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.

How Do You Listen To Music?

MUSIC STREAMING PLATFORMS IN AFRICA HAVE BECOME A BIG DEAL AND ARE TRANSFORMING HOW WE LISTEN TO MUSIC

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Tap your feet, nod you head, hum a beat, and dance on the streets, nobody seems to be walking straight these days – there’s either a tune in their heads or a beat in their steps. Coupled with the growing culture of headphones in Africa it just seems like a no brainer for this trend to take center stage. The way we consume music in Africa has obviously evolved and it’s certainly exciting. I sincerely can’t remember the last time me or any of my colleagues didn’t use a music streaming platform to enjoy great African music.

Listening to music used to be limited to turning on your radio, or the tv set, or downloading it on your device so you can share and also listen at a time of your choosing but right now we can stream it. These music streaming platforms have become increasing popular among the younger generations (millennials and generation z) as it is forming a large part of their lifestyle. These young people use these platforms to gain recognition in terms of followership and acceptability, make some money (some of these platforms pay you for streaming original content), have a good time, and stay up-to-date with entertainment trends.

Source: Vactualpapers

Source: Vactualpapers

Digital music streaming platforms such as Deezer, Spotify, Mtn Music +, Apple music, Habari, Boomplay, and so on have taken advantage of the rise in earphones culture, the increased penetration of smart devices, strong and affordable data, and a healthy youthful population in Africa to build a multi-million dollar business.

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It now seems ancient to just download songs to your device to listen or share, now we stream it. Music has always been the pulse of any vibrant community and it has found a way to be a part of our daily routine as it thrives on the back of these digital streaming platforms. After music is made, we stream it to hear it – it’s a whole new experience.

As a result, music producers and artists have adopted the digital first strategy – launching their work on digital media before going on traditional platforms - as they are certainly going to reach a larger number of Africans in so little time.

Like they say “content is king” therefore digital is the King Maker and if music is the beat, then music streaming platforms are the heart.

Battle for the Eardrums

THE EARPIECE WEARING CULTURE IN AFRICA IS CREATING A WHOLE NEW MARKET

Source: Dreamstime

Source: Dreamstime

It’s a bright and sunny day on any particular day of the week as it is every other day in tropical Africa when it is not a rainy season – one of the predominant seasons in Africa. Still nursing hopes of beholding a snow flake fall through the African skies but loving the African weather just the way it is, we wake up every morning to a hot or cold shower, say a prayer – most of Africa is very religious, get dressed, and head out to conquer the world. Although, we often stop at the door, walk back into the house to pick up a vital accessory we nearly forgot - the earpiece.

The earpiece wearing trend in Africa has become a culture, a way of life that has eaten deep into the society. I remember riding the bus onetime and realized that nearly every single person sitting in the bus had their earpiece on. Although, the elderly in the society frown at it out of concern for their ears but the massive youthful population housed in Africa have almost entirely embraced the culture. You’ll find people on the streets, at homes, or in their offices (places where they do business) wearing an ear plug.

Source: Marketing donut

Source: Marketing donut

This culture is largely buoyed by the love for contemporary African music, the need to speak to friends, loved ones, and business partners while driving, the need to get the best out of video calls, and the shear need of wanting to be alone or cut one’s self out of the presence of others in order to concentrate.

This culture has given rise to a growing market which has made audio music providers such as Deezer, Boomplay, Apple music, Samsung music, Spotify, and so on very popular. As a result these audio music providers or platforms are in a battle to deepen their market share on the African soil, deploying exemplary marketing strategies to win the fight for the eardrums.

However, the side effects to wearing earpieces may include tinnitus (noise in ear), hyperacusis, ear infection, pains, loss of hearing, or worse, affect the brains. In as much as we may not be able to abandon the trend we should devise healthier means of using our beloved earpieces to prevent any of these side effects from occurring.

Star Rewrote the Stars

SORRY ZACK EFRON AND ZENDAYA, IN NIGERIA, STAR LAGER BEER HAS ULTIMATELY REWRITTEN THE STARS WITH ITS EPOCH MAKING PARTNERSHIP WITH NIGERIA’S POP CULTURE SENSATION, BURNABOY.

I’m thinking of the best place to start this article as a thousand thoughts flood my head as I think about it. But first I’d like to point out that the brand manager behind this collaboration (Star and Burnaboy) is at the top of his game. They got it right with this one. I do not see anyone else who would have been a best fit for the star brand as he has a larger than life personality.

Nigeria’s leading beer brand, Star lager beer, has after 70 years decided to take on a brand ambassador – what took them so long? I guess they were waiting for Burnaboy to be born. Following the 2018 stellar performance from the self-acclaimed “African Giant” who practically made the airwaves his personal playground, he immediately fit into the shoes of he whom Star had been waiting for all these years.

In this age of mergers and strategic partnerships, Star has just taken a huge leap into the future and has strengthened efforts into owning Africa’s youth market. Both brands, Star and Burnaboy, transcends the Nigerian market and we are sure that this development will be greeted with open arms beyond its shores.

Star’s identity just went up a notch higher as the brand now has a clear cut sound called Afro Fusion as Burnaboy would call it. Joining forces with its unique taste and colour, the brand comes alive. Little wonder why they want each one of us to come over to the brighter side of life.

Over the years, the artiste has been thought to be controversial despite having intangible controversial records and this has seen many of his works go unnoticed. We at TINK applaud his ability to rise and stay afloat regardless of the strength of the opposition – which in my opinion is what the Star brand is about.

Slang ‘Pon the Tongue

IMAGE CREDIT: FREEPIK

IMAGE CREDIT: FREEPIK

ACROSS AFRICA WE HAVE SEEN A PLETHORA OF SLANGS ENTER OUR VOCABULARY AND THIS TREND SEEMS TO BE VERY EVIDENT IN AFRICA’S MOST POPULOUS NATION, NIGERIA.

The Nigeria music industry is known to always introduce new slangs. These popular slangs are embraced by individuals in different parts of the world. The popular Nigerian performer and song writer, Olamide also known as “Baddo” has been recognized as the king of slangs. This is because, he introduces new slangs in nearly all of his hit singles that find their way into our vocabulary.

Consider this article a sneak peek into an unspoken trend in the Nigerian music industry.

In 2018, an avalanche of slangs (new buzzwords) enveloped the industry. Some of which include “stew” by Wizkid in his song “Fever,” “Ji Masun,” “Saint Sami – Ganja” slangs made famous by the Otunba Lamba, etc. The songs upon which these slangs are buoyed allows listeners explore their youth by bursting new dance moves and allowing them showcase their skills on social media as they join in on the trend. As such curator develop hashtags on social media which allows for visibility and trend hopping.

Currently, one slang burning up the Nigerian airwaves is “Gbe Body E”. You can’t simply walk the street without hearing it. It’s in conversations, tantrums, songs, movies, and everything else you can hear. The other day, my colleague used this same slang on me and then I knew I had to join the bandwagon.

The 'Gbe Body E' slang is a contemporary Yoruba slang for "move away or lift your body." This slang which was first introduced in 2018 by indigenous rapper Zlatan Ibile as a call for everyone to get off of their feet and hit the dancefloor has refused to die down. The slang came accompanied by a dance move that has been embraced by Nigerians – Zanku dance – and has created fame for same artist.

As it looks, Nigerian artists are ready to birth new slangs.

Stay woke and gbe body eh.