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Mastering digital-age marketing communications skills

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By Goke Ilesanmi

The concept of effective communication, whether Marketing Communications and/or Corporate Communication, has changed in scope and dynamics in this digital age with the multiplicity of technological devices and social media platforms. The world is now a global village with many business and career opportunities as well as global threats of competition. We need to be able to communicate well to overcome the challenges and stay ahead of competition.

Marketing Communications refers to the various media, means and/or tools adopted by corporate organisations to convey messages about their products, services and/or brands either directly or indirectly to (prospective) customers with the intention to persuade them to buy. Marketers employ marketing communications tools to create brand awareness among potential customers, which means some image of the brand gets created in their minds thus helping them to make the buying decision.

Marketing Communications uses the following tools collectively referred to as Marketing Communication Mix or Promotion Mix:

  1. Personal selling: This is the traditional method of marketing communication where the salesmen approach the prospective customers directly and inform them about the goods and services they are dealing in.
  2. Public relations and publicity: Public relations is a strategic communication process of building mutually beneficial relationships between organisations and their publics. Public relations is all about reputation-building. It is used to gain trust and understanding between an organisation and its various publics. Organisations achieve effective public relations and publicity through effective relationship with the media by sending press releases on their achievements and/or activities to them for free publication.
  3. Direct marketing: This is done through emails, letters, etc., to communicate directly with the prospective customers without involving any third party in between.
  4. Advertising: It is an indirect, paid method used by the firms to inform (prospective) customers about their goods and services via television, radio, print media, etc.
  5. Sales promotion: This includes the several short-term incentives to persuade the customers to initiate the purchase of the goods and services. This promotion technique helps in retaining the existing customers and attracting the new ones with additional benefits. This promotion technique includes rebates, discounts, paybacks, Buy-one-get-one-free scheme, coupons, etc., are some of the sales promotion tools.
  6. Events and experiences or corporate social responsibility: Organisations employ this technique by sponsoring non-profit or community events, sports, entertainment, etc. The essence is to reinforce their brand image in the minds of existing customers, attract new customers and create long-term relationships with them. The name of an organisation sponsoring an event can be seen on the playground boundaries, player’s jerseys, trophies, awards, etc.
  7. Word-of-mouth marketing: It is one of the most widely used methods of marketing communication. Here, satisfied customers share their experiences with their peers and friends about the goods and services they bought recently. This method is very crucial for the firms because the image of the brand depends on what customers feel about the brand and what message they convey to others.

Marketing communications versus corporate communication

It is noteworthy that both Marketing Communications and Corporate Communication use these communication tools with a different approach but towards the same end. The main difference between Corporate Communication and Marketing Communications is the target audience. Corporate Communication is targeted towards all stakeholders of an organisation, such as the customers, employees, media, investors, etc. Marketing communications is specifically targeted towards consumers of goods and services.

While Marketing Communications focuses on brand or product or service positioning to improve sales and boost profitability, Corporate Communication traditionally focuses on corporate branding. Corporate branding is about positioning an organisation itself as a brand. That is, creating massive awareness about its mission, vision, values, achievements, etc.

Research report: A recent report by McKinsey & Company shows that only 13 per cent of customers remained loyal to a brand in 2017. So, 87 per cent considered other brands while 58 per cent switched to a new one. Reasons for this were poor marketing communications and ineffective corporate communication.

Digital marketing communications

Today, corporate organisations must be versatile in digital (marketing) communications skills to succeed unlike what had obtained before the advent of digital or new media in those days. Therefore, organisations that want to succeed in marketing must effectively and innovatively apply all the marketing communications tools such as:

  • Digital Advertising
  • Digital Sales Promotion (through the corporate website, etc.)
  • Digital Public Relations and Publicity (through both digital news and social media)
  • Direct Marketing (through Email, WhatsApp, etc.)
  • Interactive Marketing (where customers interact with companies online and have their requests met as done by Amazon, etc.)
  • Digital Personal Selling (through platforms such as Skype, Slack, Google Hangouts and FaceTime, Zoom, etc.)
  • Word-of-Mouth Marketing also called Digital Influencer Marketing where a brand inspires or compensates influencers (e.g. celebrities, content creators, customer advocates and employees) to get the word out on their behalf.

