Marketing and Brand Communications would not get back to where they were any time soon – Rinet boss

Mr. Fillius Osubor rpa, FIMC, CMC, is the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Rinet Limited, a leading advertising and digital services agency in Nigeria.

In this exclusive interview with MARKETING EDGE,the Federal Polytechnic Auchi – Edo State (Higher National Diploma (HND) in Graphic Arts) and Lagos State University, LASU (Masters Degree in Business Administration (MBA) in Marketing)graduate, brings his over twenty-five years cognate experience in the advertising business to bear on his review of the current state and future outlook of the Nigerian advertising industry.

We’d like you to share with us how your agency has been steadily riding the storm of the COVID-19 pandemic.

For Rinet Limited, riding the storms of the Covid–19 pandemic has been through God’s grace. One thing we have adopted in our agency is that we always commit all our plans to God, particularly every Monday morning when we gather together to appraise the previous week’s activities and marshal out the weeks’ tasks.

Pandemic or no pandemic, we have moved on and our key staff have consistently attended to all briefs, met with clients’ demands and expectations to date.

What has it been like?

It has been pretty good for us. All salaries being paid in full and as when due even all through the pandemic.

What new definitions have the COVID-19 pandemic given to integrated marketing communications (the professions and the businesses) in Nigeria?

 Well, The Covid–19 pandemic has distracted and, in some cases, disrupted the operations of many of us in the integrated marketing communications industry in one way or the other.

You know, once there is a lull or financial downturn in any industry, establishment or business organization and there is a dire need to restructure and prune expenditure, the management or the Team would always first start by slashing the marketing budget or that of advertising. This has a way of sending jitters through the spines of the agencies that did not foresee it or plan rescue measures.

How are Nigerian IMC agencies adapting to the “new normal”?

Different agencies have adopted different strategies to adapt to the new normal and remain relevant in the marketing communications sphere. There have not been clear mergers or acquisitions. Rather, most agencies have adopted their core areas of strength and specialization. Some others have picked up new roles either within the industry’s circle of operations or even diverting to other areas of interest which are equally profitable.

What is your assessment of and forecasts for the IMC industry, in general, in 2021?

The IMC industry has been hit by the pandemic and I am not sure that the usual full activities of marketing and brand communications would even get back to what it was. Let me give you a clear example.Many years back, you would find an organization plan out an Initial Public Offer (IPO), approve for an agency to install imposing unipoles and other Out–of-Home structures in all states and major cities across the country. Newspaper adverts (wrap around) covering both front and back of most major Newspapers, TV and Radio jingles,renting the air across every nook and cranny of the nation (Pan Nigeria),etc. Today, Digital marketing rules and is the destination NEXT.

What are your agency’s strategic offerings to your clients this year as a force behind them?

Rinet Limited has strategically adopted the various windows and vehicles of creativity and communications. Staff have been trained and retrained in the various aspects of our businesses and they can multitask. Our ideas creation and prompt delivery of their briefs and tasks stand us out.

What is your agency doing to up the ante in its operations and deliverables this year?

We have strengthened our digital marketing arm – RINET Digifix to contend with the present-day demands of marketing communication and they are already growing testimonials. Again, paying a very keen premium to little details in all our production and brand activation has given us some mileage.

How is your agency positioning itself for the future of the industry?

As long as there is life, we will continue to improve on our services to our clients as they would always be our testimonials to competition any day. We have equally learnt to sustain the relationships we have, whilst building on fresh ones.

What is unique about Rinet Limited?

The unique feature of Rinet Limited is found in the disposition of both past and present staff as we not only care but continue to improve on our reward system.

Who is Fillius Osubor?

Fillius Osubor is just one simple but dogged fighter with a blend of choleric and sanguine personality. A product of the Federal Polytechnic, Auchi Edo State and the Lagos State University, Lagos Nigeria.He has a Higher National Diploma in Graphic Arts and a Master Degree in Business Administration (MBA) in Marketing. He was a Group Head in Casers Advertising, now DDB many years back before he began his stint in Rinet Limited where he calls the shot. A full member of the advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria (APCON), he is a Fellow of the Institute of Management Consultants and a Chartered Management Consultant.Finally, he is a Senator of Junior Chamber International, St. Louise Mousurri, United Statesand a member of the Miami Dade Chamber of Commerce in Florida.


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