Nigerian media need to be consistent in branding – Lekan Otufodunrin

By Ibidunni Banjoko

Lekan Otufodunrin, Managing Director of Media Career Development Network, has highlighted the need for Nigerian media organisations to be consistent in branding their platforms, while urging them to be strategic about it so that people will know exactly what they stand for over a period of time.

Expressing the above view during an exclusive interview with MARKETING EDGE, the media expert stated that media owners and practitioners assume because they are publishing or broadcasting, people already know them, and, therefore see no need for conscious, strategic branding for their business/ profession.

“In addition to advertising your platform, branding should be a continuous project. If Google, a popular global brand still advertises, what stops media businesses in Nigeria from doing same? I know some media platforms are making efforts, but how consistent are they? It’s also about trust; people need to trust the information you disseminate,” he stated.

Mr. Otufodunrin explained that trust is part of branding, adding that people are losing trust in many media organisations for continuously disseminating unverified information.

“Some traditional media outfits are trying to be digital and in that process they are committing errors because they are in hurry to share pieces of information that are yet to be verified. Any media organisation worth its salt must ensure that their content meets professional standard and people’s expectation,” he said.

Commenting on the impact of citizen journalism in dissemination of information, the media expert said: “Citizen Journalism has provided a lot of competition for traditional the media. So, the traditional media need to open up; they need to understand that they are no longer the sole gatekeeper because the gates are not as closed as before. With the use of new media, you can get information on anyone’s page and that is one thing that they have to cope with because digital is unlimited. It gives room for a lot of leverage, a lot of reach and there’s also money to make from it.”

Speaking on the challenges bedeviling the media, Mr. Otufodunrin, however, stressed the need for training so that traditional media practitioners would be able to perfect their digital skills.

He said: “Some of the challenges we have is that there are many analog people who have the media experience but who are not digitally savvy, and we have so many people who are digitally savvy, but do not understand journalism. In journalism, there are rules of engagement.

“There are no citizen doctors, there are no citizen lawyers, so also journalism is a profession; there are laws and there are ethics that need to be followed. People should not take it as liberty to just do whatever they like. Content provided on their social media handles can be reprocessed and presented as the standard information that people need to have, because there are things that you don’t share. You need to fact check pieces of information to ensure that they are correct.”


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