Stakeholders in the advertising subsector of the Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC) industry have been advised to rejig their business model to meet the present day need of consumers following the evolving of the sector.
Dr. Ken Onyeali Ikpe, Group CEO, Insight Redefini who gave the advice said advertising thrived during the industrial age and now the world has embraced the digital age.
He said this when the newly elected executives of Brand Journalists Association of Nigeria (BJAN) paid him a courtesy visit in his GRA, Ikeja office on Tuesday, February 1, 2022.
In his word: “I like the conversation today around branding because that is the only relevant thing. And I started talking about this thing 20 years ago, because I saw it. Branding is a core component of business existence because if you take out the brands out of the business, it dies”.
He noted that the reason why company like Nigerian Breweries is still in existence is because of the Star and Guilder brands in which if taken away the company may die.
“What keeps them together is not advertising but the brand which is the soul of those elements. Even for human being, if you don’t understand this brand journey and that consumer journey, you might not understand the brand,” he said.
Continuing Dr Ken posited, “There is a manager for the industrial age and a manager for the information age and tech age. In the 90s when I joined Insight Communications, it was the industrial age that is where multinationals were relevant. As we speak now, the tech companies worldwide are making far more monies than the multinationals. Though, they may be small businesses but in terms of billing they are ahead. At insight, we recognised 25 years ago that advertising will not serve us because advertising was relevant when there was industrial revolution. And during this time, there was mass production which must equate mass consumption and to induce mass consumption you need mass communication so it was from mass communication advertising came- which is attention, interest, desire and action,” he posited.
Going down memory lane Dr Ken said people who are not conversant with Insight Redefini Group still know it as Insight communications- unaware of the fact it was Insight communications during the 90s.
“From Insight Communications we had a Grey network affiliations, before then it was Bates. In early 2000 we went to WPP. However, that popular entity called insight is one entity in the group and because it was the first and oldest (42 years in January 2022), it became synonymous with the group. So, when people say Insight Communications they think it is one company.
“I don’t know whether people know, but I know that it was insight Communications because that was the era of advertising. Now, in my estimation advertising has since gone- though a lot of people will tell you they are into advertising- and I thank God they are still making a living out of it some how,” he averred.
He said the group had survived for 42 years having evolved over time to create various arms of the sub-sectors across the Integrated Marketing Communications spectrum which have become market leaders in their sub-sectors. Quadrant for Public Relations, Media Comm for media planning and strategy which is the investment arm of the advertising practice, Media perspective, another media agency, Optimum Exposure for outdoor and Leo Burnett Lagos which is a second line creative agency of insight tasked to go through the soul of a human being to create communications.
In her response, newly elected Chairman of BJAN, Clara Chinwe Okoro said the essence of the visit was to formally intimate stakeholders of the activities of the association starting with the World Consumer Rights Day slated for March 15, 2022.
“Brand Journalists are thought leaders in the industry in terms of shaping perception about what is happening in the IMC space. We are journalists who cover the industry as such we are a bridge between the stakeholders and the consumers. They absolve what we read in terms of the information we put out in our different spaces and formed their perception about those we write about or the brand that they interface with in the market.
“We actually hold a very strategic position. Unfortunately, we have not strongly communicated that to our stakeholders that the perceptions we put out in our writings have a lot of impact in the brand they drive and, in the way, their organisations are perceived from the writes up we put out. So, I think it is very necessary that there is more interface with stakeholders for us to be able to communicate to the public and to put out the right materials,” Clara said.
Other members of the brand journalists delegation were Lukman Ishau, Vice Chairman, Melvin Udosen, Treasurer, Adeyemi Adefemi, Financial Secretary and Amechi Obiakpu, Chief Information Officicer (CIO). Others were Afolabi Idowu, immediate past Chairman, Elder Peter Jones and Winifred Bosa.