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Understanding the Psychology of Marketing as Regard Nigerians



Psychology of Marketing

By Kenneth Horsfall

I tell you this with a great fact Nigerians are peculiar people, Nigerians are not like every African, they are a very different breed of people. They think differently, not like every African. So, today I am going to be teaching you how to really understand the psychology of marketing when dealing with Nigerians so you can take advantage of it and sell anything to a Nigerian and he or she will buy. To begin our class, let’s define what Marketing Psychology is.

What Is Marketing Psychology

Marketing psychology attempts to understand the way that consumers think, feel, reason, and make decisions. The goal of marketing is to convince people and making a calculated emotional appeal can be just what you need to land a lasting customer.

You may be asking what is the relationship between psychology and marketing?

Marketing is building relationships between brands and consumers, which includes stoking loyalty and awareness in consumers. Psychology, on the other hand, is the study of the human mind and human behaviour.

Let’s just go further to explain how this truly works. Marketing psychology closely relates to consumer behaviour: the study of how and why we purchase goods or services. Borrowing insights from behavioural sciences, such as neuroscience and cognitive sciences, marketing psychology looks at how people’s feelings and perceptions influence their buying habits. So, now you get the point abi?

Psychological tactics that influence how Nigerian consumer’s behaviour

Good news! You don’t have to be a psychologist to stage a successful emotional appeal to your potential customers in Nigeria. Many successful marketers use these strategies to great effect. With a bit of research and experimentation – you can too.

An important component of successful marketing is understanding how and why people think and act in certain ways. All of your marketing efforts should stem from this understanding. If, for example, you’re a content marketer creating an infographic, your efforts will be far more successful if you begin with your end consumer in mind. Who are they and why should they care about your infographic? What action(s) do you want them to take as a result of the infographic? Is progress measurable?

Reverse engineering, this process can be illuminating. At this point, you may be thinking that this is all very obvious. But how well do you truly understand your customer? Are they a two-dimensional idea or a three-dimensional person? What motivates them to make a decision?

Understanding how people operate can be the difference between good marketing and great marketing.

To help you further I’m going to share with you 6 psychological tips for marketing to Nigerians

  1. Nigerians Are Very Impulsive

Have you ever been waiting in line at the grocery store only to grab a few “last minute” items before your transaction? Those items weren’t placed there on accident. It’s quite intentional and has been enabling impulse buys for decades. Flash sales in email marketing campaigns are another way this psychological marketing tactic is applied. How can you use people’s impulsive nature to satisfy their needs?

  1. A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words

Our brains can process images a whole lot faster than they can comprehend the written word. This is for good reason. Long before Harry Potter, people needed the ability to quickly assess the lay of the land in order to survive. Play into this. We live in a visual world. Spend some time pondering your use of visuals. People will form an instant impression based on visual appearance.


  1. Colour Psychology

Colours have an enormous impact on our moods and emotions – possessing the profound ability to influence our perceptions. We associate certain colours with whimsy, others with trust, and others with sensuality. Depending on what you’re selling, be aware of your use of colour. It is important to send a consistent message on all fronts. Appeal to the subconscious mind first, and logic later.

  1. The Pen Is Mightier Than The Sword

Certain words or phrases, while cliched, evoke an emotional response. Organic. Gluten-free. Certified. Testimonial. Authentic. There is a perfectly good reason that words like these are plastered all over products: it works. People continue to go for it. Think about the products and services you’re marketing and try to find the words that have the potential to elicit an emotional response. Use them when talking about your products.

  1. The Power of “Yes”

Yes, is a powerful word. It is the green light that gets you in the door. Getting people to say yes to little things before going for the win is a time-honoured sales strategy. It creates a sense of connection and agreeability. This is as popular today as ever. Many businesses use social media in this way: warm an audience up with social ads, get them to take a small action (watch a video or sign up for an email list), create trust, and convert. This whole process is a series of small agreements that gradually open the door to a sale.

  1. Nigerians love to make Decisions Emotional

The decision-making process is emotionally driven. Even people that pride themselves on being rational aren’t immune. We all make decisions based on two things: what satisfies our needs and what aligns with how we are. Marketers would be wise to try to elicit an emotional response from potential customers.

To conclude our class today on understanding the psychology of marketing to Nigerians, we will check out why will Nigerians buy your product or service.

