Udeme advocates for performance with professionalism

By Felicia Nwosu

Iconic professional in the Nigerian marketing and advertising industry and Group Managing Director of SO&U Limited, Mr Udeme Ufot OFR, has challenged creative advertising agencies in the Integrated Marketing Communications space on the need to adopt a more professional approach when delivering high value for clients’ businesses .

Stating this in an interview with MARKETING EDGE ON TV, Udeme Ufot, a former Chairman of Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria (APCON), explained that the marketing communication landscape is rapidly evolving, requiring agencies to be adaptable, innovative, and deeply connected to both brands and consumers.

The SO&U Group Managing Director affirmed that professionalism, strategic thinking, and willingness to embrace change are essential for navigating the dynamic environment, observing that, “as the industry continues to transform, only those who can effectively integrate technology, respect cultural values, and leverage opportunities for collaboration will thrive.”

In his words, “Today, we have a world without media borders where marketers can engage with consumers from anywhere. What I see is that it is now a world where you must have very dynamic practitioners, where you need to have very smart people, exposed educators, who are prepared to embrace technology to optimize the performance of their brands, optimize the performance of their communication activities. What the world needs today is a convergence between digital and traditional.”

According to him, the marketing communication landscape has been significantly transformed by technological advancements and the convergence of traditional and digital media and so requires practitioners who are dynamic, tech-savvy, and capable of integrating innovative strategies into their work, adding that agencies must adapt to these changes, recognizing that a purely digital or traditional approach is no longer sufficient.

The veteran creative professional said that, with an abundance of information available, safe and conventional advertising no longer stands out, that creativity in advertising must be both professional and respectful of cultural values, ensuring that communication is tailored to different societal norms and sensibilities..

“In this new era, agencies must be close to both the brands they represent and the consumers they target. This intimate understanding allows for the creation of meaningful connections between brands and consumers, resulting in numerous opportunities for engagement. However, the marketing environment has shifted, and with tighter budgets and a demand for accountability, agencies must focus on strategies that deliver the most efficient use of resources.”

Giving his view on the future of merger and acquisition, he noted that mergers and acquisitions in the marketing sector could lead to stronger, more capable agencies. He however maintained that this requires overcoming personal egos and the desire for individual ownership.

“The willingness to merge strengths, such as combining creative excellence with strategic expertise, could propel the industry forward. Unfortunately, a strong sense of ownership often hinders such collaborations, particularly in markets where business success is tightly linked to personal identity.”


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