After completing my MBA specializing in marketing, I began my career in advertising. I worked with some of the leading ad-agencies such as Leo Burnett and Saatchi & Saatchi. This was before digital marketing was even a thing, but not in the ‘Mad Men’ sort of way :)
Believe it or not, the creative ad-agencies were a bit too straight-jacketed for my liking. Therefore, I decided to quit the ad-world and join an ed-tech startup. The startup allowed me to wear multiple hats which I enjoyed, but most of my work was around marketing and product development. The three years at the startup were a crash course in various stages of product lifecycle and management, and I was hungry for more.
After learning the ropes of digital and content marketing at the startup, I went on to join the digital marketing team of a fast growing Indian university. The marketing budgets were huge when compared to the startup and we ended up running campaigns in over ten countries. This helped me gain an understanding of scaling and growth.
One of the target countries for the University campaigns was Nigeria. Having read about Nigeria’s potential to become a digital economy and leapfrogging its way in digital transformation certainly made me curious about the place.
The first year was tough! What was I thinking starting an agency in Nigeria? I didn’t have any network, or many friends at the time. However, my content marketing skills proved vital in getting me a foot in the door at right places. I started a photography blog showcasing the energy and vibrancy of Nigeria, and in a few months everyone was talking about it, including the Guardian. (Insert link). The backlinks and hustle paid off eventually, and my first client was a fast growing Nigerian Bank.
There was just no looking back from there. To keep up with the demand for web development related work, I had to set up a back-office in India. Initially, it was a challenge to manage things remotely because of the time zones and several projects running in parallel, but I quickly learnt about systems and checklists. This fuelled growth, leading to more referral work with some of Nigeria’s top businesses and non-profits.
I absolutely loved my time in Nigeria, but the constant devaluation of the Nigerian currency was making it challenging to stay afloat. In 2017, I visited Toronto to see some friends (and Niagara Falls of-course), and really loved the city. And finally, in April 2019 when it was time to say goodbye to (sunny and warm) Lagos, I chose Toronto. The emerging tech-sector and the stable Canadian economy played a really important role in my decision making.
After settling in Toronto’s lovely mid-town neighbourhood, I enrolled in a full-time UX Diploma course. This was an outstanding experience which brought me a step closer to my career goals. After the course was completed, I continued to consult with businesses on their digital journey.
The sum is certainly greater (and fulfilling) than the parts when it comes to life experiences. My interaction with different cultures in several countries has shaped me into a human of the world.
Photography has been a serious hobby of mine since 2003, and some of my pictures have been published in world's leading publications.