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Go Places You’ve Dreamed of

I have been working and playing hockey for six years now and I’m trying to qualify for some international tournaments in the future to represent Canada.

The officer is a tall man with a well defined jaw and full beard. His white T-shirt, long sleeves and baseball cap are all reflective of his service. He has three young children and is proud, he tells me, of those they have. But he also speaks with a lot of pain.

The first time I played hockey, my mom was there. She has been through her entire life. I don’t think she could look me in the eyes and feel how tough it is to get back into the game,” he tells me.

Even today, at my age, I still feel like I can’t do this. I have a family, I want to make them proud, and I want to help them in some way.

From the time of the arrival of the first modern-art museum in Kyoto in 1868 to the opening in the late 19th Century and now, when it is the main attraction of Japanese cities, there has been a continuing push to make Kyoto “one of the worlds cultural centres.

And if they don’t think about how many are to come, they are living their own little dream. They might as well just hope that it comes out.

Journey in Japan“, “the book that I’m reading right now”. Then the man starts writing the book in Japanese. Then we see a Japanese girl reading it. His last name is Hirose, but I have no idea what it is. Maybe it’s a name of someone he met in Japan. This whole thing is ridiculous. So they go to a hotel. They go to a hotel that sells “journey in Japan” books. They go to the “Kanji hotel”. You do not see any real Japanese people anywhere… It has really good beds in the hotel. And they go to the “Journey in Japan” room. In this room, I am told, is a Buddhist temple. They sit and read the book. When you sit down to read the book, there are three people in front of you. They are Japanese, Korean, and a Chinese.

They are talking about how you must be Japanese to appreciate the story. That’s what they say.

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How to Get 2 Years Employment Visa to Work And Live Abroad


You may be wondering is that possible? Yes, very possible. Although it might cost more than regular visa, but this opportunity is borne due to the increase on employment vacancies in some countries in the world.

Recently, restaurants in Canada demanded the country’s immigration office to allow them hire more immigrates to work in their restaurants from outside Canada. This kind of demand is increasing in most countries in UAE, Europe and U.K.

Introduction

Employment visa means that you have a job waiting for you at the country you are traveling to. These jobs may be specific like taxi driving or non specific like restaurant or supermarket jobs. But it means you have a reason for going to that country, and it’s because you have been given a job opportunity.

Without this employment visa, getting ordinary visas to travel has always been an issue in Nigeria. Some have lost their hard earned money through visa racketeers. Some even fell victim of many other vices using visa as a trick to lure victims. And women are turned into sex slaves.

But with this genuine employment visa scheme, you get the job first here in Nigeria for you to work and live abroad before you travel. These kind of opportunities are not common. They are exclusively explored through the right Chanel’s and trusted connections.

And they are not always available. For example, employment visa for taxi driving jobs in both cities of Dubai and Abu Dhabi are only available twice or three times in a year. The companies usually send their own personnel to interview and employ drivers in Nigeria. These kind of jobs pay as much as 500k monthly. That’s why people struggle to fill the slots fast when it’s open.

Nigeria has become the destination for immigrant employment because its citizens are hard working. And the present economic situation in the country has inspired many educated Nigerians to seek lower employment opportunities abroad.

How it Works

If you want to travel abroad, you need to know where you want to go first, it will help decide where to work. Also, how much you have to finance your travel. These kind of travel cost a lot. For example, you will be responsible for your travel expenses, to cover for your documentation, employment visa processing cost, flight ticket, and medical tests where applicable.

An average cost to get employment visa to UAE is between N850,000 to N1 million. That’s average cost for the visa processing. It does not include medical and flight ticket. And most countries cost more than that, like Europe, USA, U.K. And Canada. These ones cost between N1 million to N1.5 million per person.

While some may require you to appear at the embassy to obtain the employment visa, there are also some that you won’t need to appear in person. But the condition of each visa application will be revealed to you.

Also, payments are in two phases. During submission of passport and required documents, a deposit is made to facilitate the documentation process and visa application. The agent won’t use their money to do it for you. It also proves that you are committed to the process.

Sometimes, visa is out and the owner doesn’t have money to balance up the agreed fee. So agent like to collect advance payment to cover the cost of employment visa process to avoid losing their own money if client didn’t pay up the balance when visa is finally out.

