30 October 2014 0 Comments

Content management& Social media campaign lessons from ‘Akeelah and The Bee’

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


Keke Palmer, conten management Success in content marketing or social media campaigns require a lot of adaptations. It is a continuous school of learning. Those who can not learn, listen and adapt have no future in this field.

Making a headway requires full observation, attention and time. No wonder many run out of gas a few week after their launch. Here is an open field of continuous learning, engagement, tactical moves among others if we must succeed. Great content managers, social mediia campaign managers must have their ears and eyes on the ground searching for new way of doing it. It is not a static field.

I have watched the drama film ‘Akeelah And The Bee’ producedbbh by Atchison Doug for quite sometimes over since it came out in 2006. The characters Laurence Fishburne (Dr Larabee), Akeelah (Keke Palmer), Angela Basset (tanyer Anderson), Steeples Eddie(Derrick-T), Dalia Phillips (Ms Cross), Curtis Armstrong (Mr Welch), Craig Masson (Ted Saunder)among many other casts tell a story about a seemingly unknown  eleven year old girl -Akeelah -ordeals and determination in participating and winning the spelling bee competition.

It will worth the  if  our community members who want to learn something  to create the time to watch this drama. But the purpose of this piece is to take out lessons content managers and social media campaign planners can learn from it.

Planning and strategy: winning national spelling bee is not a joke. It requires lots of inputs, preparations and sound strategy. One must know what it will cost from onset and make allowance for adeqaute resources. This is essential because there are other equally talented and focussed competitors out there who want to take away the price. Part of Akeelah’s strategy was to get a mentor in person of Dr Joshua Larabee who had experience but never made it into the final level. It requires also knowing what to do at each level. As you move ahead in the journey, there will be need for evaluation and realignment of all you need to excel. Adequate preparation, planning and sitting down to draw out plan will help along the line.

Commitment: to excel, a serious commitment to the goal will be in high demand. You cannnot win until you keep the goal and the goal posts, rules in focus. Akeelah had to be Committed to learning news words, stay away from friends if need be for close to nine months. In the course of the journey, there will be distraction and fatigue may set in. The winner keeps the goal in focus and remain Committed to the original plan or where necessary make adjustment.

Remain inspirational: the world is full of its own distractions.  Your audience do not want to hear or feel your prolonged discouragement or pessimism. You got to remain inspirational through out the journey. Being human is normal but a prolonged pessimist position will make people go to the other brands who can inspire them to become better. Being inspirational requires daily dosage of hope and connection. Each team member must come to the table with inspirational idea which can promote engagement and loyalty. Safe your personal struggles for another day. When you achieve success, people will listen.

Make it happen for others: Along the line, we saw the  motivation of Dr Joshua Larabee’s motivation to coach Akeelah. He lost a daughter who could have gone for the spelling bee. But he decided to make it happen for Akeelah. Do not make the total focus of your campaign or content all about you. Make things happen for others and it will happen for you. Do not forget also, in the cause of helping Akeelah, Dr Larabee was able to get his life back. He went back to his teaching position in the university after getting over his sad experience of his loss. What if he had not helped Akeelah?

Do not be afraid to ask for support: Sometimes life is funny. We get support where we can never imagine. Without  emotional support from Akeelah ‘ s mummy and friends, may be she would have given up. Ask for support when you need one. Read, share experience with your core group.

It may take combine efforts of the group, community to win: a team leader who claims he knows it all will fall for nothing. Do not be shy to receive support from team members or other department heads. At the last stage of the competition, every member of Akeelah ‘ s family and neighbour helped in coaching her. Even the so called never do well. Ask influencers and slightly unknown people to help you with a push either by word of mouth or content sharing among peers.

Be good and show kindness: Akeelah might have lost the first position ifshe had not been good to the last final contestant. her previous act of kindness made the boy to deleiberately flaunt the question that could have made him won the first position

Photo credit:healthyceleb

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