L-R: Mrs Joan Ihekwaba, ADVAN 1st Vice President; Mr. Franco Mario Maggi, Marketing Director Nigerian Breweries and Chairperson ADVAN Awards 2016; David Okeme, ADVAN President; Mr Osamede Uwubanmwen, ADVAN Ex-officio, and Ediri Ose-Ediale, ADVAN Executive Secretary, when ADVAN Executives paid a courtesy visit to Nigeria Breweries Plc recently.
The umbrella body for all advertisers in Nigeria, The Advertisers Association of Nigeria (ADVAN) is poised to scale up its goal of growing Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs) in Nigeria with the introduction and expansion of some categories of this year’s ADVAN marketing excellence awards.
Commentators have identified one of the new categories – Marketing on a Shoestring – with a strong capacity to appeal to serious –minded SMEs. This explains why ADVAN had specifically invited SMEs to submit entries for this special category that focuses on the maximisation of limited budget in achieving impact and measurable result.
Commenting on ADVAN’s current focus on SMEs, ADVAN’s President, David Okeme explained that the decision to open the elite platform to SMEs was informed by lessons learnt during the World Federation of Advertisers global conference in Malaysia where bodies like ADVAN were enjoined to open a second tier membership to accommodate small scale businesses.
Okeme believes that relating with existing ADVAN members would be of immense benefits to SMEs as they would be interacting with seasoned analysts and experts who can conveniently dissect key marketing issues, insights and emerging consumer engagement trends. Okeme also believes that SMEs are veritable tools that can help Nigeria move out of her current recession.
Also commenting on the tilt towards SMEs by ADVAN, Emmanuel Young, a member of Lagos Chambers of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) and keen commentator on Marketing issues feels there are other ADVAN Awards categories that should interest small and medium scale organizations. According to Young, categories like Experiential Marketing, Innovation, Digital/Social Media Marketing and Future Leader of Marketing Awards can equally throw up SMEs that can demonstrate verifiable success in total marketing if they are bold enough to submit entries.
Speaking in details about the relevance of SMEs, Young further explained that although global corporations tend to dominate the business pages, a healthy small business sector is essential to a prosperous economy. His words: “SMEs play increasingly important roles in ensuring that economic growth is sustainable. The small business sector makes a huge contribution on multiple fronts: from employing a diverse workforce and engaging with their local communities, through to bringing jobs to employment black-spots. It is highly commendable that ADVAN is trying to motivate growth in this segment. It is equally commendation that successful ADVAN Award entries by SMEs this year can give them a direct chance to become ADVAN Member with all the concomitant benefits”.
The ADVAN Awards is undoubtedly one of the most prestigious and respected awards in the Nigerian marketing community. This year’s Awards nite, which is its sixth edition, is billed to take place at the prestigious MUSON centre, Onikan, Lagos on October 29, 2016.
Just like previous editions, the 2016 award is structured for the express purpose of highlighting the fundamental position marketing occupies in business and public sectors, besides celebrating outstanding marketing achievements across a range of industries. According to David Okeme, ADVAN’s President, this award is part of ADVAN’s greater design to establish the marketing profession on a sustainable path to greatness. Okeme also feels this achievement could really be consolidated this year with the ADVAN Awards for Marketing Excellence now endorsed by the World Federation of Advertisers (WFA).
Okeme also stated that the Awards Committee tasked with mandate of organizing a world class event is populated by seasoned marketing professionals led by the Marketing Director of Nigerian Breweries Plc, Franco Maria Maggi, who would also serve as Chairman of the 2016 ADVAN Awards.
The ADVAN President also spoke on the on-going judging process handled by the Panel of Judges led by Ikechi Odigbo, Managing Director DDB Lagos and Vice President Association of Advertising Agencies of Nigeria (AAAN). He revealed that the team is presently taking pains to page through a deluge of entries that have come in since the process remains one of the most valuable assets of the Awards.