Basic Visa Requirements

There are also requirements you must have. One application may be different from another. For example, some may even include CV as basic requirement. While some you may be required to provide full photograph of yourself.

However, one important basic requirement is your Nigerian international passport. You must have a valid passport with at least minimum of 2 years validity. Remember, this is an employment visa for a 2 years period, to avoid having renewal issues abroad. Other requirements will be communicated with each employment visa based on country of interest and specific needs for such employment visa application.

Also, getting Nigerian international passport now is not as simple as it used to be. You will need to have the following to request for Nigerian travel passport now. You may be required to provide your bank BVN number and your national identity number. Express passport renewal or new application cost between N35,000 to N45,000 for 32 and 64 pages respectively. Checkout other requirements at the Nigerian Immigration website.

The national identity number is now a major requirement when obtaining Nigerian international passport. Although, the identification number is issued within 7 days of applying, the identity card itself takes about 3 years. But the passport office only require the identity number for travel passport processing.

Benefits Of Employment Visa

Employment visa is different from ordinary tourist or visiting or student visa. This one has some benefits depending on who is employing you for a job. But generally there are numerous benefits of traveling with an employment visa.

Remember, the reason embassies issue travelers visas is because they have cogent reasons to travel to those countries. Your employment gives you a reason, and not just to travel but to live in that country for that specified period.

● It has immigration status with privileges
● You are not living in that country illegally
● Some employment visa also comes with accommodation
● You already have a job to start earning money once you arrive the country
● It will give you social ID of that country
● It also gives you access to all the benefits enjoyed by every citizen
● You can also visit Nigeria within the period of employment and return back without visa retrain
● Your employment visa is also renewable after the first 2 years if you still want to work
● You stand a chance to apply for citizenship and get it easily
● And many more benefits depending on the country or the company you are employed to work for.

Become Employment Visa Sub-Agent

Do you know someone or people who would like to travel using this employment visa? You can become one of the sub agents and earn your own money. As an agent you get 10 per cent of what is paid by your client after successful processing of their employment visa.

Some agents markup the fee as well but you have to let the super agent know if the money is being paid directly to him or her by the client. But it’s advisable to stick with the commission to avoid making the already high price too high for your clients to afford.

If you want to join the employment visa agency just send us your name, WhatsApp number and your current location where you live to 07087770518 or email: nedu@myblog.com.ng

Action Points For Employment Visa

If you really want to follow my guide here to obtain your employment visa, I have simplified the process for you in six easy to follow steps. In six steps you should have your own employment visa ready and off you go to work anywhere in the world you choose.

Even if you are not the one going. It may be your brother or sister, or children or husband. Whomever is traveling on your account can apply these same steps and achieve their dream.

Although, I strongly advise that you be very careful. There are also fraudulent employment visa ripping off people of their hard earned money. And where you have to make deposit, make sure the amount is not too much to bear if things go wrong.

If possible deal with an agent you can see and know there Address and location. Even if they are sub agents, it’s better than dealing with a super agent that you cannot see. And be patient with your agent. Employment visas are usually done in batches. If all the applicant for that job is not complete or haven’t submitted all their documents or payment on time, it may affect others as well and delay the processing time.

That’s why agents demand part payment before they can include you in the visa list. They don’t ant anyone to delay the process and affect other people’s chances. So, always ensure you pay your deposit quickly to speed up the process for you and others involved.

Step One: Have The Required Documents

The requirements here are basic for applying for employment visa. But they are not generic requirements. Some employment visa process may require specific job description like taxi driving. That means you need to have a drivers license inclusive. It’s from the drivers licence that your ability and experiences in driving is proven. Some may require that your drivers licence to be at least 2 years old.

Also, ensure that the name on your Nigerian international passport is the same you put in every document you filled. And ensure it’s the same name on your bank BVN. The BVN is being used now by most government agencies and including embassies to verify your identity.

If there is any document you cannot provide or don’t have or don’t know how to provide them, always seek your agents advise. Don’t try to forge documents. Your agent should know what to do. He or she is experienced or the super agent will advise on best decision to take.

Step Two: Be Ready with Finance

Money is a major part of obtaining employment visa. The amount you are required to pay covers for the 2 or 3 years visa fee, documentation process, agency processing fee and you need to have money for your flight ticket and basic travel allowance.

