impacts your bottom line

Your sales and marketing drive are channeled to reach your bottom line. PR helps improve brand trust and compels your customers to believe in the brand whilst engineering loyalty. 

If you thought PR was just another increase in budget or an irrelevant expenditure you may want to rethink this. 

Bringing Sexy Back

WHETHER OR NOT YOU LIKE IT, WHETHER THEY OFFEND YOU ON THE ROADS OR NOT, THEY ARE CERTAINLY COMING BACK – SAY HELLO TO BIKES.

Source: gokada.com.ng

Source: gokada.com.ng

Locally

A few years ago, bike-hailing – popularly known as Okada in Nigeria – was scrapped in many cities in the country, particularly the urban areas. All those who were plying their trade in that line of business back in the day either went out of work or ventured into some other type of business to make ends meet. A few years later, some brands who are now the industry’s top market players came on the scene to bring sexy back and this they did in grand style. Feeding off of the back of Uber’s success, severe traffic conditions in the country, and the quest to find new ways to make more money by the Nigerian populace, it was seemingly the right timing for ride-hailing to get back on the scene.

Players like Maxng, Gokada, and Opay have recorded great success and the industry isn’t just attaining mega feats in Nigeria, also globally. The ride-sharing market is booming, and regardless of certain obstacles it has shown no sign of slowing down. The global ride-sharing market is predicted to reach $170 Billion by 2025, up from $43 billion in 2017, according to Adroit Market Research. This growth is making room for new players around the world, challenging market leaders and expanding the original ride-hailing model into a nimble, omnichannel suite of services.

Source: technext.ng

Source: technext.ng

Global Outlook

In China, ride-hailing services are proliferating and pivoting to address a variety of offerings –attracting the attention of big investors in the process. Visa sought a strategic partnership to invest in Indonesia-based ride-hailing startup Go-Jek to build out their in-app payment platform. Go-Jek amassed a $1 billion investment in January 2019 from a host of heavy-hitting tech companies including Google, Tencent and JD.com, aiding the expansion of Go-Jek’s mobile payment and food delivery services. Go-Jek started with a fleet of 20 motorcycle taxis in 2011 and has since expanded to offer a wide-ranging portfolio of services, including transportation and logistics – from the original taxis to shipping and moving services – food delivery and personal care services like on-demand massages, manicures and waxing. Also, In April 2019, Singapore-based ride-hailing app Grab announced a new suite of services for seamless activity planning. The new services allow users to book hotels, purchase movie tickets and stream video on-demand through the Grab app. This rollout follows a collaboration with Chinese insurance giant Ping An in August 2018, making healthcare another potential enhancement of Grab’s omnichannel toolbox, building onto mobile payment, food delivery and online booking (JWTIntelligence).

Source: techcrunch.com

Source: techcrunch.com

This is really interesting as Nigerian players would need to watch their backs. InDriver, a ride-hailing service that launched in 2012 in Russia expanded its reach to Tanzania in 2018 and has announced that they’ll be spreading into countries like Nigeria, Ghana, Zimbabwe, and Namibia. Personally, I can’t wait to enjoy all the benefits that will come from promotional advertising from these heavy hitters.

Marketing and Sales; A Blurred Line Armed with Artificial Intelligence

SOON THERE’LL BE NO DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A MARKETER AND A SALESMAN, THANKS TO AI

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So, me and a couple of my colleagues got into an argument about the differences between sales and marketing and we argued about which was more important. We eventually agreed that they both had their place as they both are important, however, the line that separates them is gradually being blurred out as AI is helping both end of the stick achieve same results in the same time frame. Marketers and salesmen would both be able to build brands over time and also make sales immediately as they are now armed with artificial intelligence.

AI does a couple of things but here are a few;

Data acquisition: one area artificial intelligence (AI) has been able to get right over the years is collecting data. Data has always been a holy grail for both marketers and salesmen as it helps with predicting the next point of action, purchase, and effective marketing strategy to deploy.

Automate repetitive tasks: in marketing there are certain tasks that are repetitive and trust me, they can be extremely daunting to undertake every now and then. AI allows you the opportunity to be more efficient and increases your productivity by availing you the opportunity to focus on more important tasks. A report by Mckinsey further buttresses this point as they say nearly 45% of tasks can be automated to achieve the afore mentioned benefits.

