After the National Anthem, yours truly started my presentation by talking about POWESHIFT: how people are shifting the way the people and brands communicate. The presentation can be found here. I went into various statistics on how social media is being rapidly adopted by people and how brands are using it in reaching their target audience. I also included what I called the 10 Rules of Engagement, which seeks to itemize the 10 factors to consider when engaging people and brands on Social Media platforms. On account of sharing experiences, questions and answers, we also talked about the availability of social media agencies in Nigeria, the effectiveness and direct impact of social media on ROI (Return on Investment). We also defined Return on Engagement (ROE) which is the measurement of the impact of Engagement on brand perception and value.
Mr Yinka Olaito, Lead Consultant of Michael Sage Consulting and President of the Social Media Club of Nigeria took the next session on “Branding in the Age of Social Media”. He went explained that social media is a tiger that needs to be tamed to be effective. To make effective use of it, needs training and taming because a misuse of social media for branding can also lead to serious backlash is if it is not handled properly. He mentioned that engaging social media is giving the people, potential customers and clients the opportunity to open up discussions with and on brands. He also went into details of how Nigerians are using social media to tarnish brand ‘Nigeria’. Citing lots of pictures shared on social media platforms (blogs, BB messengers, forums and social networks), he went on to share how those pictures, jokes and banters affect public perception and the things we need to begin to do to promote the Nigerian brand.
Tunji Meshioye, who represented Dayo Adefila of Hotsauce Limited, expanded the scope from the digital advertising angle. He proposed that social media should not be approached singly as a platform as there are lots of other avenues also emerging to complement targeted advertising. Mobile and web applications are also opening up opportunities and this is important to know for people and brands hoping to reach their audience directly and want measurable results.
Loy Okezie, of Techloy also spoke on “How brands can leverage Bloggers” in reaching their target audience. He shared his experiences on how his posts had stirred the attention of one of the telecommunication companies in Nigeria. He also went further to talk about the impact bloggers have and the influence they have in shaping public perception on the digital space. He also went on to detail the impact they can have especially in relation to consumer protection and improving customer service. He mentioned three ways brands can leverage on bloggers. He mentioned that they should get more invited to press conferences and events, have more access to news scoops and breaking news and they can act as ambassadors.
Somewhere along the event, people had their lunch break, networking sessions, press interviews e.t.c. While the programme raised a lot of important knowledge and discussion points, it was clear social media was being given a lot of thinking by brands, the concern for measurement (ROI) and its impact on the perception of the brand is something brand strategists, advertisers and marketing professionals need to give a lot of thought. Overall while I was the organizer, I still think it was great, educative and fun.