I couldn’t help paying attention to a trending conversation on premier
blogger Linda Ikeji’s latest toy – a N24m Range Rover Sport – which she promoted on her blog.
I want to join in.
I’ve visited the Linda Ikeji blog twice before. The first was to study the strategy she uses to attract heavy
traffic that qualifies her to be paid by Google. The second was to read what
she put up about a funny radio episode where one of my colleagues stalked and “punked” her. Linda decided to be a good sport – I was told she put up the audio on her site and I went there once again to verify that Linda indeed is a good sport. She is. However, beyond
occasions, you will not find me going to Linda’s blog because the news it serves is not my cup of tea. This, however, does not mean that I don’t applaud the creativity that she has deployed
in her own unique way to claw her way to the top of Nigeria’s blogosphere. I do. She is an incredible lady; it takes creativity, guts, and a certain level of diligence and discipline to get to the top in any profession or calling – and she did it.
Having said this, I am one of those who disagree that she should put up a picture of herself with the car and tell her readers that she bought it to “spoil” herself on her birthday. And I speak as a professional communications person. Putting up a picture of her latest N24m car on her blog and crooning
that she wants to use it to “spoil” herself on her birthday may be a good marketing
strategy but it is also unfortunately in bad taste. Linda Ikeji has become a
celebrity in her own right. We know that celebrities splurge on themselves
every now and then. But they publicize their predilections with style; they don’t directly boast
about them. Rather, they allow others (the press or paparazzi) to “discover” and publicize their indulgences. The fact that you own a medium does not mean that you should use it to, as it were, boast of your acquisitions. If she has a good publicist (and she should have one),
this toy could have been “discovered” by another gossip column or paparazzi, and the story
generated in that other medium can then be reproduced on her blog.
There are two points to note – Linda Ikeji’s blog is about, and feeds on, celebrity gossip. Using it to advertise herself (her “arrival” as many would read it) is rather off-key – it makes her look like a wannabe. Second, she should note that when
celebrities directly promote their foibles in this way, they do attract some admiration no doubt, but they also activate envy or hate in the public sphere.
This is exactly what has happened to her. It is unfortunate because she doesn’t deserve the envy and hate; in my view, she has worked hard for the money she is spending on herself in a way she thinks is good for her.
On a different take, there must be a reason why she
continues to think and act small, despite her evident financial success. For instance, a fraction
of the money she spent on her latest toy could have given her a website of her
own, and she would immediately quadruple her earnings – just by cutting off the
greater share of the income that currently goes to Google.
It looks to me like Linda Ikeji is in need of professional advice on three fronts – publicity, internet strategy, and financial management.
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