5 October 2010 10 Comments

Branding and online community lessons from a cab driver -2

Author: yinkaolaito

Yinka Olaito is happy,excited and passionate Communications & Media specialist, Trainer and speaker. Yinka Olaito helps Profits and Non-profits with effective communication and positioning for premium service delivery and returns. Yinka Olaito also has special interest in Development Communication and has consulted for noted UN Agencies. Yinka Olaito is the CCO of Michael Sage Consulting(Communication/digital media), African Child Education Right Initiatives(NGO) and Content Director, Africa Development Talk( online Platform for discussion on Policy, Governance, development across Africa) and Africa Foundation for Young Media Professionals

Branding carsonline engagementThis is the second part of a story I started yesterday. It is about  a cab driver that thought me great lesson in branding and community building through persistence and dedication. I hope our community can learn something from this too. Let me say a big thank you to Mr. Smart (not real name) who shared his story with me while offering me a service.

Stop nursing grudges: the sting of hatred affects the carrier than the beneficiary. This guy said even though his contact misled him, he holds no grudge against them. His believe is that the outcome of his own life will be judged by him and not external forces.  In building a strong brand and online community, it is not uncommon that someone may fails in the chain process or misbehaves. Do not let the hatred stop you from achieving your dream.

Determination and consistency: No brand or community will ever remain strong, viable and relevant until the owners are ready to work it out. Whatever excuse we give for laziness will eat up the energy of greatness in the brand or community. Hard work also pays. He wakes up before four in the morning most days to do his cab runs.

Be humble: Despite this person’s level of achievement he remains humble. I monitored his conversation on phone as we were going. He kept saying sir to everyone he has business arrangement with during the day. From our discussion, his plan is to make two thousand in local currency before five in the evening. After which he planned to join his wife who is managing the hotel business.

Build bridges and solid relationships: relationship is vital to the success of any brand or community. Learn to build strategic relationships that will save you from unnecessary breakdown. I asked the guy how he was able to flow in the midst of hostility. He did agree that ‘gun shooting’ is not a big deal here. As long as the indigenes feel you are becoming a threat, they can gun you down. But he has been able to manage relationships with everyone so much that he is the only non-indigene that can go into the Airport facility and scout for passenger (This I could not confirm). But what I noticed was that a policeman that first greeted me on arrival introduced him to me.

Do not insist on gain for every activity: To build viral community or brand, we must not always insist on tangible ROI for every act of giving. Some returns may come immediately but first build emotional or social capital. That will help the brand or the community to gain Word –of- mouth. At the end of our journey, I asked him why he agreed to take the fee I wanted to pay. His answer ‘sometimes, we must first prove our love for people before we reap heavily later’. Do you think I will recommend this guy? Sure I will.

Things always work out when we work it: One vital lesson his life story thought me again was that in his struggle to make meaning in life, a lady (who is a citizen) made up her mind to help me out initially. She became his friend and today they are married with kid. When we have a determination to succeed in building a brand or community, the cosmic energy or what we call God always ensures that it works out.  Especially when we have done our best and are willing to continually innovate, improve and engage quality thinking.

There are other vital lessons to learn here but let me stop here while you share your own experience.

10 Responses to “Branding and online community lessons from a cab driver -2”

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