Nigerians don’t care about you, how much success you’ve achieved or even what you have to sell.

Nigerians care about themselves first, second, third and up to infinity.

Nigerians are naturally selfish; including me, including you, that is reading this article is a Nigerian!

If you want Nigerians to buy what you have to sell, here is what you need to do;

Forget about what you want or don’t want and focus on giving them what they want and getting rid of what they don’t want!

The 40/40/20 Rule of Marketing – Here is a fact that explains why Nigerian customers will buy. The “40/40/20 rule” explains what constitutes the response for a marketing campaign.  It breaks down like this: 40% of the success of your marketing is dependent on the target audience; 40% of the success of your marketing is dependent on what you’re offering [product or service]; 20% of the success of your marketing is dependent on creativity. That’s just it.

Why will Nigerians buy your product or service? – Nigerians buy for the following reasons. Provide these reasons and the sale becomes natural.

Utility – why should I buy this? Nigerians buy because they are interested in two things. These two things they are interested in are the same two things you and I are interested in. Because all of us are only interested in the following two things: Getting rid of a PROBLEM you have and don’t want and/or Creating a RESULT that you want and don’t have.

The utility they said is the satisfaction derived from the consumption of a particular product or service. In other words, utility = satisfaction derived = value. Products or services sell not because you have bills to pay, or because you have needs to be met. In fact, if you ever hope of selling anything, you have to get ‘YOU’ out of the equation and focus on ‘THEM’. Products or services sell because your Nigerian customers want utility.

Credibility – why should I buy from you? The second reason why Nigerians will buy from you is credibility. Nigerians buy from people they trust. After a Nigerian sees the utility in what you are offering for sale, the next thing they want to see is credibility. Are you for real? Can you really deliver this utility? Are you capable of delivering on your promise? This is very crucial for making the sale.

Relevance – why should I buy NOW? I see the value in your offering, I trust your ability to deliver, but is what you are selling relevant to my current situation? I am interested in what you are offering for sale, based on a certain track record, I think I trust your brand, but how well is your solution –product/service suitable for my current needs? This is the most crucial phase of the three reasons why Nigerians buy. To successfully get over this phase, two key skills are required; The ability to question skillfully and the ability to listen carefully

To uncover the relevance of your product/service to the current needs of the customer, you’ve got to dig deep beyond the surface. Nigerians find it naturally difficult to express their deep desires until skillfully led. The more you skillfully ask questions and listen carefully and patiently to the answers, the more the customer will open up and talk to you.

Takeaway: As an entrepreneur, you are trying to sell to Nigerians the best way to do it is to create the kind of environment where the Nigerians feel comfortable expressing themselves openly and honestly. Your goal is to see things like a Nigerian, see things from their perspective and make them trust you then see how they will run to you with their money.

Kenneth Horsfall is the creative director and founder of K.S. Kennysoft Studios Production Ltd, fondly called Kennysoft STUDIOs, a Nigerian Video and Animation Production Studio. Horsfall is also the founder and lead instructor at Kennysoft Film Academy and can be reached via

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Okowa’s Financial Aid to Mission Schools



Ifeanyi Okowa Delta State

By Jerome-Mario Chijioke Utomi

The recent decision by the Governor of Delta State, Ifeanyi Okowa, to provide financial aid to 40 schools it returned to religious missions in 2011 again underscores the time-honoured belief that leaders must learn the art of management, an art of engineering and skill to absorb and mater success in their mission. As there is no hard and fast rule but involves a lot of practical wisdom and prudence in one’s functioning style and performance.

Speaking at the thanksgiving service to mark the end of the 16th Synod of Asaba Diocese, Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion), held at the Cathedral Church of St. Peter, Asaba, Okowa, who read the first lesson, congratulated the new Bishop of the diocese, the Rt. Rev. Kingsley Obuh, on his consecration and enthronement.

Acknowledging that the running of mission schools is difficult given the current economic condition of the nation, the governor commended the church for drawing his attention to the plight of the schools, especially his promise to ensure that grants were given to missions to assist them in giving a firm standing to the schools that had been returned to them. This, he explained, became necessary to assist the schools in running effectively, particularly in view of the prevailing harsh economic situation in the country.