It’s advisable to have the full money ready before applying for employment visa. The agents don’t like to lose money. But because you pay part payment, if you couldn’t balance the remaining and the visa expires you alone are at a loss.

So, it’s advisable to make adequate plans for the financing before proceeding for the employment visa.

Step Three: Contact Your Visa Agent

Do you have a reliable employment visa agent? This is where you have to contact one. One thing you must know about visa agents is that you may never get to the super agent that does the visa because they usually work with sub agents who gets the clients for them.

These super agents are usually behind the scene. In fact, most of these super agents are foreign visa officials who work with Nigerian contacts. You may think Nigerians are corrupt but these foreign visa officials also want to make money from these corrupt system while they are here.

But if you don’t have any agent yet, here is our contact. Reach out to us and we would help facilitate or recommend a super agent for you who would help you. Call/Text/WhatsApp: 07087770518 or email: nedu@myblog,com.ng

Step Four: Submit Your Application

Once you have contacted a super agent and have your documents and finances ready, it’s time to submit your documents and visa process deposit fee. If you haven’t submitted your documents and money yet there is no hope for visa.

One thing you must know about visa processing is that there is a thin line between trust and doubt. And because you are not doing the embassy runs yourself, you might have a hard time believing the visa agent.

But you have to understand that in every business risk is also involved. If you haven’t taken any risk you may not succeed. Even the agents don’t trust you with payment that’s why they demand some upfront fees. Because they are so sure about their visa application success but not so sure about your ability to pay the amount involved.

Remember that most people traveling out of the country usually don’t have money. And many of them are sponsored by family and friends. Only a few travelers had their money ready or made it themselves without family and friends support.

Step Five: Follow Up With Your Agent

And once you have submitted and paid, start a weekly follow up. Avoid the fear of calling up your agent everyday, it can be distracting to them. Most employment visa processing takes between 4 to 8 weeks. Some can also take more than that though. So don’t panic when it’s not as fast as you want, as long as you are sure or trust the agent you are dealing with.

But doing a weekly follow up will help you keep abreast with your employment visa process without pestering the agent. And each time you call make it a fact finding interaction. Know what have been done so far, what stage the process has reached and how close they are in securing the employment visa.

At this time you can even enquire about the kind of job they were able to secure. Apart from UAE employment visa which is mostly taxi driving, the others are not usually specific job description. It might be restaurant, club, supermarket and whatever. The specific job details are usually confirmed during the employment visa application process.

Step Six: Pick Up Your Employment Visa

If your visa application is successful, it’s time for pickup. Once your employment visa is out, there are usually fixed date for traveling. Note that the fixed traveling date is not fixed by the visa issuing embassy but the employing company.

These employment visas are done in batches. For example, there may be 100 people being employed at the same time for the same company. And your employment visas are being processed at the same time or within a specified period.

The company would want all of you to travel at the same time. That is also why your agent would like to be the one to arrange for your travel ticket. So that he or she could put all the applicants on the same flight. It makes it easier for the company abroad to pickup all of you from the airport to your accommodation provided.

Conclusion

It’s no doubt that the economic challenges in the country is forcing everyone to look for hope elsewhere. Nigeria has the highest rate of unemployed graduates in Africa, if not in the world.

And as a graduate you may want to have hope of getting a job in Nigeria after your NYSC, but these hope may be dashed few months down the line. Even when you find a job, the pay is usually poor. How can you compare a bank worker salary of N35,000 a month with a taxi driver’s N500,000 monthly in Dubai.

Seeking for employment overseas is a big advantage for graduates who want to explore their full potentials. You might even upgrade your academic qualification when you get there and get even better employment than what brought you to that country. You cannot compare this opportunity with jobs right here.

If you missed where I dropped my contacts to reach me, read this article again and pick up my contacts. This could be the chance you are waiting for to change your life forever.

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How to Create Custom Website, eCommerce & Blogs

Do you know that more than 50 million Nigerians are online daily? Do you know that digital marketing is the tool required to reach these millions of potential customers? How digitally prepared is your business custom website?

Here is a clear plan your an adopt for your business this year to reach more potential customers and make more money. You don’t have to pay hundreds of thousands to learn digital marketing. The cost of digital marketing training is based on the fact that it’s still new and evolving.

Soon, everyone would know what it means to organise digital marketing. And don’t be deceived by the term used, it’s the same things you have been doing online. What you only needed to learn is how to organise them into a marketing arsenal to win more customers.

