Practitioners under the aegis of the Experiential Marketers Association of Nigeria (EXMAN) have lamented the slow pace of businesses in the experiential marketing industry in the first half of the year.
Most of the experts, who spoke to MARKETING EDGE, said during the period, clients were busy cutting down on their promotional budgets because of the economic recession, which gave rise to low patronage of their brands by the consumers.
President of EXMAN, Mr. Kehinde Salami, said the experiential marketing business had been slow in the first half of the year due to a major problem posed by the Federal Government’s forex policy that affected the importation of raw materials by multinationals.
According to Salami the first six months were traditional quite slow particularly for experiential type of businesses, adding that most clients begin their spending after the first six months.
He said: “You probably get almost 60% of your annual expectations between July to December, so the idea is to try and break even by half year and hope for the best for the months ahead.”
Also, the Managing Director of Melvic Gold Communications (MGC), Mrs. Angela Ukara-Makinwa, identified lack of marketing funds as one of the major challenges that slowed down businesses in the first half of the year.
Ukara-Makinwa, who was recounted the experience of her agency, disclosed that the last six months had been difficult and rough as most clients declined on some of the businesses they were supposed to do.
She said: “Initially the first three month was not funny. Some of the ideas that were presented last year that you were sure were going to happen, you suddenly start getting things like, we can’t do it and those that were willing to do, said instead of N50 million, we are going to be doing it for N10 million. In fact clients’ cutting budgets really affected us.”
Meanwhile, a former President of EXMAN, Mr. Kayode Olageshin, said, the harsh economic climate in the country have impacted negatively on the promotional budgets of clients who have hitherto demanded for more in whatever spends they make.
Olageshin stressed that clients are beginning to demand for their Return on Investment (ROI), noting that they are now setting targets for the agencies to achieve with the little funds available.
According to him, “Generally, the sector has been affected but we are hoping that the second half of the year will be a lot better than what we saw in the first half. We saw clients cutting down on promotional activities that would give equity to their brands as they now focus on those that will generate immediate returns to them in terms of sales.”
“If the client is going to spend any money at all then we must deliver tangible returns to them. I would say that it has been a tough and interesting year for us so far. It could be a lot better and we hope that the second half of the year will be far better than the first.”