NIMN panics over membership decline, plans phoney programmes to hoodwink public

Apparently worried over its dwindling membership and general disinterest of members in its activities, the National Institute of Marketing of Nigeria (NIMN) has hurriedly collated and unveiled a plethora of phoney marketing activities aimed at hood – winking unsuspecting members of the public.

It will be recalled that the marketing body, set up by the Act of parliament in 2003 has remained redundant in organising regular training programmes, workshops and seminars for the Nigerian marketing community yawning for capacity and skilled marketing professionals.

Rather than depend on the institute for capacity building, most multinationals and marketing companies have resorted to organising frequent in-house marketing training programmes and workshops for their teeming employees some of whom are also registered members of Chartered Institute of Marketing, in United Kingdom.

At an emergency press conference organised by the Institute recently, President of the troubled institute, Mr Idy Enang unfolded a plethora of unrealistic programmes which he claimed the institute would soon embark upon. These are activities the institute has ignored in the last two and half years of Enang in the saddle.

Specifically, Enang told newsmen that NIMN will from next year implement various learning and development initiatives for corporate members.
His words: ” The learning and networking initiatives will include bootcamps, masterclasses and executive round tables”.

The President who is on his second term tenure disclosed that ” the institute has equally formed strategic partnerships with some groups and related organisations.

These partnership, NIMN hinted ,” will enable us to tap into the wealth of expertise and resources while further enriching members by allowing them to stay ahead in an ever – evolving marketing landscape.

The institute’s face – saving efforts, industry sources say may not be unconnected with the face- off the institute had with MARKETING EDGE magazine, an authoritative industry news platform that challenged the institute over its failings on its statutory roles and duties.

The magazine’s report had provoked critical public scrutiny of NIMN by many younger generation marketing practitioners who are setting the pace in their various organisations.

More particularly scathing are the criticisms by two up- wardly mobile young marketing professionals, Mr Ladi Ogunseye and George Ogunsanmi ( not his real names). In their opinion polls published by MARKETING EDGE, Ladi Ogunseye who wrote from Lagos said in his critique, “On Saturday, the 25th of November, 2023, I conducted a poll on my X (formerly Twitter) account with the intent to find out the awareness level of the NIMN among young marketing professionals. I found out that only 20% of them have heard of NIMN before and out of this number, 85% do not actually know what they do while 15% confuse them for another professional body.”

What’s more, young and curious Ogunseye, who took it upon himself to read the NIMN Act, found to his utmost consternation that it was created in 2003 and hasn’t been updated.
“I’ve always opined that this country is the way it is because we’ve very archaic laws that are at best redundant. This NIMN Act was created in 2003 and, 20 years later, has not been updated to be in tandem with modern realities.

“For context, the CIM Constitution was last updated in 2016. This is why NIMN has struggled to do anything with the regulation of the marketing practice in Nigeria. To re-echo the popular mantra, NIMN is a group of old people who don’t want young people to grow nor care to listen to young people,” he added.

Also, Ogunsanmi, a young member of NIMN said that, while NIMN may be a regulatory body for marketers in Nigeria, its relevance in delivering value to new generation practitioners has diminished over the years.

In his words, “Since I became a member of NIMN about 5 years ago I haven’t renewed my membership because there is no perceived value. However, it doesn’t take away the fact that they are still a regulatory body.

“The nature of the marketing profession in Nigeria has evolved beyond the confines of traditional associations. Today, individuals can excel in their field without being members of NIMN, or any association for that matter. career success is not contingent on association membership,” he said.
While opining that the Nigerian professional community generally loves control more than influence, exertion of power rather than being solution-oriented, the young marketing professional noted that NIMN, rather than deliver on its corporate and institutional mandate, is busy creating problems where there are none, citing the MARKETING EDGE example.

Similarly, a marketing professional who works with an FMCG group, Mr. Debola Awosepe was not excited about being associated with NIMN claiming that the institute which is now being controlled by a ‘two man cabal’ on its council is jinxed. Asked to explain what he meant by being jinxed, he said the institute is always involved in one crisis or the other, noting that no serious professional would want to associate with a body that offers no value beyond begging members for yearly subscription and not creating anything of value to members. Awosepe said he was already contented with the values he gets from CIM of UK where he belongs as a chartered marketer. Besides, he said as long as his employers do not insist on NIMN to determine his skills and competence, he said he does not see the need to jump on the boat of a group without a focus.


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