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Create a great consumer experience: what do consumers want? Many times, they want to save time, time is money, they say. Consumers want a vendor that can be swift and equally efficient. The more your brand or organization spends a lot of time dealing with mundane issues the more at risk you are to lose your consumer to your competition who is more agile. AI helps your organization attain agility quicker as it will deal with “mundane” issues while your staff can focus on dealing with consumers who require a more human approach to cater for their need.

Although AI is increasingly becoming the more intelligent with every new update it still doesn’t take away certain processes from staff. To adopt the right AI solution, you or a member of staff must devote sometime to brand audit – understand your strengths and weaknesses, also know what your competition is doing. Next, decisively outline what the desired AI tool should achieve and then adopt one.

In this age where the lines between marketing and sales are getting blurred with each passing second every marketer or salesman must be armed with AI to win.

Africa’s Owning the Spotlight

BEYONCE’S ALBUM “THE GIFT” HAS GOT THE WORLD VIBING TO THE SOUND OF AFRICA

Source: Waploaded

Source: Waploaded

Following a successful premier of the Lion King movie, star artiste Beyonce Knowles-Carter released a one of its kind album and it has got the world in some sort of “spirit” mode. The movie which would see the star artiste play the role of Nala (Simba’s love affair – in the movie) was originally released in 1994 as a cartoon produced by Walt Disney. I practically grew up watching that cartoon, I think I must have seen it nearly a thousand times, to the point I could recite the lines of each character word for word. To be honest, Scar was my best character – he had a goal and he was determined to get it no matter what – he was ambitious, although he was cunning, a sly guy, and a liar (characters I don’t approve of).

I am particularly excited that such an album was released in my time. I guess it’s just the right time for Africa to feel the limelight for a bit and an opportunity for us to get this sound that we love so much to eardrums beyond our shores on a larger scale. Beyonce Knowles-Carter said that this album is her to gift to Africa and as such she set out to work with the best of the best in the African entertainment industry. The album featured many of Africa’s finest musicians such as Wizkid, Yemi Alade, Burna Boy, Mr Eazi, Tiwa Savage, Tecno, Shatta Walle, and more. 

One of the most difficult things I encountered while listening to this album was picking a favourite song, the album is simply phenomenal and if you haven’t heard it yet, I TINK you should and if you already have, kindly leave your thoughts on any of the songs in the comment section below.

Entrepreneurs are the Real Avengers

AFRICA CONTINUES TO FLOURISH AS ENTREPRENEURS BEARS ITS FULL WEIGHT ON THEIR SHOULDERS.

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Nearly every definition you can find over the internet or in books around the word "Entrepreneur " is skewed towards portraying the entrepreneur as someone who starts a business or a “start-upper”. That doesn’t even nearly capture what the entrepreneur is about. His high coffee consumption, sleepless nights, persistent headaches aren’t just because he is trying to start a business but because he understands that he bears the weight of the world on his shoulder. He is saddled with the responsibility of providing a solution that caters for specific human needs – that’s how great businesses are born.

Entrepreneurs serve as a country's economic pillar, playing important roles in the country's economy, from creating new businesses, inventing goods and services which results in employment, thereby adding to the country's national income.

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Let me show you a direct representation of what entrepreneurs can do.

There are over 582 million entrepreneurs in the world. Africa as the second largest continent in the world has been blessed with an astonishing number of such individuals, with over 22 percent of its working population starting new businesses, which is the highest rate compared to any other region of the world. As a result of input from entrepreneurs, Nigeria's GDP increased by 1.9% in 2018 garnering $392.270 billion compared to 2017's $376.361billion. Nigeria's GDP has averaged $125.26 billion form 1960 until 2018 making an all-time high of $568.5 billion in 2014 – The Hill report.

Buoyed by a strong youth population, Africa is flourishing on the backs of these entrepreneurs. Vocational trainings are being introduced to both secondary and tertiary institutions in Nigeria in order to fuel the entrepreneurship drive in the nation. Thereby giving them the necessary tools to chart their own course.

The trend of entrepreneurship in Africa cannot go unnoticed as it leads the continent into a bright new future. They are the real avengers.