To be continued

PS: For those making inquiries about our CV/Profile Writing and Speech Writing Services; Political Persuasion and Presentation Course; General Public Speaking and Business Presentation Course; Professional Writing Course, etc., please visit the website indicated on this page for details.

GOKE ILESANMI (FIIM, FIMC, CMC), CEO of Gokmar Communication Consulting, is an International Platinum Columnist, Professional Public Speaker, Career Mgt Coach and Certified Mgt Consultant. He is also a Book Reviewer, Biographer and Editorial Consultant. Tel: 08056030424; 08055068773; 08187499425

Email: [email protected]

Website: www.gokeilesanmi.com.ng

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How I collected $3m cash for Emefiele – CBN employee

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A Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) employee, Mr Monday Osazuwa, on Friday told an Ikeja Special Offences Court how the former apex bank governor, Godwin Emefiele, on different occasions, directed him to collect three million dollars cash in tranches.

Osasuwa, while being led in evidence by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) counsel, Mr Rotimi Oyedepo (SAN), said he was a dispatch rider in Zenith Bank in 2001 before he joined the CBN in 2014.
Osasuwa said he joined the apex bank as a senior supervisor in 2014.

He said Emefiele was the Managing Director of Zenith Bank Plc while he was working as a dispatch rider in the bank.
The witness said he knew Emefiele, who was his boss, while in Zenith Bank and that he later joined him at the CBN.
The witness said he was later appointed  as a senior supervisor (full time) in recording and filing of documents while working in the CBN governor’s office in Lagos.

“I was still working in the CBN governor’s office while I was appointed as a full staff member and we usually communicated through Whatsapp and email.

“I function as a senior supervisor, recording  and filing with other official roles.

“I recall that in 2020, when he was outside Lagos, he called me that he would give me a number that a man had something I should collect from him and that the man would give me the number of another person.

“When I got to the man’s office, I was given an envelope. I  counted the money and the man said I should give it to my boss,” he said.

The witness further told the court that the first defendant used to collect money by himself  anytime he was in Lagos but anytime the defendant was not around, he would tell him to give the money to the second defendant.
Osazuwa added that Emefiele sent him to MINL Ltd. when he was with Zenith Bank.

“This company is situated at Isolo, the first defendant did send me to collect cheques from the company from Mr Monday and when I collected the cheque from Mr Monday, I would give it back to Emefiele and he would lodge the money into Dumies Oil and Gas.

According to him, Emefiele’s co-defendant, Henry Isioma-Omoile, lived in the residence of the former CBN governor.

He stated that when he collected money for his boss, he would take it to his residence at Iru Close, Ikoyi.
“Whenever I received the money and take it to my boss’s residence, Mr Emefiele would tell me to give it to the second defendant whenever he was not at home.

“I did not keep a record of transactions because the instruction he gave me was that I should collect the money and bring the money to his house.

“The highest amount I collected was one million dollars all in cash and some weeks later, the businessman also called me to collect $850,000, $750,000 and $400,000 cash in tranches.

“I have never been rewarded, paid or given anything because I am doing it out of faithfulness and he knows it but he has never for once said, ‘take this’,” he said.

Under cross-examination by the defence counsel, Mr Abdulakeem Labi-Lawal, the witness confirmed  to the court that he had been working with the defendant since 2002.

According to the witness, Emefiele passed instructions to him through the second defendant and that he had been collecting cheques for Dumies Oil and Gas.

He, however, told the court when he was made to confront the second defendant during investigation but the second  defendant failed to admit it.

“I started collecting cheques for Dumies Oil and Gas when I was in Zenith Bank.

