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CNS upbeat about digital era

Creative Nigeria Summit 2018 wrapped up successfully on Tuesday with a full day of in-depth masterclasses and industry discussions.

The second and final day of Creative Nigeria Summit (CNS) 2018 kicked off with a plenary discussion focused on coproduction that featured Sanjay Salil, MD of MediaGuru, Waterstone Entertainment CEO Jeff Kallegheri and producer and host Eunice Omole and was moderated by Africa MediaWorks CEO Lindsey Oliver.

According to the panel, the key to the right coproduction is focusing on the fundamentals, by looking at your environment before going to Hollywood. They all agreed that building relationships locally is essential for growth, although honesty and good reputation are also key.

Meanwhile, Salil warned against having certain expectations when coproducing: “If someone tells you to change things too much, don’t do it. If you are convinced that you shouldn’t do something, don’t compromise. Always have editorial control, never bend over completely to change your story.”

Speakers line up on day two of CNS2018

In his keynote speech, Vesselin Shaoulov, CEO of GARB Audience Measurement in Bulgaria, gave an in-depth insight into the importance of audience measurement within the television and film industries. During his presentation, guests were made aware of the processes involved in audience measurement and ratings.

“Effective and successful media products target the right audience and communicate with them in an effective way. As the media industry becomes more fragmented, so competition for the audience share becomes more intense than ever. Knowing precisely who your target audience are and what makes them tick is therefore increasingly important,” said Shaoulov.

Offering a completely different perspective on retaining audience attention, Nigerian writer Tolu Ajayi returned with another masterclass, this time focusing on the power of telenovelas and how to create them locally.

“Firstly, you must legally acquire telenovelas to adapt them. Then you write in your own backgrounds and characters in a way that your viewers can relate to but ensure that in editing you keep it as close to the original as possible,” he said.

The secret to international formats Anahita Kheder, senior VP for the Middle East, Africa and South East Europe at FremantleMedia, gave her take on the secret to international formats: “Use the right platform for the right audience and generate revenue for your local content by going global,” she said.

“You don’t need to produce a pilot to share your content. Why not sell your story instead, sell the script and have someone else produce the film, but ensure that your rights are protected.

“Sometimes being on TV is unnecessary – try digital instead. Many projects began on a digital platform. At FremantleMedia, we don’t leave the virality of our content to chance. If we want it to go viral we put in the work, we put ourselves out there, making sure our content remains relevant to audiences around the world,” said Kheder.

In a panel session moderated by Africa MediaWorks’ Oliver, Play TV chief Toyin Subair asked a panel of advertising agency and media execs – including Viacom Africa’s Bada Akintunde; Anthony Ekun, creative director at SO&U; and Tolulope Ajayi, branded content manager at Insight Communications – to address the issue of “unfair mediation” by agencies in the media industry.

“You are the ones who will lose if brands go digital without the interference of agencies, so I ask: what solutions do you propose to this, because you make more money out of these deals. You’ve stated the problems and directed them at the producers and directors, but where do you come in?” asked Subair.

Akintunde replied that he couldn’t speak for the other agencies but believes that the media industry should jointly deliberate on how these issues can be solved.

However, the panelists agreed that brands are becoming more forthcoming with audience engagement and are improving the content they produce, making each advert relatable to its target audience.

Elsewhere, Ed Waller, editorial director of UK publisher C21Media, delivered a report on the international formats market. “The value of the global formats industry has more than doubled since 2004 and demand for local programming is the key to this growth,” he said.

The last plenary discussion was about the effectiveness of social media in the media industry. The session was moderated by Tobi Balogun, CEO of TobyDonut, featuring Tiwalola Olanubi, lead creative at DottsMediaHouse, and Olufemi Oguntamu, CEO of Penzaarville Africa, who spoke about the importance of social media to marketing.

According to the speakers, social media is a way to advertise as though you are not advertising. In that way you get people talking about a movie long before it begins to air and it helps to keep your audience interested and engaged.

“If you are a producer, you don’t need to fight to get your content on TV – try digital media. That’s what [child comedian] Emmanuella did with YouTube. However, you need to understand that what worked yesterday may not work today, but always bear in mind that getting content on social media doesn’t require a huge budget,” said Balogun.

The event wrapped with a vote of thanks from Taiwo Olakunle, MD of Think Tank Media & Advertising, organiser of Creative Nigeria Summit.

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CNS offers ‘mutual learning’ opportunity

With the Creative Nigeria Summit (CNS) underway, Content Nigeria speaks to C21Media editorial director Ed Waller, who is moderating today’s panel discussions, to get his insight into the event and the wider industry.

Ed Waller

Having kicked off earlier with a welcome speech from the Nigeria minister of information and culture Lai Mohammed, the CNS will include panel discussions covering how Nigeria can crack the international TV market, gameshows and audience engagement. Other sessions will include masterclasses on scriptwriting and broadcasting.

You will be moderating a number of sessions today. What can you tell us about what you’re expecting to hear about?
I’m hoping to hear a lot about exciting new content coming up in Nigeria. There are a lot of countries trying to crack the international market, and some of them have done so successfully, like Turkey, Israel and South Korea.
Today we’ll be hearing how Nigeria producers are strategising to do the same. I look forward to hearing about interesting content that has domestic success as well as international appeal – high-quality shows that meet the demand of the world market and audiences. Nigerians can bring a whole new approach to drama with high-quality production.
Take a look at Netflix, for instance. They have a strategy for making local shows in a global market. They don’t shy away from making local content but they make it in such a way that you don’t have to be in the country to understand or enjoy it.
Also, on the unscripted side, Nigerians are at a stage where they are licensing formats from the international market. Those kinds of stories have been reported on Content Nigeria.
The country can see these deals as a nursery slope of getting to a point of original development. With this summit, I believe Nigerians can learn how a format is created and how to execute and produce viable formats successfully. That’s a step to developing your own ideas – ideas so good that they become a hit in Nigeria and worldwide.
So, it’s a well-trodden path and Nigeria is learning as they go. They need to have ratings and measurements to establish these things.

Coming from London, what impact do you suppose the summit will have on the Nigerian market?
I think it’s about mutual learning. There are international producers on the panels who are here to learn about the companies in Nigeria that are creative, that have the juice to create a format or a show they can pick up and distribute around the world. Also, Nigerians will learn what they need to do to make their content appealing. It’s mutual.
Don’t underestimate the need for fresh ideas in the world market. There are so many channels that produce and so many platforms for distribution, whether it’s telcos, cable channels, satellite channels or digital media.

Follow @Content_Nigeria on Twitter for more live updates of #CNS2018. C21Media is a partner in Content Nigeria with Think Tank Advertising & Media.

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