Olumide takes us through his journey from being a small-time blogger and content creator on Twitter to being a successful Marketing Manager and Social Media Marketing Consultant.
FP: What do you do?
OLUMIDE: I currently work as Marketing Manager at Healthtracka – a health tech startup. In addition, I design marketing and communications strategy for small and medium businesses. I am also a Social Media Marketing Tutor for Digital Marketing Institute (DMI), in Ireland.
FP: How did you begin your career?
OLUMIDE: I started my career as a blogger and social media content creator (on Twitter). This served as a foundation for some of the popularity I enjoy today as GlowVille. It got me my first job as a media executive at a real estate firm and has helped me till now.
FP: How relevant is your undergraduate major to your work?
OLUMIDE: Very relevant. Although I am not currently practicing what I studied at the university, I have been able to bring some aspects of art and creativity into my work as a well-rounded marketing professional. I write scripts for ads, creative pieces for social media marketing, and email copies, and I develop marketing activation ideas. All of these require creativity, many of which are inspired by my time as a student of Dramatic Arts at Obafemi Awolowo University.
FP: How does your job affect your general lifestyle?
OLUMIDE: My job is fun when I can work with teams and with creative minds. Over the years, I have found myself developing a keen eye for people in that mold. And when I find such people, I always end up creating something. A downside to this is that I have many unfinished, dormant projects. The few projects I have been able to finish have been doing well, such as Lagos Hangout and Highfliers Hub.
It can also be difficult to have time for a lot of social activities, especially when you have many deadlines coming at you almost all the time. But I try to make time for my wife and family.
In other areas such as my health, I am feeling some heat. Sitting for long hours to research, think, plan, or write content takes a toll on the spine. The eyes too may start to weaken. And for someone who now has to drive to The Island more often than before, I won’t say I am having the best lifestyle experience. But I am able to manage by being self-aware and taking necessary precautions.
FP: How did you become interested in this field?
OLUMIDE: It was in my 3rd year at the university. I enrolled in a training on blogging. My heroes at the time were Linda Ikeji and Olorisupergirl. I wanted to have a blog as popular as theirs. So, I went straight into blogging. Being a blogger sharpened my skills as a content writer, then I learned how to promote my content on social media and SEO, email, and other areas. I had become a marketing pro before I really knew what being a digital marketer was all about.
FP: What kind of education, training, or background does your job require?
OLUMIDE: I will say that in marketing, you can be from any field and succeed. You essentially need an intelligent mind, a creative mind, and the ability to learn quickly. If you study marketing in school, it gives you an advantage, but you still need to practically learn how to use the ever-evolving marketing tools – social media tools, content creation tools, social listening tools, Ad tools, email tools, analytics tools, and many others.
As you grow in the profession, you will also need to expand your knowledge through professional certification programs or Masters programs. I can recommend NIM and CIM.
Marketing is broad and connects with other areas such as branding, public relations, growth, product marketing, product management, and others. To grow and go far, you will need certifications in these areas too. The biggest point is going for an executive MBA. That way, you are going into full business management and can earn at the highest level.
FP: What skills, abilities, and personal attributes are essential to success in your field?
OLUMIDE: As mentioned earlier, an open mind, intelligence, and creativity will help you rise quickly. Being intentional about building professional relationships will also help you scale the career ladder and go very far.
FP: What kind of accomplishments tend to be valued in this field?
OLUMIDE: First, have a portfolio of your best work and achievements on the job you are doing. Marketers should never let any success go without being recorded. Your ability to reference your past success will help you get bigger roles. Add this with certifications and qualifications, and you will be respected. Also, be a great contributor to your professional groups and associations. The more knowledge you can prove to have, the more respect and trust you can gain to handle big responsibilities.
FP: What current issues and trends in the field should we know about?
OLUMIDE: For now, I will say two of the biggest issues marketers need to focus on is how to successfully find and engage customers in a cookie-less world, where you have to do all the hard work in gathering your own data and building communities around it. Secondly, marketers should brace up for Web 3.0. That’s the future, and we must position rightly for it.
FP: What’s something you wish you knew earlier in your career/life?
OLUMIDE: That would be the fact that your job is as good as the value you give and the value you get from it. If you are giving more than you are getting, you deserve better and should go for it. If you are getting more than you are offering, it means you are doing something wrong. The former applies more to the situation I found myself in the first 3 years of my career in marketing. I took too long to learn, but I am recovering nicely.
FP: What do you like most about your work?
OLUMIDE: The ability to create something that influences people to take any action, shift their mindset, or change their behavior. I am happy when my work as a marketer delivers the desired result of sales, brand development, and happy customers.
FP: If you could do it all over again, would you choose the same path for yourself? If not, what would you change?
OLUMIDE: A bit of both. I will love to be a marketer in any lifetime. But if that’s impossible, I would love to be in the entertainment business.
Olumide Glowville is a Digital Marketing Strategist, Founder, Highfliers Club, and the Convener, Lagos Hangout. He lives in Lagos, NG with his family.
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