The second edition of “Handle It Africa” held on 4th May 2018 at Oriental Hotel, VI, Lagos. Organized by Penzaarville Africa, the conference was designed to reach an audience of digital minded professionals and equip them with social media navigation tools. Here at Street Toolz, we understand that advertising and marketing has evolved from the plains of generic productions to strategic brand placement that targets the very core of prospective clientele. So, we joined convener, Olufemi Oguntamu at the event to fellowship with like minds.
In his opening charge, the MD of Trace Anglophone Africa, Mr. Sam Onyemelukwe, enjoined the audience to be value-centric in their approach to business.
“In reaching for a connect, one needs to prove value upfront,” he advised.
Without doubt, Social Media is as diverse as the physical society, with every walk of life represented by individuals and groups across platforms. Such was the representation of speakers at Handle It Africa 2, where thought leaders from various industries were lined up in an array of intense discourse panels.
The first panel session had three seasoned young people whose early interests in social causes have been adapted to new media. Speaking on the “Use of Social Media to Drive a Cause” Broadcast Journalist, Adenike Oyetunde; Founder of Socially Africa, Adaora Mbelu-Dania; and Model United Nations Enthusiast, Chimezie Udechukwu had a lot to say. Moderated by Legal Practitioner, Akinyemi Ayinoluwa, the session expounded on the activation of social work beyond ‘clickvitism’. According to them, Social Media is essentially an amplifier that should not totally replace physical action. To use social media to drive a cause, one needs to be open to collaboration and find inner strength along the way to drive physical action.
On the second panel, Chairman of Modern Democratic Party, Bukunyi Olateru-Olagbegi and Political Commentator, Leonard Eteh Ebute, were moderated by On Air Personality, Olive Emodi, in a discussion about how “Trends Shape Political Decisions”. Here, the question of whether social media is really a veritable tool for political communication or a mere distraction was considered. Current trends such as the twitter activities of the United States President, Donald Trump, were used as case study. Afterwards, it was established that when appropriately channeled, social media is indeed an impactful resource.
“Sometimes, all you need to change is your tool.” These were the insightful words of Adebola Williams, co-founder of RED, when he was engaged in a fireside chat.
According to him, the content need of this generation of end users is determined by fast evolving social culture. Therefore, the chameleon’s adaptive nature that allows it take on the colouration of its environment without losing its essence must be employed in creating lasting value. Social media influence is sustained by continuous delivery of value, a term that covers features such as authenticity and creativity. Ultimately, he stressed that, beyond being a game of numbers, social media marketing requires audience targeting as a key success factor.
Also in attendance as panelists were Comedians Lasisi Elenu and Kenny Blaq, two artistes who attained celebrity status by posting funny videos that went viral on social media. Both speakers responded to Moderator, TV Host/Actor, Ariyike Dimples’ questions amidst rib cracking antics that thrilled the youthful audience. “People are attracted to relatable content,” Lasisi said.
According to him, understanding the need of your audience is a major key to creating widely acceptable content. “Right now,” he said, “Nigerians need to laugh.”
Generally, both men agreed on similar points. However, Blaq added that diversification is the key to sustainability.
Eventually, the points made by all the panelists were neatly surmised in the fourth panel session moderated by Youtuber/ Media Personality, The Delphinator. Actor/ Filmmaker, Toyin Abraham, joined Convener, #FreetheSheepleMovement, Daddy Freeze and TV Host, Bolanle Olukanmi, as they emphasised the point that celebrities can in fact influence decisions. In all, it was concluded that, “to stand out in the use of social media for digital marketing, one must produce authentic and diverse content and also prepare in advance for customers by taking action beyond the keypads. This kind of balance is what underlines activities at Street Toolz, and is the reason we go all out to be equipped in order to further delight our brands.