Indeed, from the above comment by the Governor, it is evident that he is not taking success in leadership for granted or attributing the same to a function of luck and destiny but achievable through effective planning, genuine efforts and technique followed sincerely and scrupulously in their mission.

By his latest action, it is now evident that the Governor considers education as the bedrock of development. More than anything else, his promise to ensure that grants were given to missions to assist them in giving a firm standing to the schools demonstrates a leader with an understanding that with sound educational institutions, a country is as good as made -as the institutions will turn out all rounded manpower to continue with the development of the society driven by well thought out ideas, policies, programmes.

Secondly, it is a sign that he recognizes the challenges of perennial underfunding bedevilling the education sector not just in missionary schools in Delta State but across all the privately and government-owned schools across all the states of the federation.

This challenge has as a consequence brought upon the nation an astronomical increase in the rate of out of school children, especially in the northern part of Nigeria, to swell in number, even when it is obvious that the streets are known for breeding all forms of criminals and other social misfits who constitute the real threat in the forms of armed robbers; thugs, drunkards, prostitutes and all other social ills that give a bad name to the society. This underfunding challenge has also visited the sector with a state of affairs where a number of Nigerians are in school but are learning nothing; as schooling, according to UNICEF, does not always lead to learning.

“In Nigeria, there are more non-learners in school than out of school,” UNICEF concluded.

More specifically, aside from being in the best interest of the state government that those schools returned to the missions are supported to stand because they provide a space for study for some of our children across the state, Okowa’s current gesture reinforces the belief that we all have reasons not only to feel worried but collectively work hard to deliver the nation’s education sector in ways that will bring to an end the reign of thoughtless demand for fees of varying amounts/ proposed by the school authorities-a development that is financially squeezing the life out of the innocent students and their parents.

There exist more concrete reasons as to why Governor Okowa’s present move needs to be applauded.

At the most fundamental levels, it refreshes the minds of Nigerians of the passionate plea by the United Nations for government-private sector collaboration for sustainable development.

For instance, there was a veiled agreement among stakeholders at a recent gathering in Lagos that the government at all levels in Nigeria is shirking the traditional but universal responsibility of provision of educational, economic and infrastructural succour to the citizenry which the instrumentality of participatory democracy and election of leaders confers on them.

Essentially, participants at that event were unanimous that the 2030 sustainable agenda has partnership and collaboration at its centre. It was clearly stated that the scale and ambition of this agenda call for smart partnerships, collaborations, ecosystem thinking, co-creation and alignment of various intervention efforts by the public and private sectors and civil society.

The conference, which had as a theme Partnership for Sustainable Development and Innovation, was among other goals aimed at finding an ‘urgent need for creative and innovative thinking by all strata of the society-public and private sector and civil society-to promoting sustained and inclusive economic growth, social development and environmental protection’.

To further buttress the imperativeness of this needed commitment from all the parties in tackling the agenda, the conference stressed that the partnership is at the very centre of the sustainable development agenda as it is both a means to an end since it is a crucial enabler for the attainment of the other goals and an end to in itself since Goal 17 is a means of implementation and revitalised global partnership’.

Very instructive also, finding a solution to the societal problems, particularly providing access to adequate and quality education for the youths of this nation will in some ways help solve the youth unemployment challenge and develop a climate of sustainable future and innovation among our youths.

Talking about youth unemployment in Nigeria, a report recently put it this way: “We are in a dire state of strait because unemployment has diverse implications. Security wise, the large unemployed youth population is a threat to the security of the few that are employed. Any transformation agenda that does not have job creation at the centre of its programme will take us nowhere”

Youths’ challenge cuts across, regions, religions, and tribes, and has led to the proliferation of ethnic militia as well as youth restiveness across the country. This may, in turn, hamper the peace needed if handled with levity.  But this threat has become more pronounced in the oil-rich region of the country with the chunk of the proponents spearheaded by the large army of professionally trained ex-militants currently without a job. Proper management of these teaming youth is the panacea for determining the success or otherwise of the 2030 sustainable agenda, it is only by engaging these teeming youths through employment creation that the incessant youth restiveness can be abated.

One fact we must acknowledge is that the 2030 Sustainable Development Goal was formulated to among other aims promote and carter for people, peace, the planet, and poverty but nurturing to bear the premeditated result will depend on not just the private sector but our government.

