Communicating The Nigerian Entertainment Industry To The World

Deji Garuba MCPR

The Nigerian entertainment industry has continued to grow steadily in the last decade and according to a report by PricewaterhouseCoopers the Nigerian entertainment and media market revenue, which rose to $3.6 billion in 2016 would increase at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 12.2 per cent to $6.4 billion in 2021. This implies that the sector can indeed contribute significantly to the GDP of Nigeria. Over the years the brand communication of the sector has not been strategically and adequately done to promote the industry. There has never been a show of intent in creating a communication architecture for the industry. Every single stakeholder must see that there is a need for the sector to deliberately find its voice and tone to reach the world.

In both Music and movies, the sector has witness tremendous growth in the last decade, with the likes of Wizkid, Tiwa Savage, Davido and Burna Boy selling out huge venues at home and across the world. A whole lot of artistes from Nigeria are also enjoying massive streaming and viewing numbers on various digital platforms. Nollywood has also been on a steady rise in the face of huge production challenges. This last decade has seen the entrance of new movie makers in the sector whose works has also raised the bar in quality of these movies and the corresponding returns are on a vertical direction. The box office successes of Ayo Makun’s Guinness record breaking ‘’30 days in Atlanta” and Mo Abudu’s ‘’The Wedding Party 1 and 2” are an attestation of the growth. Their project racked over 500 million naira in box office. The need to adequately communicate these successes, gains and tell our own story to the rest of the world cannot be over emphasized.

There is an urgent need for a proper brand communication for the Nigeria entertainment industry so as to sustain and improve the current gains in the sector. A total overhaul of the current industry practices to allow professionalism in the area of branding and communications will not only guarantee the desired exposure, it will also catalyze rapid growth in the entertainment industry in Nigeria. Industry players must now begin to hire brand managers and publicist to manage their communications as obtainable in other climes. This will open up a healthy competitive space in the industry that will lead to a robust brand identity for the industry.

When the Nigerian entertainment industry is properly communicated to the world, it will encourage local, foreign investors and other interested players to came in and participate. No investor wants to risk their capital in venture that isn’t clearly communicated.  It is therefore key for industry players to adapt global entertainment brand communication best practices in every single project so as to reap from the inert potentials in the Nigerian entertainment industry.

It is also very important to note the interesting twist that the rise of digital and technology brings to the sector. Digital platforms have significantly changed the way we communicate and the flow of information.  The world as we know it today has become more connected that ever, the entertainment industry in Nigeria must take full advantage of these platforms in telling its own story to the world. With the billions of people signed up to various social media platforms across the globe daily it is definitely the fastest way to change the current narrative of our industry.

Without sounding like a broken record, government must sincerely be involved by creating enabling conditions and implementing policies for the industry to thrive. The sector can greatly contribute to the positive image of the country.  It is a known fact that the industry has created loads of jobs for young people and still has the capacity to create even more. Finally we must learn to keep records and data as this will form part of the key messaging of the Nigerian entertainment industry.

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