Introduction

This article is to help you setup three most important digital marketing tools. Marketing is changing everyday. Remember when it was just word of mouth that is required to market your product. Then you needed newspaper, radio and TV ads.

Today it’s Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Google adverts. What makes marketing simple in the past are making it difficult for some entrepreneurs to make money. You need to know these three essential tools that would make your digital marketing efforts worth all the hype and cost put into it.

They are called website. It’s not something you haven’t heard off or know about. However, I’m going to show you why Websites makes more money for you than if you don’t have it. I will also show you how to get them setup cheaper without hiring a web designer.

The first one is e-commerce. The second and third ones are the blog and corporate or custom website. And interestingly a website can have all these three put together on one. And I advise you to have all three on one site. They all work together for your online business.

How Custom Website Works

If you are wondering why you should have a website that has e-commerce functionality and also a blog, here are how digital marketing works. The sole purpose of the website is to show your customers what your business is capable of offering them.

Any website can do that and do it even better than you. And more and more websites are launched, people are getting more confused about which site to trust. And the longer it takes customers to believe you the faster it takes for you to lose them.

What you need is how to engage your customers on your site, give them enough information to encourage them to trust you and help them make a quick decision to get that product or service from you without leaving your website.

Custom Website And Functionalities

Every business owner must think beyond just getting a website with pages and information but this about custom web design. A custom website is more than the regular site. It provides your services in a unique way to your customers.

Imagine if you are a hair stylist, you might think having a website is not essential for your business. But if you have a custom website, you can make your customers book ahead for days they would come to your salon and make their hair.

You can even use that app or site to make them know the price and also make payment to secure the time they book for their hair online. That way your customers know for sure that they can book a specific time for their hair and have it done without fail.

It might not come so cheap, depending on what you want to achieve. But it’s worth developing your own custom website than just getting web pages. A web page would inform your customers, but if it doesn’t help them achieve the result, it won’t be useful or needed next time.

If you are looking for a quote for the custom website email: nedu@fastweb.com.ng or click to go to the website here.

Blog Website And Advantage

You should always add a blog to your website. Sometimes people argue that blogging should be left to bloggers. But who told you certain people are called bloggers. Anyone who can share information online is a blogger. So by having a website you are a qualified blogger.

But blogs are more than a platform for sharing information. It’s the biggest and most important digital marketing tool in the world today. In fact, if you don’t have a blog, you pr business is not doing digital marketing.

A blog is the largest advert platform online. It’s the secret weapon used by digital marketers to drive free targeted online traffic to their business. If you want to keep getting potential customers online, you need to have a blog targeted at your niche market.

E-commerce Website Ordering Functionality

Sometimes when we talk of e-commerce, everyone thinks it’s about selling products online. It’s more than just selling products. It’s a complete fulfilment functionality of your website.

E-commerce features give your website the power to deliver the expectation of your customers. When a customer comes on your site with needs, you can meet that need without any interaction with them. And because your website can deliver on your promise on the go, your potentials are easily converted into return customers without any more marketing from you.

Your business must identify those services it can provide to customers online and enable them with e-commerce. Until your website can do something for your customers, it wouldn’t make any economic sense to have one.

Action Points to Create Custom Website

If you are serious about growing your customer base, you need to target more traffic online. You might think it doesn’t matter now, but it will soon matter. The growth of internet users and growing services online would quickly make new startups kings over those who chose to stay outdated.

Make the right decision now. And the advantage of the internet is the older, the better. Google search engine likes a more former website. It’s like the saying old men and wiser. So, if you start now, you begin a chance of growing older than waiting in the future to start.

Here are the steps you can take now to have your own e-commerce, blog or custom website.

Step One: Buy A Dot Ng Domain Name

Having an online presence would require your own domain name if you plan to control your contents online. Even though you can have a social media presence that doesn’t give you absolute control over your content.

You can only control the contents you have on your own blog or server. And that’s why having your own website on your own domain name is a better option.

You can get a domain name on several websites online, like Godaddy, Namecheap, Domain101, but when it comes to having a dot NG domain name, WhoGoHost is a good option. That’s what I use, and it’s been years now, and they are one of the best.

Step Two: Design Your Website Type

When you want to build a website, it doesn’t have to be like the other websites you know. Think about what you want users to do with your website. The days of just getting web pages are over.