To, therefore, move this nation forward, we need to like Governor Okowa, recognize that a sound educational sector and sustained infrastructural development remain the spine. We must learn that nations such as the Jews progressed because they possessed a tradition of education combined with social and political action. They enthroned education and sacrificed to get it.

We must as a nation make quality but subsidized education a human right that will be accessible to all Nigerians irrespective of tribe/ethnicity, sex, religion or creed. And develop the political will to fund education in compliance with the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization’s (UNESCO) budgetary recommendation.

Jerome-Mario Chijioke Utomi is the Programme Coordinator (Media and Public Policy), Social and Economic Justice Advocacy (SEJA), Lagos. He can be reached via

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Tips for Building a Low-code Strategy



Low-code Development

By Hyther Nizam

Over the last few years, businesses have been racing to digitise their processes and offerings. Whether you’re working from home, banking online, or doing a quick grocery order, you’ve likely noticed a significant rate of transformation. Given that every aspect of a consumer’s daily life is connected to the digital world, the challenge of digital transformation may be daunting. Traditional ways of developing consumer and internal applications are time-consuming and usually require a large number of development resources.

Fortunately, low-code/no-code (LCNC) development platforms empower businesses to quickly create cross-platform applications without writing thousands of lines of code. Low-code/no-code not only simplifies development but also saves time and money. Low-code is not a new concept, but demand for it has increased as a result of the pandemic and the necessity for businesses to speed up their digital transformation initiatives.

The advantages of low-code/no-code 

LCNC platforms provide a visual environment for building applications. As they provide snippets of pre-built code in a simple drag-and-drop user interface, people with little to no programming experience can also build custom web/mobile applications. However, it’s crucial to take the time to identify the most effective LCNC platform for your business before diving headfirst into app building.

The LCNC platforms help teams develop applications faster and with fewer errors than traditional coding. Because the platforms provide standard components such as forms, report templates, and ready-to-use code snippets, months of development time can be saved. By eliminating some of the more complex aspects of the application development process (such as creating frameworks and linking databases), these platforms empower people across the organisation to get involved in application development and bring their business ideas to fruition, without having to depend on IT assistance.

Zoho Creator, Zoho’s low-code platform, aims to facilitate efficient app development and effective collaboration. It uses pre-built integrations to connect with hundreds of systems and cloud services to make app development quicker and easier. Organisations can seamlessly integrate Creator with other Zoho applications and third-party platforms like QuickBooks, Zapier, and PayPal. To facilitate effective collaboration, Creator gives organisations the power to assign roles to users and grant them access to information relevant to their jobs. Role-based access controls help ensure the application development process is both streamlined and secure.

Now that digital transformation is an ongoing imperative for most businesses, agility and collaboration are critical. Our research shows that 40% of organisations are involving their business teams in their digital transformation processes. This indicates a growing understanding that digital transformation affects the whole business—not just IT teams.

Considerations for using LCNC strategies

First, and potentially most important, your business must know what to look for in LCNC platforms. Besides the visual modelling and drag-and-drop interfaces that make these platforms easier to use, your LCNC platform should be secure. It should have the required security framework certifications in place and espouse data confidentiality measures. It’s important to avoid using software that potentially opens the door to hackers.

Your LCNC platform should be equipped for multi-device deployment (meaning that you only have to create an app once for it to be accessible on any device), and scalability so you can add more users to your application as your organisation grows.

Once you’ve identified the right platform, it’s time to start cross-organisational planning for the digital experiences your organisation will provide, and the ways low-code can be leveraged to create those experiences. Remember, one of the major strengths of a good low-code platform is that it allows for collaboration. People across the organisation need to be exposed to the platform to understand what it can do for them.

The time is now

There has never been a better time for your business to embrace an LCNC strategy, as the world is undergoing an unprecedented rate of digital transformation. It is essential, however, to combine the correct platform with a strategy that enables your entire company to realise the benefits of low-code development. This is the most effective way to put your business ahead of the competition.

Hyther Nizam is the President of MEA at Zoho Corp

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B2B e-Commerce: Fostering Sales, Distribution with Data Analytics



Data Analytics

The informal sector is a major source of economic growth and productivity globally. According to both the World Bank and the International Labour Organisation (ILO) statistics, more than 2 billion people representing 61% of the world’s employed population work in the informal sector.