“I cannot calculate the exact year I have been collecting the cheques but it all started when the first defendant was the Managing Director at Zenith Bank and I was working at Zenith Bank,” he said.

EFCC on April 8 arraigned Emefiele on 23 counts bordering on abuse of office, accepting gratifications, corrupt demand, receiving property fraudulently obtained and conferring corrupt advantage.

Emefiele’s co-defendant was arraigned on three counts bordering on acceptance of gift by agents.
The defendants, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge.

Earlier, Oshodi had declined the oral application for adjournment moved twice by the defence counsel.
The judge adjourned the case until April 29 for trial and hearing of application for closed-session.

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Anambra boat mishap: Police recover 3 more bodies

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The Police Command in Anambra, said it had recovered three more bodies from the  boat mishap that occurred on Wednesday, in Anam community, Anambra West Local Government Area of the state.

The command’s spokesperson, SP Tochukwu Ikenga, said this in a statement in Awka on Friday.

Ikenga said that the command’s Marine Police unit in Anambra recovered the remaining three bodies of the boat accident during the shooting of a movie.

He said that two of the bodies were recovered on April 11, while the last body was washed ashore by the tide early Friday.

Ikenga said that the bodies have been deposited in an undisclosed mortuary in Asaba, Delta.

He said that the President of Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN) has been notified of the recovery.

“Mr Aderemi Adeoye, Commissioner, Anambra Police Command, has urged all water commuters to be safety conscious,” he said.

He advised water commuters to avoid behaviour that might jeopardise their safety and that of others on water transit.

Adeoye assured that the command would thoroughly investigate the cause of the sad accident that claimed the lives of five actors and proffer a lasting solution.

He commended the Marine Command Unit and its Commander for their dedication to duty.

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FIRS generates N12.3 trn in 2023 – CEO

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The Chief Executive, Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS), Mr Zacch Adedeji, said that the organisation witnessed unprecedented progress in revenue collection, culminating in a remarkable achievement of N12.3 trillion in 2023.
The chief executive, who was represented by a staff of the organisation, Mrs Aisha Ribadu, said this on Friday at the FIRS special day at the ongoing 35th Enugu International Trade Fair.
Adedeji said that this success was a testament to its dedication to nurturing and empowering its workforce, and to ensuring they possessed the skills, knowledge and tools necessary to excel.
He expressed his heartfelt appreciation to the Enugu State Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (ECCIMA) for its discerning choice of theme, “Promoting Made-in-Nigeria Products for Global Competitiveness”.
The FIRS boss added that the choice of theme reflected the collective aspiration to not only dominate the African market but to assert relevance on the global stage.
“Investing in human capital is the cornerstone of sustainable development, and nations that prioritise human  development inevitably experience  enduring growth and prosperity.
“The FIRS has spearheaded transformative reforms aimed at diversifying revenue sources and enhancing the overall taxpayer experience.
 “One of such initiatives is the introduction of the Taxpromax Solutions, an innovative e-service platform designed to empower taxpayers to fulfill their obligations seamlessly from anywhere at any time,” Adedeji said.
He expressed gratitude to ECCIMA for affording the FIRS the invaluable opportunity to showcase its commitment to national development.
In a welcome address, the ECCIMA President, Mr Odeiga Jideonwo, said that the essence of the special day was to bring the business community and the general public closer to the activities and operations of the FIRS.
 Jideonwo, who was represented by the first Deputy President, Nnanyereugo Onyemelukwe, said that the FIRS should  work in tandem with other agencies of government and stakeholders in the organised private  sector.
He said that it would enable the FIRS to redefine and streamline tax administration and regime in the country.
” It will also bring about a society  wherein the rich and poor will leverage each other in contributing to the development of the society in a fair and just manner, as it affects company tax by various businesses,” he said.
 He commended the chief executive for its various innovations aimed at voluntary bringing into the FIRS database, companies in order to boost the tax network.
Jideonwo added that it would also boost revenue with the attendant grace offered in the process to those who had been evading tax payment.
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