The success of Nigeria’s ecommerce sector is something all citizens are proud of, especially the gallant strides of Sim Shagaya-led Konga.com and Jumia Nigeria. After conquering Lagos and other selected cities, the attention of both companies seems to be on Ibadan.
Prior to this time, both companies didn’t have strong physical presence in Ibadan but it is worthy to note that they do now. They are both actively and aggressively carrying out aggressive marketing campaigns in Ibadan and they using all available mediums they know to create awareness.
If you go from Mokola to Dugbe on your way to Heritage Mall, you will definitely see Konga.com’s billboard at the bridge located at Queen Cinema. Instead of going to Dugbe, you may decide to go the other way which is Mokola to the University of Ibadan. Along this road alone you would see at least 3 billboards belonging to Jumia.The later is also running radio ads on Splash FM.
I spoke to Jumia Nigeria’s Head of Offline Marketing, Afam Anyika, on this development and he told me Ibadan is very important to Jumia and the company is seeing steady increase in the number of customers in Ibadan.
He further explained what they are doing in Ibadan. According to him, they are currently educating members of the public and enhancing customer experience.
“We have always been interested in all regions of Nigeria. We are currently running a vigorous marketing campaign which should have reflected in various parts of Nigeria. Ibadan is very important to us because we see rising number in our customer base there. For now we are committed to educating and enhancing our customer experience in such areas,” Anyika told IBPulse.
Last year, we also spoke on Jumia Nigeria’s plans for Ibadan. Some months ago I spoke to Nicola Martin, Jumia Nigeria’s co-chief executive officer (CEO) at the company’s warehouse in Ikeja Lagos. We spoke extensively on the company’s operations outside Lagos and especially in Ibadan and he told me they will be rolling out services such as pay-on-delivery nationwide.
Konga also has similar plans I gathered.
But to get more people in Ibadan to develop interest in buying stuffs online, the ecommerce platforms need to redesign their publicity and marketing strategies in such a way that would reflect they really understand Ibadan people. In other words, you cannot expect people to run to your platform just because you are erecting billboards everywhere and Splash FM is airing your ads around 10am.
Get your team down here and talk to those that know the city and its people inside out and we will advise you on what to do. Take the timing of Jumia’s radio ads for instance. It cannot reach as many people as they would have loved to. So I will give all the ecommerce platforms a secret to successful radio ads – make your jingle in Yoruba and request for a slot on Splash FM’s popular Yoruba news programme dubbed Tifun Tedo.
The billboards are oddly placed to. There are cheaper and better locations and mediums in the city that would get people’s attention. Seek them out or call me for advise.
MallforAfrica appears to be the most serious ecommerce platform that is also interested in the Ibadan market. The company has an office at Cocoa Mall and once in a while, I think weekly, they bring a DJ to the space in front of Shoprite and FoodCo and they try to get mall visitors‘ attention.
For MallforAfrica, I expect them to be more aggressive and innovative in their strategies for Ibadan. You cannot just put white t-shirts and jeans on beautiful ladies within the mall and expect people to come running. There are so many strategies they could deploy one of which is to get reps in the various schools to encourage students to order original stuffs from abroad. Also, there are small entrepreneurs in Ibadan that riskily import products they could easily order through the platform. Reaching out to them would be highly successful. Let’s talk for further advice.
Ibadan as far as I’m concerned is the real deal and an untapped market for any ecommerce platform that is more aggressive but most importantly, is well localised and adapted to the unique features of Ibadan and characters of the people.
The Oracle has spoken. lol