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Bora drives conversation on personal branding for media professionals

As the media landscape becomes increasingly unstable and outlets struggle to find viable business models, a pan-African public relations company, Bora Communications, has urged media professionals and journalists to prioritise their brands to remain relevant in the 21st Century media space.

This was the outcome of the Bora Communications first-ever exclusive virtual media conference themed ‘The Journalist As A Brand,’ which addressed several ways modern journalists can build their brands by developing custom distribution systems for their work, among other things.

Kemi Olawoye, founder/chief communications officer, Bora Communications, emphasised the need for journalists to prioritise their brands and continue to hold organisations, governments, and individuals publicly accountable as they continue to be gatekeepers in society.

According to Olawoye, journalists must understand and work towards establishing strong online identities; growing a large and dedicated following to restore the reputation of journalism in Africa, and manage the existing standards for journalists.

Discussions at the conference were led by investigative journalist and broadcaster, David Hundeyin; deputy director programmes at The Beat 99.9FM Lagos, Osikhena Dirisu, and project manager, Media Focus On Africa, Uganda, Jan Ajwang.

Hundeyin, while discussing the importance of branding through social media for the 21st Century, advised journalists to use their real names for social media accounts.

According to Hundeyin, social media is now unavoidably part of a journalist’s job as against the old belief that it was at odds with one’s career in journalism.

“Many believe that a journalist is not expected to present their own opinions on social media because of their profession, this is not in entirety the truth as your audience in many cases are intelligent enough to separate the individual from the profession,” he said.

Ajwang, while talking about her newsroom experience said, “Our passion and identity as journalists are very critical to establishing a personal brand in Journalism. We cannot build a personal brand without embracing our identity and why we chose journalism.”

In building an endearing brand on radio, Dirisu encouraged journalists to always present their audience with facts over personal opinions.

He also mentioned credibility and authenticity as attributes journalists must possess to stand out. “Journalists must constantly stick to the ethics of journalism because as a journalist your credibility is all that matters,” said Dirisu.

According to him, personal branding is still piggybacked on credibility and once the individual is known as a journalist that researches and puts out credible and reliable information; they naturally will not have issues with the audience.

The virtual conference featured personal brand stories from experts on their journey in the media world. Bora Communications is a fast-growing Pan-African public relations company focused on providing exemplary services to corporate bodies and institutions that desire to stand out.

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