Out of innate passion and thirst for uniqueness..a fashion brand aimed at meeting the daily trendy and casual needs of the modern day human was birthed. 1805 Ministry *as we choose to call it* is reinventing a wholly modern approach to fashion. Under the vision of Creative Director Muyiwa Shoyombo, 1805 Ministry seeks to carve […]
So Cassie Daves and I have been discussing this topic in secret and I think it’s the appropriate time to share my thoughts.
Since I started blogging I’ve been privileged to work with a substantial amount of brands, see them HERE. Both in Nigeria and internationally. With that, I have noticed a lot of difference in the business of blogging in Nigeria and abroad. Many of which are not favorable to Nigerian bloggers.
I’d be doing a series on this topic, and this is the first of three. Today’s topic is “Approach”. I hope a fellow blogger or brand would read this and effect some changes in their PR & business activities.
Many Nigerian companies approach bloggers for brand exposure (meaning they acknowledge your value & influence). However, the remuneration and manner of approach they bring to us sometimes isn’t the most encouraging. Let me give you a vivid example of a UK company that mailed me for partnership, Versus a Nigerian company.
“Hello Tosin, Trust you’re doing well. I’m Mark from xxxx company, We got your mail from the contact section of your blog. My team was doing an online round-up of Nigerian bloggers and africanismcosmopolitan.com came up. Your content is fresh and original which resonates with what our brand stands for, we especially loved your post on xxxxxx. That being said, we’d be honoured if you’re interested in participating in our new campaign targeted at youths between ages 18-29. For now our company cannot afford to give cash compensations but is willing to offer you products worth £200, with an extra 10% coupon code for your readers. You’d be given the liberty to choose the products you want from our website embedded HERE.
Kindly let us know if this is something that would interest you. Our company & Campaign information can be found here & here, do not hesitate to reply this mail with any questions you may have.
Mark Cumming( Marketing & PR)
Good day sir/ma,
Please find attached a press release for your blog, Our company xxxx is currently undergoing a new brand campaign, we have selected a number of bloggers in Nigeria, and you’ve been included. Kindly send your mailing address and contact number so we could send you a product from our new range. Otherwise you can pick up from our outlet at No. X, xxxx street, xxxx, Lagos.
You can reply this mailing address with any question you may have,
We anticipate your response,
Follow us on twitter, Facebook & Instagram
Toun Okoro ( xxxx company)
Notice the difference in the manner of approach. Both companies may/may not have a budget for this campaign, however if I were to do a free post/review/advert, the company I’d choose is clear. The first company did the following:
- Addressed me with my name
- Mentioned my blog and referred to a post (showed they went through/acknowledge my work)
- Mentioned their target audience to show its in line with my readers.
- Explained that they do not have a monetary form of remuneration currently.
- Offered a substantial compensation, that could add value to me and my blog readers.
- Left contact details and a website to learn more about them.
- Asked/hoped if I’d be Interested, not assumptous.
WHEREAS THE NIGERIAN COMPANY
- Referred to me as sir/ma.
- Did not mention my blog or name (makes it seem impersonal or was a mass email request)
- Did not tell me about their campaign or where I could learn more.
- Said I was ‘included’ as though it was something I applied for.
- Assumed I had an obligation to publish their attached press release.
- Overall message seemed imposing, instead of coming off as a proposal for consideration.
To bloggers what I’m saying is this, These companies approached you for a reason, they felt you could add value to them some sort of way, hence you should be seen as an asset to their company. As a blogger you fall under advertising and media, which is included in their yearly budget.
What you spend your time, energy and money on you value. So when these companies approach you, see yourself as an asset as well.
Many big name firms would approach you, which truthfully is a great opportunity, but in business there is no charity. Partnerships favours BOTH parties either monetary or not.
So as a blogger do not say ‘ WOW Apple contacted me to review their new watch” Instead think like this “I’m glad Apple reached out to me, it shows my hard work, online platform and audience base is well valued”.
Point is this, don’t sell yourself short. Freebies won’t pay for your internet data, camera or domain name maintenance.
I hope this post communicates my thoughts well, I sincerely do not mean to sound abrupt, I just feel Nigerian businesses have a lot to improve on as regards their business modules and marketing efforts.
The next post on this topic would be on ‘Budgets and Fees”. The money aspect of blogging.
Please Feel free to share, drop a comment and ask questions below.
This post is owned by Africanismcosmopolitan.com and parts or all of it must not be republished without prior consent of author, in cases where the post is being referred to, kindly link the blog name. Legal actions would be taken when otherwise.
