On the second season of the iMarket Podcast, we’re going to navigate the world of Digital Marketing by understanding what opportunities being connected to the internet presents. Our hosts this season are at the top positions in marketing at Safaricom PLC; Carolyne Kendi, the Head of Segment Marketing and Paula Kerre, the Marketing and Product Performance Manager- Mobile Data.
On the premiere episode, the ladies are joined by Vusi Thembekwayo. He’s a venture capitalist, a bestselling author, a renowned entrepreneur and a global business speaker who will discuss Digital Marketing and the Transformative Power of being connected to the internet.
Lessons Learned in Vusi’s Digital Journey:
Build Your Brand
Vusi.co.za was a 3-page website back in 2006, his personal and brand growth has happened transparently online since then. Today, the youth have found themselves in a world where they are called “Digital Natives” and while Vusi started with very simplistic webpages to get his business online, all it takes is a quick Google search or app download, to get things going.
It’s very important to give yourself time to mature and grow within these spaces because it may seem that things work fast, but you still have to build a brand and a name for yourself over time.
Internet Connectivity Transforms Businesses
“80% of my work and business is clients who have interacted with my brand online”, Vusi shared. It’s like thanks to the internet, people get the chance to know you before they really know you in person. It makes you second guess if you’ve actually met because people interact with your content online. Thanks to the gift of being online, you build a community and can connect with people from all parts of the world.
What you say online can resonate so deeply with someone so the best thing you can be is the only thing you can be. Yourself.
A lot of us like to get familiar with where we are and how we’re doing things because we know who we are in a niche market. Online influencers make this mistake…being so deeply localised that they don’t educate themselves with other parts of the world. The only way to grow is to understand how to be relevant across different spaces by making sure you understand the people in those spaces.
Vusi, like everyone else, has had several failures but has managed to use those failures as opportunities to pivot. Imagine the pivot, a change in your business or brand? When you make the decision to pivot, you recognise that you can create broader appeal. It’s not easy, but sometimes it’s necessary.
Vusi’s parting shots:
- We have our second wind. Africans are living all over the world and we’re building our own continent and our own industries in our own homes, all connected by an http address. We need to leverage it because it won’t last forever.
- The most important currency we have today is belief. We have to believe in ourselves. “We Africans” need to believe in “We Africans”. Walk into a local store and purchase something, made by your own people, and believe that the power of that product is as powerful as what you would purchase in Italy.
- The rest of the World can see our potential. We need to see it too. We need to believe in our potential to be what we are capable of being. We need to love ourselves as Africans.