Posts Tagged ‘Independence Day’

turning l

September 26, 2010 Leave a comment
Until August, never had I campaigned like I have, I am and will continue to, probably until the clock strikes midnight on Saturday, October 2nd, 2010. Why? Most Nigerians might have a clue. On Friday, October 1st, 2010, Nigeria is turning the big L – she’s going to clock 50 years! Now, I don’t know whether to say it has only been 50 years since her independence from England; or, in just 50 years, the Government has managed to take the Country from hero to zero, but I do hope one day, she’ll actually rise again.

I have been writing about, calling people about and promoting the special buttons collection I had designed specifically for this event…as well as the annual best-sellers. My tag line has been: “Celebrate this once in a lifetime with Family, Friends and Well-Wishers the Pearl Kreations-Style…by purchasing our unique and affordable Collection”.

Nia P* as usual has also been very helpful in promoting the buttons via Facebook and email. She sent a Facebook message to the Nigerian Community on Sunday morning even, and I asked her to send an email later tonight.I contacted the Nigeria at 50 Organization, but as usual, non-Nigeria-based Companies aren’t given exclusive contracts. I wish they’ll just stop it already ‘cos Pearl Kreations is missing out on a ton of opportunities! I really have to start the Nigerian registration in November as planned…unfailingly!

Luckily, the specific Nigeria-based youths we contacted for a one-time Partnership opportunity with Pearl Kreations (for this event) have generated a significant profit for us in Nigeria; as well as made themselves a lot of money in doing so! Not to sound greedy lol, but it’s nothing close to what I envisioned…if only The SKA Group was presently licensed in Nigeria *sigh*.

Oh well, I decided to move on and shifted my focus to a different market. I started by reaching out to the regional Canada-based Communities, but I got the same reluctant vibe. Even the Nigerian Community here in Ontario isn’t as responsive as I had hoped they would be – with them, I started my pitching as early as August so as not to spring the idea on people. I did my follow-up, but all I kept getting was “…great idea, we will get back to you”. One association even went as far as to order 100 buttons about two weeks ago, but as soon as it was time for payment, their Rep stopped responding. Now, suddenly, the all the executives are MIA. Thank goodness, I set up the “Production after Payment” Policy, or else, I would be one very sad Business owner right now.

Anyway, I got my elder sister in the States involved with the buttons collection. She already has a joint venture with me under Suave Clothing – the commemorate cufflinks, but I wanted the button sales to flow too! Last week, she gave me a hook up over the phone. So apparently, she was offered and bought a space at one of the venues of Nigeria’s 50th Celebration in Texas. And for those who don’t know, Maryland and Texas is home to approximately 75% of the Nigerian-American community. That is a big deal! She offered to help me sell buttons at the event and send the proceeds back to me. In order to help her focus on the cufflinks and her products, I decided to design a poster. I figured she could post them around her table/kiosk and the poster will do all the advertising. All she’ll have to do is attend to those who want buttons. Last night, I had 100 different Nigeria-themed buttons ready for shipping. Before posting them to her this afternoon, I printed a few of the posters and sent them with some of the new complimentary cards. Here is the poster:

I even designed three (3) posters advertising the cufflinks for her as well, but she’ll have print as many as she’ll want herself. I just attached the designs and sent them to her via email. I feel I should publicize the cufflinks too…after all, she’s my sister and it is a joint venture lol. There are three (3) of them: coat of arms, flag, and i-rep. I like the last best:

After first, I was reluctant to embark on the venture because they are $70.00/pair. Therefore, they are for a market not likely to be reading The SKA Blog…presently. I know a few people who would buy them though. They are however selling in the States though :-). If you’re Nigerian or well-wisher and reading this, purchase one, a few, some or the entire buttons collection today for yourself, family and friends! Celebrate this Friday’s unique occasion in an exceptionally inexpensive way…order yours today via email, online or Facebook.

Amidst all this, I still haven’t decided if I’ll be home watching the celebrations on CNN or selling the buttons at an Nigerian Association’s event somewhere in Ontario. The former is more likely.

I hope, I pray this hustling wont be in vain and pays off! lol


her 48th

November 17, 2008 Leave a comment

Preparing for the first Nigerian independence that Pearl Creations was going to be a part of was tough. The buttons had to be peculiar, attractive, different and something that had never been since so they could be impressive and fun! Eventually, we came up with 5 designs. They were so nice, I couldn’t wait to display them asap! The designs were the Nigerian national button design, and 4 all-me button designs:

1. iRep Nigeria (1): written in black with the Nigerian coat of arms on a white background.

2. iRep Nigeria (2): a design gotten off facebook…which was later discovered to have been designed by a fellow young entrepreneur for his line of t-shirts.

3. Proudly Nigerian: written in white on a black background with the Nigeria map in the center in the Nigerian flag colors- green, white, green.

4. Straight up Nigerian: the Nigerian flag in the center of the button with a virtual mean look in it and “straight up” written in the upper left corner of the flag and “Nigerian” written in the lower right corner.

When they were all ready, I decided to make it a sale after all Nigerians were the majority of the clientele. All-me buttons are usually $2.50CAD, so I decided to make them all $2.00CAD. Since there were five (5) button designs, to pep it up a bit, I decided to do a three (3) for $5.00CAD sale as well…which is a good deal anytime; and no one passes of a good deal!

Next, was on how to advertise and inform? Emails were sent out to all existing customers, messages were sent out to facebook members in both the all-me and national buttons groups, and finally, as a last resort, a poster was made.

The next decision to make was where to place the posters and flyers. I started by sending the posters to friends in other schools with an impressive Nigerian student body and/or population. I sent a poster to my younger sister in Covenant University. Having already spent a year there, I know they support entrepreneurship. I also contacted the presidents and creators of as many Nigerian groups as I could find on facebook. Finally, I glued posters in some of the bus stop sheds at night…cuz I was too shy to do it in the day! lol.

I did all this mid-September. After a reasonable couple of days (about a week), I started panicking when we didn’t get any orders! But, the following week, it was like a prank was played on me cuz tons of orders came in. It was awesome. I also got replies from a few Nigerian groups. One of which gladly gave me a table at a dinner/cultural show they had planned for the occasion. I was thrilled!

So buttons ready, all packed and with my business face on, I headed for Windsor, ON which was where I was invited to sell the Nigerian buttons. It eventually paid off. Apart from selling out, I also met a lot of other entrepreneurs who encouraged and loved the buttons concept. A particular one, Kanmi O* runs Konfirmed Clothing. What he does is make t-shirts with popular Nigerian slangs printed on them. He actually designed the emblem I used for the last button on the poster! And I found it randomly in a friend’s album on facebook. Small world! Luckily, he didn’t sue me. He even helped me sell buttons alongside a close friend of mine, Petra O*. Their competition was who could sell the most buttons in 5 minutes. I can’t remember who won, but it was nice to get extra help! lol.

A lot people didn’t bring money along so they couldn’t buy :-(, but I came prepared! Remember, this happened at the Tiara Festival? And I lost those people because I didn’t have…business cards! Well it didn’t happen again, because this time, I came with a ton (an exaggeration) of them.

I displayed them of the table alongside the button so those who didn’t come along with money, took business cards and ordered later!

All in all, it was great experience…looking forward to 2009 and beyond!