Thursday, 2 February 2012

My Idea of Brand Kenya’s super bowl Ad

In my previous article I wrote on Brand Kenya’s greatest opportunities that they missed in 2011 on country branding. For those who missed the article you can read it HERE
On this blog post I want to share a creative ad concept that brand Kenya and its advertising agency could execute. I keenly watch CBS super bowl ads. The creativity is amazing. Powerful ads that drive the message home. Of late Chrysler’s ads caught my eye. Whenever they advertise their sleek top of the range cars, the story line always revolves around Detroit and ends with a powerful message I love my City; IMPORTED FROM DETROIT. Another case is India’s Incredible India ads! Check the chrysler Ads HERE
Brand Kenya CEO
This is a powerful city branding tool that depicts Detroit city as a hub of great talent and skill. This got me thinking on what Kenyan brands and brand Kenya can do to brand our country and counties with the strengths and uniqueness of Kenya. I listened to Mary Kimonye the CEO of Brand Kenya board on her recent presentation at the B.E.I conference at the school of business of university of Nairobi; she is very passionate about what she does, her performance at the board is great. She simply loves Kenya. The employees at brand Kenya are also very positive about creating a good image of Kenya internationally and inspiring patriotism locally.
At this point I would like us to brainstorm and come up with ideas that can help Brand Kenya.

Here’s my Idea.
Let’s start with what we are best known for; Our Kenyan athletes have dominated the long and middle distance races. Anderson mureta, mark mutai and the rest of the sprinters are also working very hard to place Kenya on the global map in the sprints. In fact Kenya is the 3rd country in the world in the number of medals trailing the US and Russia closely. 

Our flower industry in Naivasha exports 38 % of the world’s roses daily. That’s remarkable. Kenya is also home to mobile transfer technology. M-pesa was born here. Kenya’s tech potential and brains is also demonstrated by incubation centers such as I hub, Nailab and M lab among others. Just recently there was a story of a JKUAT student who landed a job as a software developer for the micro blogging site twitter. Read Full Story here The government has noticed the Kenya’s IT potential and come up with Konza Techno polis Park. This will be the first African ‘Silicon valley’.MORE ABOUT KONZA PARK Already big tech firms have booked space at the park. The generosity of Kenyans was best shown in the recent Kenyans for Kenya initiative where Kenyans contributed to help the hunger stricken families in the northern part of Kenya. Kenyans are also very hardworking and optimistic. Despite our problems Kenyan are always positive and hopeful. The other attribute that clearly define Kenyans is our warmth and hospitality. Visitors, missionaries, state guests, international artistes and tourists have all attested to the warmth and welcoming nature of Kenyans. The country is also known as being the origin of Safari rally and finally being the cradle of mankind and the land where great people trace their roots such as Obama. Kenya Airways has also done remarkably well in country branding,with plans of flying our flag in the every capital of Africa by 2013 this will open up Kenya to so many opportunities.
Mo farah the Somali born British long distance runner and Paula Radcliffe were in the country recently to train in the high attitude camp in Iten.
This is good for sports tourism.Full story here
Some diplomats from the west such as Adam wood, Michael rannerberger have all bought properties in the city.  The country too boasts of world class parks and amazing scenery. These are just some of the great things about Kenya.
My Concept.
The ad should be woven along this
Get a deep voiced man. An attention arresting voice that draws people’s attention.
The ad starts with showing our impact on relationships and love; at this point we show our flower farms in Naivasha. (We take care of your feelings)(Ensuring we deliver the best roses for the special occasions)
As the ad flows we can show Kenya’s athletic potential (medals and athletes dominating the sport) this will help brand Kenya as a sport tourism destination. This could showcase Iten or Eldoret as the home of champions.
As the ad flows we can bring in the aspect of Kenya’s hard working population. NTV have good clips from all parts of the country that can clearly depict this from their county editions. The country also has a great human capital that’s rated the best in Africa.
At this point we can show our world class parks, beautiful and magical Kenya, the wildebeest migration, our big five. We can also add our cultural heritage at this point, our white sunny sandy beaches etc.
As the ad moves on we can show Kenya’s tech potential, investment opportunities, government projects such as  thika road, Konza park, Tatu city and other private sector projects. It is at this point that we insert the safaricom life changing innovation the MPESA.
The safari rally aspect can also be included in the ad since we seem to be losing the honor of being the first people to coin the word “Safari Rally” Lastly can also cheekily insert the fact that Obama’s roots are here in Kenya to show that indeed we are a great Nation.
Finally the ad should end with a powerful Tagline. 

Can this concept be translated into a powerful 1 minute 30 seconds or be a under one minute commercial? Do you have better ideas? What do you think would be a good tagline for this ad? Are we yet at the point where we can brand our country and counties and place them on international media for the world to see? Can we actually refine this idea and shoot a commercial? I Love my country, I love Kenya, Let us not let our politicians divide us, The ICC issues should not turn us against each other. We are a great country.


  1. here is another concept

    Go to the roots
    A car passes, written ‘Just wedded/ married’. And the bride throws the bouquet of flowers. The car zooms off to usher in a living room setting with the flowers on a vase, and a giraffe peeps into the window. As it is fed we zoom in (images moving in a faster speed) to the horizon, a lake, flamingoes, trees, scenery, maasai dancers, a lion roars and we zoom out slow to show a television and a camcorder connected to it. We see unpacked luggage and the bride who threw the bouquet tags to his man. “Again, again.”
    Get to the root, magical Kenya.
    As the logo comes up, the ad starts again in the background.

    1. This is a nice simple concept that could also work. What makes me sick is that those well paid guys in ad agencies think of very cool ideas that don't work well with the local the end of it all we have amazing concepts that Kenyans don't connect well with the audience.

  2. As idea man or a let's put in a different way, a Kenyan who has worked on work that has been featured on a few SuperBowl sundays – our problems are different and ads are not necessarily the way to go. The ads you see during the SuperBowl are part of a bigger campaign, with SuperBowl acting as a stage or platform to launch such ideas or increase the visibility. Well, at the least the “big ideas”.

    In Kenya, most of the agencies produce work to win awards or drive up their own visibility but not work that will deliver results or affect change. We need agencies that come up with ideas that are culturally relevant, meaningful and touch peoples’ lives. These ideas can only come from agencies that have an idea-first and media-neutral approach or philosophy.

    Personally I think we have more pressing issues – while trying to reach a conference where business leaders discussed the barriers to commercial success in Africa, Richard Branson got stuck in traffic for more than 2 hours. It’s things like these that make Kenya as a brand take a big hit and the solutions I think are not via a TV spot. And this is just one example...

    We have to alter our mindset, the first task for BKB is to sell itself and it’s role to the Kenyan people. Thereafter sell the changes that it would like to institute and how these changes will affect the country and let the benefits be known. This has to be a compelling story that’s not only engaging but one that can be experienced by all Kenyans.

    All in all, I’m super stoked to see my fellow Kenyans ‘storming on how to make Kenya better.