Hello, It’s almost a week since I’ve been in Lagos and I’ve been moving up and down. From catching up with family to getting things fixed. For some reason everything in my room was broken when I got back. The bulbs were out, bathroom was funny looking and the room full of cobwebs. I used […]
It’s another post on 20 Lessons of my 20’s, Thank you so much for the amazing comments, Facebook shares, tweets and emails on the last segment! I’m ever grateful, If you missed it read HERE.
20 Lessons of my 20’s discusses various things I’ve learnt and I’m still learning as a young woman. Today’s discussion is one quite dear to me and ‘happenings’ this week inspired this topic as lesson number 2.
The title Privileges and sentiments connotes, those that have/experience good things in their lives and the notion that you should be ‘humble’ A.K.A apologetic about those blessings. Cases in which sentiment has overruled reality and the word humble has been taken out of context.
All ‘lessons’ are solely a result of my personal experiences, but I do hope they are valuable and worth sharing to someone else. Do have an open mind whilst reading….
1. HAVE WHAT YOU WANT: Growing up I remember watching those Nollywood dramas that taught you when/if anything good happens, you shouldn’t share/tell anyone or else misfortune would come upon you……It’s funny how this cultural analogy has become the behavioural construct of most individuals when it comes to gratitude or expressing opinions about other people’s lives. This past year, I’ve learnt that people have the right to be who they are and want whatever they desire regardless of my sentiment, upbringing or interests.
I had a conversation with someone the other day and I was telling her how I really would enjoy having the finer things in life i.e luxury. And If I could afford the jet set life, I would most likely indulge. She had this condescending response with the need to remind me how charity and philanthropy should be more important. I smiled because I couldn’t remember admitting to her that luxury was of utmost importance or charity was of less importance to me. I told her Giving, respect, morals, charity, and goodworks amongst others are values embedded in me that no amount of wealth can take away. Also I believe that discussing the philanthropic gestures I do/intend to do in the future doesn’t validate me as a good person, neither does not-talking about it make me less humane or charitable.
But I then realised that this is where the cultural/non-cultural sentiment comes in. If one posts images or shares articles on charity works e.g visit to orphanages, community service or make public donations, they are tagged as humble/generous, or perceived as having a sense of purpose because they are ‘helping’ others. While if another looks nice/visits nice places and posts pictures, they are also often tagged as ‘show-offs’. In reality what’s the difference between the two scenarios? but you be the judge.
I’m pro good works, but I often ask why people feel those who like/have the finer things in life are tagged Wasteful/proud/vain/flamboyant? I personally feel people have the right to spend their resources on what they want, either to give it away or spend it on themselves -it’s a matter of choice.
However, it’s nice to give some, spend some and save some, but the truth is other people’s fund management is really not your business or mine. In fact, I think the greater problem lies with those who are quick to express such opinions as regards who is what and why.
Many preachers in Nigeria today face this stigma, one can’t have a fleet of cars or landed properties abroad, without being discussed in tabloids as fake or flamboyant. I am one christian that believes that our greatest goal is not just to make heaven but also to have dominion while fulfilling purpose on earth. There is absolutely nothing wrong with having good things, Ecclesiastes 5:18-20 makes this sink.
“This is what I have observed to be good: that it is appropriate for a person to eat, to drink and to find satisfaction in their toilsome labour under the sun during the few days of life God has given them – for this is their lot. Moreover, when God gives someone wealth and possessions, and the ability to enjoy them, to accept their lot and be happy in their toil – this is a gift of God. They seldom reflect on the days of their life, because God keeps them occupied with gladness of heart” NIV
Hence, do not entertain those who sugar coat their lack of discretion/spite/envy with sentiments.
2. THE THIN LINE: As with anything there’s always a thin line, and in this case it’s between gratitude, self-confidence and sheer pride. Gratitude is simply being appreciative or thankful, self-confidence is a healthy esteem. Now how does one merge being thankful and self-confident without coming off as proud/vain/self obsessed/arrogant. It’s not so simple because you really have no control over what others decide to think. Even Jesus who came as the messiah was called a blasphemer of precepts………
Humility is acknowledging that you are not self-sufficient and more scriptural; its living with the understanding that you are purely a product of grace, subject to the will of God. I observed that the main reason why people are quick to tag others as proud/vain/self obsessed/arrogant is either because the accused really shows those fruits or the pointing finger is plainly spiteful . However, I got some instructions from my life manual on principles of living which have helped me to create a balance either when acquiring things, marketing my strengths or even publicly sharing comments/moments.
a. Do not be empty with/without vanity: I have said in the first point that it’s ok to have vanity(cars, houses, clothes etc; all is vanity) However, I believe there is more to life than material possessions. Now ask yourself what virtues you possess if you lose all your ‘material blessings’? Virtue is “moral excellence” and “goodness”. Ecclesiastes 5:15 explains this point well;
Everyone comes naked from their mother’s womb, and as everyone comes, so they depart.They take nothing from their toil”.
