Africa’s Reputation: Stakeholders Chart Ways On How ‘Mediatainment’ Can Change The Narrative
By Azeez Disu
With the negative narrative of Africa on the spotlight, stakeholders at the 2018 edition of Innovention Series have pointed that positive storytelling, deployment of branding techniques, technology and media deployment will help reposition Nigeria and the continent.
The stakeholders from Entertainment, Media and Integrated Marketing Communications made the disclosure at the 7th Innovention Series themed: “Building Africa’s Reputation through Mediatainment.”
Innovention Series is a yearly event organized by Verdant Zeal Marketing Communications Group and this year’s programme was held yesterday in Lagos.
Mediatainment is all about Media and Entertainment and globally the two have been used as valuable tools to shape reputation.
Speaking on the negative narrative about Africa, Dr. Tunji Olugbodi, GMD, Verdant Zeal said, “About two decades ago, Africa had an ignoble past as a continent ridden with corruption and it was renowned for poverty, human rights violations amongst others. However, the narrative has started changing as Africa is currently credited with many global creative works, which have been amplified through media exposure and the internet. The creative industry has changed the perspective about Africa.
“This evolution has changed the ecosystem within the industry and it has brought fortune to youngsters; offsetting monopolies and creating a new distribution model. As it is said, ‘Content is King’ in this dispensation. With this development, we all have to migrate to the new era and one of the ways is by learning from the Colossus.”
In the same vein, the Keynote Speaker of the event, Bolanle Austen Peters, Founder/CEO, Terra Kulture said Nigeria, for instance, has not fully taken advantage of its festivals, artefacts and other historic sites that can be tourist attractions and income earner for the country. She urged Nigerians to patronise made in Nigerian clothes, promote the rich cultural heritage of the country and show to the world how the country is endowed.
She added that Nigerians are naturally talented and entertaining people and the successes achieved by the country’s music and movies industry worldwide attest to that. For the country to take it to the next level she said the deployment of technology and media are also essential.
Bisoye Fagade, CEO, Sodium Brand Solutions, on his part stated that building Africa’s Reputation through Mediatainment, requires a strategic thinking, investment in equipment and investing in the country, adding that huge investment in media and technology will help change the narrative about Nigeria and Africa as a whole.
Similarly, Ramsey Nouah, CEO, Ramsey Films and Nollywood Actor called for an enabling environment for the movie industry to thrive in terms of fund support and other ease of doing business policies.
In addition, Atunyota Akpobome also known as Alibaba, Nigerian Stand-Up Comedian and actor urged the government and the whole country to join the fight against Piracy, as that is one of the biggest threat to the growth of the entertainment industry.
Meanwhile, Ade Adefeko, Vice President, Corporate & Government Relations, OLAM Nigeria urged movies and media practitioners to tell more of positive stories than negatives, explaining that they are also good things happening in the country and such stories should be told.
The Innovention Series was inaugurated in March 2012 as part of Verdant Zeal’s 5th-anniversary celebration as a thought-leadership platform and Corporate Social Responsibility event to examine the development options for Africa and to discuss the Nigerian project. It is established on the principles of Strategic thinking, Entrepreneurial Initiatives, Technological Inventions and Original thinking.