Growth of Nigeria’s advertising industry depends on expanding market pie, says consultant

In view of the volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous economic environment in Nigeria, practitioners in advertising industry have been told to explore other sectors and markets apart from Lagos and Abuja as survival and growth strategy.

An independent consultant, Ademola Adigun made this suggestion at the second National Advertising Conference in Abuja recently.

The consultant emphasised that in view of the prevailing headwinds such as election, cost to fuel, poverty, foreign exchange and other uncertainties, the advertising industry should engage in research to do more for itself by deepening the advertising pot for survival.

The consultant who gave example of Aba shoe industry, Kano commerce and similar markets said there is need to add value to what those businesses are doing.

He said Nigeria’s advertising industry is a big market with huge potentials but presently it is underperforming and not doing as it ought to do because the practitioners have not fully taken advantage of the potentials.

“The industry practitioners have to go deeper and penetrate other markets. They have to think of data creation as a new way of doing business; it has to explore other areas apart from Lagos and Abuja markets. In addition, the Federal and state governments can become clients for market development and growth if government takes sectors like tourism, health and other sectors to expand upon”.

On how regulation can enhance the growth of advertising, the consultant said the challenge in Nigeria is that regulators do not think of themselves as business enhancers. “In their mind, they are there to curtail practices, which are though part of the function, but they can do that without hampering business. “But what we see is that a lot of sectors are over-regulated in Nigeria”.

Read also: Advertising practitioners tasked to find industry real size

He cited example of protectionism, saying that nowhere in the world it happens. “There is necessary protection in some markets at early stage but Nigerian market is not in early stage in advertising.

Ademola said there is need for collaboration with regulators on possible workable regulation that will grow the industry.

On how government can assist the industry, Ademola said many governments in the world use tax credits to boost the entertainment industry. “Government can do a lot of work with them. There are many incentives government can give to increase business for them”.

During the panel discussion, Lanre Adisa the CEO of Noah’s Ark said the industry needs to have a bigger picture of the industry in comparison to music and Nollywood subsectors.

Speaking earlier, the Director General of Advertising Regulatory Council of Nigeria, ARCON, Lekan Fadolapo said the industry cannot continue to do things the same way and expect growth. “ We must make maximum benefit of the industry”

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