The third edition of Handle It
Africa was resplendent as celebrities, influencers and young society sharpers
converged at Oriental Hotel Lagos on Friday May 17th, 2019 to discuss all things social media.
Conversations at Nigeria’s
foremost and most engaging social media conference centred around brands’
expectation from influencers, creating exciting content, the power of lifestyle
in social media campaigns, using social media to control political narratives
and creating additional value with social media.
Themed ‘Extending the Frontiers’,
the conference was attended by predominantly upwardly mobile young Nigerians
yearning to learn more about the pros and cons of social media.
Adenike Adebayo, a movie
reviewer and filmmaker, helmed the first panel which featured Akah Nnani,
Winifred Emmanuel, MC Lively and Oyinkansola Ewunmi.
Speaking of how he found
success on social media, MC Lively pointed to originality, saying “I
basically just told my story” and added that “to blow is not nearly
as important as staying relevant”.
Oyinkansola and Emmanuel
harped on the need to have a consistent presence, adopt a human and engaging
approach to attain success on social media.
Akah, who admitted that he
“struggled and stumbled” before he found his balance, warned that
“we should not be slave to clicks and likes”.
Chidi Okereke moderated the
session on ‘What do Brands Really Want?’ while Terver Bendega, Amalia Sebakunzi,
Tobi Bakre and Sisi Yemmie served as panelists.
The quartet spoke about the
fragile relationship between brand and influencers while they also proffered
solutions to the problems that arise from unsatisfactory campaigns.
According to Terver Bendega,
“the tension between influencers and brands comes up when influencers
overestimate how much influence they have” while Amalia noted that “the
essence of an influencer is to create original content”.
Reacting, Bakre said
influencers should be carried along if there’s going to be a meeting between
agencies and brands. He stressed that brands should engage influencers on
longer tenures for cheaper rates and urged people with personal brands not to accept
every job offered to them.
Commenting on pro-bono
influencing, Sisi Yemmie admitted that smaller brands should be given
significant discounts to aid their growth while she also expressed reservations
over outrightly free jobs.
Tomike Adeoye helmed the panel
on ‘Unleashing The Power Of Lifestyle in Social Media Campaigns’. It featured
Mimi Onalaja, Ozinna Anumudu, and Timini Egbuson.
The trio talked extensively about
bringing authenticity into lifestyle influencing while Anumudu pointed out the
difference between organic and curated lifestyles on social media.
Ezugwu Chukwudi moderated the
fiery session on ‘Can Social Media Control Political Narratives?’, with Toyosi
Akerele-Ogunsiji, Ferdy Adimefe and Farouq Abbas serving as the panelists.
All three panel members
agreed that there is only so much change that can be made through social media.
Akerele-Ogunsiji said social
media, for the Nigerian youth, is overrated, adding that “as long as our
people are poor and uneducated, social media will not drive any political
Adimefe, on the other hand,
noted that “social media can actually shape narratives but it takes more
than social media to change a nation” while Abbas lamented that “we
are not using social media very well”.
The last session, led by
Olayemi Ogunwole (Honeypot), featured contributions from Tolu ‘Toolz’ Oniru-Demuren,
Mercy Johnson and Dotun. They spoke on the theme, ‘Creating Additional Value
Using Social Media’.
The conference, which is the brainchild of Olufemi Oguntamu, is designed as a platform to help brands and individuals harness the benefits of social media. Oguntamu is a social media professional and founder of Penzaarville.