As we settle into 2017, with the entrepreneur wondering what the future holds for the Nigerian economy, questions like ‘how long it will take for the current economic recession to end?’ come to mind.
Below we have put together at least three questions every entrepreneur should answer in the mist of uncertainties in 2017.
1. How is the current economic recession affecting your customers? This is assuming you the entrepreneur already know your customers. A strong knowledge of who your customers are is important if you must answer the question of how they are affected by the recession. What insights do you have on your customers? What are they buying? Is your product/service relevant to them? What do you know about their source of income?
If your customers are badly affected by the recession, it is most likely that your business will be affected too. Re-strategizing becomes a major determinant of future gains. Would you consider price reductions in the form of sales promotions? Work on getting better deals with suppliers and vendors to aid cost reduction?
Takeaway: Product Matching & Mapping: the vital ingredient for improvement in product, pricing and promotions comes into play if you are to take conversion seriously in this recession. Market research is relevant.
2. What do you know about your competitors? How well do you know your competition? As the saying goes, knowledge is power. A little knowledge about the direction your competitors are going in the mist of a crisis can result in sustainable competitive advantage. What are your weaknesses in relation to your competitors? Are there any areas where they are excelling better than you? or vice versa.
Takeaway: An in-depth SWOT analysis will allow for a better understanding of your competitors. This would further allow for better decision making. It can also help with shaping a stronger value preposition; one that would ensure you continue to grow your customer base going forward.
3. Do you have the capacity to deliver? How do you respond to gaps in the product/service delivery process? Having a better understanding of your target market works best for your brand when the brand has the capacity to meet consumer needs. Do you have the manpower, the aligning technology and ability to deliver quality products/services in the shortest time frame? It is not enough to understand your target market and the competition. There is a need for proper business analysis, re-strategizing and implementation of winning strategies. In football for example, a coach after a series of failed matches would reevaluate the team’s strengths and weaknesses, then take on measures to eliminate or minimize weaknesses. Example: when a coach decides to buy or bring in a new striker after playing 8 straight games with no goals scored.
Takeaway: Inability to deliver as expected by customers and on time can create avenues for cracks in relations. It is important that the product/service delivery process is maintained and improved on a continued basis. Lets say you discover a gap in product/service quality for example, it makes business sense to respond as quickly as possible to such a gap at a time like this.
Forget whatever you have been told in the past, if you are running a business this is the best time to reevaluate and re-strategize. This is the best time to invest more into your business whether financial, in market research, and/or otherwise. In Greek the word crisis is “to separate, to sift” meaning to pass judgement, to keep just what is worthwhile. Every crisis is an opportunity and the deeper the crisis, the better the opportunity.
Why DJ Cuppy Should Quit Music As An Artist
If you are a Nigerian, you most likely already know who DJ Cuppy is. Ms. Otedola is a Business and Economics graduate who also has a Master’s Degree in Music Business from New York University, USA. She is a renowned Dj and the daughter of Nigerian Businessman, Mr. Femi Otedola.
Many Nigerians got to know Dj Cuppy when she started Djing in Nigeria. Personally, I believe she is a talented Dj and has done well to inspire many upcoming DJs in Africa, regardless of status or ethnic group. However, I strongly believe Dj. Cuppy will make a lot more impact as a music business mogul. That is, instead of just continuing to DJ, produce and perform as an artist, she should consider investing in the industry as a record label owner like the likes of Don Jazzy and Davido.
That is, Dj Cuppy can upgrade her music management and content production business, Red Velvet Music Group to a creative media & entertainment company.
She has the capacity to pull the capital needed to make this happen in a major way. I envision a huge warehouse-like building in Lagos. Partitioned to house a mega music studio, a dance studio, a film studio, and even a music museum. Do you see where this is going?
You were probably expecting me to bash her, right?. But no, this is not one of those – put the person down articles. Not at all. We are not about that life on steadygettingit.com. It’s all about empowering people over here, especially young Nigerians. Now let’s get back to our very own adorable Ms. Cuppy and why she should consider doing more than just singing or djing.
Posterity will smile on her for creating an avenue for a lot more talented individuals in Nigeria to attain limelight. She was able to pull the who is who in society together to raise over 5 billion Naira for her foundation recently. I have no doubt that she can make a record label and a lot more happen. Do you agree? Do you think she has the potential for success as a record label executive? Feel free to share your opinion in the comment section.
Getting A Patent For Your Idea In Nigeria
It is one thing to have a great idea but when it comes to protecting the idea from being copied, that can be a challenge.
What is a patent? A patent is a monopoly granted by the federal government to an inventor for a limited period of time to use or license his or her invention. We have been asked time and time again if it is possible to patent a business idea in Nigeria.
The answer to this is a big NO! But don’t get disappointed just yet. Although, you may not be able to patent your startup idea, you can patent an invention. You can get a patent in Nigeria just like any where else even though different rules may apply.
The Difference Between An Idea And An Invention
While an idea is an untested imaginary concept, an invention is the realistic product of your idea. Your invention can be in the form of a process, composition, that has a description, design, features, etc.
For instant, you have an idea for a software that records your body temperature daily to determine your health status. The idea for such an idea can’t be patented if you have not built it or can’t proof that the software can be developed.
Who Is In-Charge?
Patents are issued by The Trademarks, Patents And Designs Registry, Commercial Law Department, Federal Ministry Of Industry, Trade & Investment.
Who Can File A Patent?
Only accredited agents can file a patent on your behalf. Therefore, it is advised that you hired the services of a seasoned certified patent lawyer or firm.
What is Required for Registration?
Your concept has to be unique. In other words, it should not have been patented before. Moreover, you would have a stronger case for a patent if the invention is totally innovative. Every applications for patent has to come with a request for patent. Which has to be signed by the applicant or an agent representative.
The patent application should also contain the names and address of the applicant, a specification requirement. As well as a claim, drawings (of process) and plans, a declaration if any, signed by the inventor, a signed power of attorney or authorization of the agent if the request is made by the agent; the address of the business in Nigeria and the patent fee.
What Is The Duration Of Patent?
In Nigeria, every patent ensures the holder is granted a monopoly for twenty years from the date the patent was filed. Also note that not paying the fixed yearly fees can result to the patent getting canceled. The grace period for the payment of such fees is six (6) months.
Want To Patent Your Invention?
In a bid to file patent for an application we are currently developing, we sort the services of a law firm with experience in patent registration in Nigeria. The process was smooth and affordable. So much so I had to make this recommendation. NLIP Watch helped with all the technicalities involved with our application. I believe they can help with yours. Visit the seasoned lawyers at nlipw.com to discuss your patent today.
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