Influencer marketing: How Kenyan brands are partnering with celebs and bloggers
Lately Kenyan brands have been partnering with influencers to push their messages to their target audiences. These bloggers, media personalities and sport stars have large social media followings and clout, which allow brands to connect to customers in authentic ways.
Here are some Kenyan brands tapping into influencer marketing.
Blaze by Safaricom
Kenyan mobile telecommunications giant Safaricom’s Blaze platform enables young customers to customise their packages based on how much they want to spend on airtime, data and SMS. To promote the initiative, Safaricom is using artists, entrepreneurs and celebrities that share Blaze-related content on their own social media platforms. These personalities include popular actor Nick Mutuma, entrepreneur Michelle Ntalami (read our profile) and musician King Kaka. Some of them also acted as youth mentors and took part in Blaze events that encouraged the youth to ‘Be Your Own Boss (BYOB)’ that were held in Kenya’s main cities of Nairobi, Mombasa and Kisumu as well as at leading universities.
Kenya Tourism Board
Through the hash tag #TembeaKenya (‘explore Kenya’ in Swahili), the Kenya Tourism Board is encouraging Kenyans to travel in their own country. The organisation has partnered with bloggers, photographers and media personalities who share images of their travels around the country.
One of the recent campaigns involved Maina Kageni, one of Kenya’s top radio hosts. The Maina Kageni Road Trip Tour travelled throughout the country over a period of at 52 weekends. Kenyans were kept up to date on the trips through the #TembeaKenya hashtag on social media and through Maina’s social media pages.
The brand generates content around sports, especially the English Premier League. Consumers are encouraged to drink Guinness and text the number under the bottle cap to win tickets to live matches in the UK. To get its message across, Guinness has partnered with sports and media personalities such as Carol Radull, a renowned radio host and sports fanatic, and Andrew Amonde, captain of the Kenya sevens rugby team.
Recently, the brand has also been working with food blog Kaluhi’s Kitchen to develop recipes that incorporate the drink. Guinness used the blogger’s following to drive sales by giving non-Guinness drinkers a reason to consume the product, albeit in their meals.
Clothing company Vivo Activewear (read our profile) uses media personalities, fashion bloggers and designers to showcase its collections. One of the influencers it works with is Grace Msalame, a former TV presenter, who regularly posts images of herself dressed in Vivo.
In addition, Vivo Activewear has launched ranges designed in cooperation with influencers. For example, the This is Ess Collection for Vivo was a partnership with Kenyan blogger Sharon Mundia, while fashion designer Wambui Kibue has also collaborated with the brand.
Resolution Insurance, a Kenyan health insurance provider, partnered with Janet Mbugua, a popular news anchor, to create an online platform called The journey with Janet. It was launched while Mbugua was expecting her first-born son, and features her writings on various issues related to motherhood. In addition Mbugua also speaks at Resolution Insurance engagements and events, and profiles Resolution’s brand offerings on her personal platforms.