on 30-11-2016 11:02 PM
To all our incredible entrepreneurs who strive for excellence, what a month we’ve all had!
Ifeyinwa and I love meeting new people, love learning new things and love homework. So we were buzzing after our #GEW2016 Masterclasses. Having been pushed for time to make pledges on the day, back at Chuku’s HQ we sat down to redefine our plans for World Domination starting with Growvember:
1. Tell our story to a national and international audience
At the start of this month Ifeyinwa was featured in Elle UK’s list of female entrepreneurs under 30 “bossing it!” A fantastic achievement in itself. But we quickly realised that this story can be leveraged for even greater gains. In particular, in advance of our upcoming trip to Nigeria, we wanted to share our entrepreneur story with the community back home in Nigeria. So how did we do: through some nifty networking we were featured in the biggest news and entertainment magazine in Nigeria’s – Bella Naija. We’ve also lined up meetings with a journalist for a global business magazine and several internationally recognised bloggers for our trip to Nigeria next month. We fly out next week!
And back in the UK, last week we were in Time Out and were recommended as “The best of Nigerian London”. Featuring in this specific magazine has been one of our 2016 marketing goals, so in our delight stocked up on copies from the day!
2. Redesign our brand
Although we love the vibrancy of our logo, over this year we’ve realised how difficult it is to replicate in offline formats. As such, we decided we want to rebrand for 2017 creating something more streamlined and format-responsive. We didn’t know what we wanted it to look like though. Having attended the Build Your Brand workshop we realised where we were going wrong. Emma Sexton made it clear that visuals is the job of the branding agent, they should be our consultant. Our job was to set the parameters for their work and so firstly we needed a well-defined brief.
Following the session we to get things moving and set about identifying our “consultant”. Having shortlisted two, we decided to go with StartTeck which is run by a young London-based Nigerian, so a perfect fit! The designs are a work in progress but here’s a sneaky peak of the first drafts.
3. Better engage our chop, chat, chill community
Sitting on the panel, Sam Moyo highlighted the importance of the Morning Gloryville community to her businesses. Our ears immediately pricked up. Similarly, we are building a community of chop-chat-chillers – fans of the brand who have joined us for the journey and will (hopefully!) enjoy the ride.
Currently, our e-mail newsletter is the primary channel for fostering the community. But we had realised that too many were not well engaged. After Ifeyinwa heard Harriet Minter talk about how she uses her mailing list, we decided to do something about this. Heeding Harriet’s words about consistency we pledged to contact them more regular (every 2 weeks) and consistently (on Wednesdays). This we have stuck to and you can see the latest newsletter which went out earlier today here.
We also decided to segment our mail group, tailoring our messages based on individual’s levels of engagement, and to blend our content, sharing both Chuku’s business updates and news items which may be of interest to our mailgroup (e.g. Nigerian cinema and Afrobeats concerts). As a result we’ve seen an increase in the open rate of our emails. We’ve also added 80 new members to our group in just 2 weeks. Our fastest growth yet.
And of course, you’re also invited to join our chop, chat, chiller community. Just pop your details in here and we’ll get you involved
4. Create a network map
As young, new entrepreneurs, Ifeyinwa and I have found it challenging to strike the right balance between our professional and personal lives over this last year. In particular, we wanted to make sure we still found time for our friends and family. Thankfully, Samantha Clarke had a great tool for that - the Relationship Map. We pledged to build our own, so that we could track our relationships.
As a former consultant though, I quickly spotted the opportunity to build this tool in Excel. So set about creating a template that allows us to prioritise our relationships, identify special dates and identify when we last saw someone and when we should see them next. See a screenshot of the template. It has now been populated but the information is personal, hence not included here.
For us, without doubt this month has been Growvember. Thank you again for the inspirational masterclasses and stories. We'll be rounding off our year this Sunday with our final Nigerian tapas lounge pop-up at Palm 2, Hackney E5 0QJ. Come chop, chat, chill with us, as we feast our way to the end of 2016.
We wish you all a special December and Merry Christmas!
Emeka & Ifeyinwa Frederick
on 01-12-2016 10:02 AM
Hi Emeka + Ifeyinwa,
You've definitely been up to a lot in the last couple of weeks, I'm happy to see that you've been putting what you learnt into practice with all your pledges!
The sneak preview of the new Chukus branding looks great, can't wait to see the final product and where you'll head to next. What did you find was the hardest part about completing your pledges?
Hope you enjoy your trip to Nigeria!
02-12-2016 01:57 AM - edited 02-12-2016 02:02 AM
There were different challenges but raising national and international awareness was probably the hardest, as it's not under our own control and much down to right timing. But a couple of things we've learnt is:
1. Explore your network. Through reaching out to our network we found people who weren't directly connected to those in the media but who knew people that were. Those warm introductions are super helpful.
2. Prime your mind for the opportunities. In the case of featuring in Time Out, it's something which has been on our radar for the last year but never found the right angle. In November, we found a window of opportunity and, because we had already done the groundwork, we were ready to take it.
3. Be patient. Timing is everything. You have to wait for the right moment. It will come. Just be ready for it.
On a personal note - I'm really looking forward to using my Relationship Tracker in 2017, as finding the balance is a constant challenge.
on 14-12-2016 10:05 PM
Well done guys this is great news. All of that hard work has literally paid off.
Make sure you let us know where your first permanent site is and when your opening party will be and we will come and support you.
Really happy for you. Go have a great restful Christmas as you've lots to do in 2017!
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Success through clarity, confidence & empowerment
on 15-12-2016 10:42 AM
Huge congratulations Emeka and Ifey!
I completely agree with @MadelineMac, take a well deserved rest now before a busy 2017. I'm sure a lot of the community will be heading over to your site as soon as it's open next year!