Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The DPRI of Branding

Hello people.  I am so sorry that posts here have been kind of erratic lately, just a reflection of how my life has been and how badly I need to balance a lot of things out.

We are still on the issue of Branding though. This will probably be our last post on the topic for now, but I do believe it has been worth our while, hasn’t it? 

What is the big news in your part of the world?  In Nigeria where I write from the big news has been the elections, the successful birthing of a new dispensation on so many fronts and the coming of age of the Nigerian electorate.

On the world stage, I believe no news has been bigger than the killing of Osama Bin Laden by the United States Navy Seals.  So we will look at these two separate events and pick out words that may be used to describe the key players and see how they relate to branding.

The first person I will like to take a look at is the first lady of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Dame Patience Jonathan. Leading up to the elections, the first lady was the butt of so many jokes and lampoons from a lot of people and their grouse was that she was not very fluent in the English Language.  But there were some extremely positive traits that the first lady possessed but no one was looking at, and that is DETERMINATION and PASSION.  What she may have lacked in finesse, she made up for in determination and passion for what she was doing.  In the history of electioneering and campaigns in Nigeria, I have never witnessed a wife stand by her husband the way the Dame did.

Dame Patience Jonathan

The more we laughed, the more determined she was, and in end she has made her way into the presidential villa by sheer determination and passion.  For every one who wants to be a brand to be reckoned with, these two words must be part of your life. Determination – a mind set to not give up no matter what, and Passion – the ability to go the extra mile.

The other person I will want to look at, still in Nigeria is Prof. Attahiru Jega. Like INEC Commissioners before him, no one gave him a chance. We have been taught surely elections in Nigeria can never be conducted properly, especially when there had to be a postponement of the first set of elections.  But he, Prof. Jega, stepped up to the plate and took RESPONSIBILITY for what went wrong. He even went on to promise that the election process will be as free and fair as possible, and even though I recognize that some people don’t agree that things went well, I believe that with this last process, Nigeria has come a long way.

Prof. Attahiru Jega

Responsibility is a recognition and understanding of what we are called to do, and rising to the occasion to ensure that we deliver.  This is another hallmark of a strong brand.  Because Prof. Jega was bold enough to take responsibility and didn’t go the blame game route that was the way things were done in the past, I will add another word to him and that is INTEGRITY.

Now a lot of us think that integrity is a character trait of the infallible, but I have come to find out that it is the ability to own up to our mistakes when we make them that make us people of integrity and not the absence of mistakes.

Our words today therefore, are DETERMINATION, PASSION, RESPONSIBILITY AND INTEGRITY.  Every strong brand must have each of these traits or it may collapse in no time.

Your brand is only as good as the sacrifice you make to build and nurture it.  Remember that your first step will be to understand that it is not an absence of mistakes; it is an ability to own up. It is not a perfection race, but an ability to focus on what is important.  Till next week, you will make it NeverTheLess.




  1. Truth is I was one of those who laughed at the First Lady. I am no longer laughing now. I had the opportunity to sit in a gathering where the MD/CEO of a multinational company spoke few weeks ago. He is not educated by the world's standards but he is a brand that is result oriented just as Dame Patience Jonathan is. Thank you for this.

  2. Yes o, there is more to being a brand than being perfect!