Bluebird Treats every Client as if  It’s the only one–Ebatamehi

Can you give us an insight into the yearly growth and experience of the agency?

I would rather not talk on the agency’s billing profile in the last few years. One thing I can tell you is that many agencies will not answer that question. Even those that will answer will not tell you the truth. For a few reasons; if you give your exact figure, tax people would say you have been making so much money hence, they would start billing you more. If also you did poorly, people would say you are not doing well. And again, most advertising companies are privately owned. Thus, they are not under obligation to disclose it.

As an entrepreneur and a professional, to what extent do you consider advertising agencies in their various sub-sectors as a force behind brands?

Yes, advertising agencies are formidable parts of the branding effort in the sense that they occupy a prime position in helping brands communicate their essence, values and offerings. I must also acknowledge that it’s not the agencies alone that build brands; it’s a co-creation between the client and the agency because a whole lot goes into brand building. The brand needs to be conceptualised, then designed and vetted. It’s when the brand is available that agencies come in to help communicate the brand. The agency job will now start from the brand positioning statement, the differentiating point of the brand and then packaging of the brand. Thus, agencies’ strong area is to draw a brand communication plan over the years and help to communicate the brand. This is because there’s need to be discipline in the way you communicate your brand. There’s need for consistency because if a brand is not consistent in the way it communicates itself, tendencies are that there would be some distortions along the line and the brand would stand for nothing. You need to have a brand that when you mention its name, a particular image starts coming to your mind because of what the brand has communicated over the years.

I think as agencies, we are better placed to do that because the exposure and training of the agency personnel put them in a better position to do that. And when you talk of brands these days, there are the tangible and intangible. Even ideas can be branded. That a particular country is a tourist destination is an idea. Thus branding and brand communication encompass a whole lot.

During recession as currently obtained in Nigeria, what can agencies do to exert themselves more as forces behind the brand?

In a recession, what happens is that everybody tries to cut down cost and to innovate. Today, an average Nigerian consumer is stressed and pressurised in the sense that the disposable income is dwindling, costs of things are on the rise and in terms of take home, he’s not even taking home any longer. Because of that, he tends to prioritise and be very reasonable on what he spends his money. When he’s exposed to any communication, the first thing you will get from him is scepticism. Thus, you need someone who is skilled and understands communication to help you navigate and get your message across and get the right result because if it’s not properly communicated with apt consumer insight, you can’t get the consumer to your side. Therefore, I think that more than ever before, especially during this recession, clients need agencies to help communicate their brands because agencies are set up to understand the consumer. Als



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