As a believer you should actually invest more heavily on your soul/inner man because everything vain depreciates, see 2 Corinthians 4:16.
Further more, be of substance without possessions, let your appraisal be that which radiates God’s glory and precepts. A heart that speaks louder than acquisitions. i.e. in more practical terms, Strive for “she has integrity alongside She has nice clothes”. In totality, have a full dose of the fruits of the spirit: Love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control while having ‘dominion’ on earth.
b. Add Value: I think this is my best phrase. I learnt it from my dad, he says it to me at the slightest opportunity, If I say I’m going out he’d say “what value is where you are going to adding to you presently” I’d laugh at what I considered paranoia. But in reflection I agree with him. When doing absolutely everything, strive to ensure it has a positive impact, either to you or your immediate environment(social responsibility). Avoid doing things for doing sake, avoid being lukewarm. I learnt recently from @adaezeDiana that “In All I do, It’s either I’m being pulled closer to God or farther from him”. Sounds daunting but its true. You may say how does something trivial affect my walk with God e.g a thought, a visit or even an Instagram picture……. but aren’t we accountable for ALL actions of that day? One of my favourite scriptures buttresses this: 1 Corinthians 10:23 “We are free to do all things, but there are things that are not wise to do. We are free to do all things, but not all things are edifying”
c. Mind your business: Tomilola Escada would probably resonate with me on this, we had a discussion a while ago about sharing opinions on others, and she shared with me a scenario where the Holyspirit asked her if the matter was really her business, and I laughed so hard. But then again it’s so true, apt and real. We all say ‘mind your business’, but do we really do? Someone does something you begin to ask yourself/friends why, you begin to analyse the lives of others either mentally or with buddies. I’ve been guilty of this in the past and I have refuted such behaviour. Meddling in the lives of others brings about idleness, gossiping, hate, discord, jealousy and unfruitfulness amongst other vices. There are also many scriptures on this but l would share just two. Proverbs 10:9 When there are many words, transgression is unavoidable, But he who restrains his lips is wise. Ecclesiastes 5:2 Do not be quick with your mouth, do not be hasty in your heart to utter anything before God. God is in heaven and you are on earth, so let your words be few.
In essence what have I been on about? …Never apologize for the good things in your life, they may not necessarily be privileges but they are sure blessings! Be grateful, love others, serve and enjoy your life.
And I pray for good fortune in everything you do, and for your good health, that your everyday affairs prosper, as well as your soul_ 3 John 1:2
That’s all for today, 18 more to go. I hope to one day publish these writings into a book/compilation, but until then it’s all for you my blog readers!
Have a fruitful week ahead!
Got Questions, requests or suggestions? Kindly leave a comment below, I’d love to hear from you
Hope your weekend went awesome! Mine was quite eventful. I woke up on Saturday morning craving Akara i.e Bean cake. You all know my love for pap i.e Ogi, and I think there is nothing more satisfying than Pap with any bean delicacy; Ranging from moi-moi, palm oil beans or bean cake. So I decided to go with the latter. The cooking is quite easy, but the preparation process is the main task. You have to soak the beans for a minimum of 4hours then peel off the brown part/skin, before you blend and fry. I would make a video later this week on it for my YouTube community, but a lot of blog readers in Nigeria complain about videos and the internet struggle there, so here is a step by step pictorial for you lovelies! Do enjoy!
Have an awesome week ahead!
Got Questions, requests or suggestions? Kindly leave a comment below, I’d love to hear from you
How I love it when fellow bloggers tag me in posts, I feel very special lol! Thank you …..
Today I’d be doing a Blog tour! I was tagged by the beautiful and extremely witty Dewunmi of Koolstory Blog, She’s a fictional christian writer. Her blog is such a breath of fresh air, scented with intelligence and sheer wisdom….(permit all my flattery, she’s actually also my family friend, T.M.I ‘we attended the same primary school & university, and our mums are close friends’ ^.^ lol so you understand all the love now). lets get right into the ‘Blog tour’
1.) What am I working on?