Of the number, 93% are reportedly in emerging and developing countries. Around 86% of employment in Sub-Saharan Africa is in the informal sector, while 80% of household retail distribution is said to be delivered via informal retailers.

Nigeria is reputed to have a huge informal sector that makes up 50% of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and accounts for over 90% of employment. The informal retail market value is estimated at US$100bn out of which the food and consumer goods retail segment is worth over $40bn.

B2B e-commerce firm Alerzo’s CEO, Adewale Opaleye, described the informal sector as a major source of economic growth, productivity and competitiveness.

Despite the importance of the sector, informal retailers face complex challenges that impede their business growth, financial and income stability and service quality. The challenges include limited inventory due to high demands, meaning the market is underserved; and limited access to funding which sometimes leads them to stock low-quality products.

The retail market is also clustered; products are often overpriced because prices are largely unregulated. Distance to market especially those in hard-to-reach locations; opportunity costs; dangers of travel; inadequate logistics such as transport to move purchased goods also impact informal retailers adversely. The unstructured nature of most retail businesses is another setback.

The challenges faced by consumers at the base of the pyramid also represent another key issue in the retail market. Often, lack of access to reliable product information, quality products and services, and low purchasing power deny consumers access to everyday essentials such as food, medicine, hygiene and household products.

The fallout of the challenges in the retail market segment is that manufacturers and distributors are often unable to track data on informal retail sales, regulate quality or access BoP customers for research, marketing or the delivery of social mission goals.

As a strategic pivot for national GDP growth, reforming Nigeria’s informal trade is a key to unlocking socio-economic prosperity for the citizens, and improving the lives of the retailers themselves including their families, and the communities in which they operate.

Hence, initiatives that remove barriers in the Factory-to-Retail distribution chain for consumer goods companies are most welcome. The role of e-Commerce, in particular tech-driven B2B e-Commerce platforms, is pivotal in this regard.

“Our mission is to empower these informal retailers through our ecosystem of digital products, so they are equipped to run profitable and sustainable businesses. We strongly believe that technology has the potential to transform the way informal retailers conduct their businesses, by using it to facilitate – with just a click of a button – fast and easy access to a wide assortment of consumer products at zero delivery cost to the retailers,” Alerzo CEO, Opaleye said.

B2B e-Commerce platforms are beneficial to manufacturers and tier one distributors as enablers of data gathering and market intelligence. By utilising an array of digital technologies to gather market intelligence and analyse data, they arm goods producers with vital information on consumer behaviour to further help them in research and product development. Distributors also use such information to scale up operational efficiency.

The use of customer data significantly fosters sales growth and enhances customer relationships. According to Statista, a 2018 survey in the United States showed that 84% of industry-wide leading firms revealed that data analytics helped to bring greater accuracy to their decision-making. That is, data utilisation and related analytics methods were reported to deliver the most value to firms by reducing expenses and creating new avenues for innovation and disruption.

Data analytics enable manufacturers and distributors to strengthen their business operations. For example, in supply chain management and customer relationship, data analytics can support the personalisation and customisation of sales and customer services to build stronger and more personal relationships with customers.

By deploying data technologies and tools, B2B e-Commerce platforms like Alerzo collect data and market intelligence to identify what customers actually expect from companies and to predict their future demands. In other words, data analytics help to create business knowledge, that is, information and understanding related to business processes and the business environment. It can additionally reveal hidden behavioural patterns.

Furthermore, B2B e-Commerce can provide manufacturers access to real-time data and instant information, creating real-time knowledge of markets, and when properly implemented, can increase sales. McKinsey’s research suggests that a healthy data culture, that is, an organisational culture that accelerates the application of data analytics, is becoming increasingly important for leading and lagging companies. Also, the deployment of data helps to provide accurate and timely information within an organisation.

B2B e-Commerce platforms by utilising their digital solutions can make the collection of data more feasible and cost-effective for manufacturers and distributors. Data analytics as one of the emerging areas in the domain of B2B marketing can even support businesses with access to big data thereby increasing access to quantitative and qualitative information beyond just transaction data such as purchase quantities.

In a nutshell, B2B e-Commerce in so many ways offers solutions that are helping to address the needs in the Factory-to-Retail distribution value chain holistically – at the supply side (manufacturers, top-tier distributors and last-mile retailers), and the consumers (demand) side.

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