Your website must be an interactive site and can provide visitors with the solution they seek. Unless you are just a blog, don’t build lame websites. It’s better you don’t waste money and waste your customers time on your site than building lame webpages.

Define what you want to achieve online with your website and hire a good web developer to get the job done.

Step Three: Host The Website Don’t Bury It

You may wonder how one can bury website? Well, a lot of sites are buried online, even though their owners don’t even know it. And it starts with the web host. Who hosts your website can help hide it faster than your sloppy designer’s can.

So, I recommend that you choose the best host for your website regardless of cost. Although it cost little these days to host a simple website for a whole year. Here are a few choices for your web host.

And so many others that are too numerous to mention. But you only need one choice, and I have already given four. So you can find what you seek in these four hosting companies.

Step Four: Reach Out To Your Target Market

I’m not supposed to be talking about marketing here. But what’s the good of a website if nobody knows about it. So, I’m pushing for you to pay close attention to promoting your site than just building it.

There are several conventional promotional methods used today to attract traffic to your website. Meant advocate for the use of social media. And that’s not optional either.

But one source of promotion for your website that you shouldn’t overlook is a search engine. It’s not only because it’s free but for the consistency in driving targeted traffic to your website. You cannot substitute this for any other option in driving profitable traffic to your site.

Conclusion

Don’t just seek to have a website, instead get sites that make you money. If you paid for a website that is just infomercial, it wouldn’t be long before you forget that you own a website. And don’t prefer a cheap website over one that cost you money, because good things always cost more.

Plan to invest in an excellent website that is designed for revenue. Whether it’s for e-commerce, or services or advertising, choose a money making site over a poster for your business online.

Nobody wants to just scroll over your website all day. They want to get things done, and your website should help them get things done. Even visa websites now let you make your application and schedule your embassy visit. And if visitors can get more than by visiting your website, you will get more user traffic and save more time and cost as well.

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How to Get A Website – A Newbie Guide

Do you want to keep increasing your business income daily? Then what you need is to get a website. I know most businesses are on social media. But the benefits of a website far outweighs that of social media.

Do you know some websites gets over 2 millions visitors monthly? There are websites that gets more than that. I’m just using the Nigerian websites as case study. In the US, some websites gets more than that number visitors monthly. I know of websites that gets over 50 million monthly visitors.

The issue is not even that they get these visitors monthly. But that they get them for FREE! Yes, it’s for free. And these huge amount of free online traffic keeps coming to their websites every month without end.

Introduction

Don’t get me wrong, this kind of traffic doesn’t happen overnight. But the fact that it happens should get your attention. The primary reason that it’s remotely possible is because the owners have a website.

You can’t guarantee these number of visitors on social media platforms. Don’t misunderstand it. They are not number of Followers. These are visitors that search engines like Google sent to their websites every month for free.

On social media, if you don’t do anything at all, you may never get any visitor to your page. But that’s not so with websites. Once you start building your site, if you are using a blog, the journey for free online visitors has just started.

How it Works

If you know how the Internet work, you will see why that is even possible. The internet is a network of computers. The primary reason for this network is for sharing information. And the site at the centre of this information sharing in Google.

Google indexes all the websites existing in the world to help those looking for information online to find it easily. All you do is enter some related search strings to the information you are looking for. And Google will match that search strings to related information in its database.

Whatever it finds related is displayed in a hierarchical order. You can now open the reference websites to verify it contains what you are looking for. And Google does all that for free without asking the website owners to pay for this listing or the display in the search.

How to Qualify

Any website is qualified to be listed in Google search. And your website can benefit from this free listing from Google for life. But if you don’t have a website, you may never get listed by Google.

Although, Google list social media accounts as well. But such listings are limited to just the social media handle. The contents are not listed as separate information. However, websites get separate listing for each page of information it contains.

For example, if you have a 200 page website, each of the 200 pages will get a separate listing on Google for your website. That increase as well your chances of getting more online visitors to your site.

Why Websites, And Not Social Media

There is a reason why Google prefers listing websites and its pages than social media contents. Google is selling itself as an answer to any question anyone may have in the world. And website information provides better information over what’s on social media.

Most of the information on social media cannot be trusted. Their authenticity cannot be proved to be always true. Also, the consistency and topics relating to a website can be gauged but not so consistent with most individual social media accounts.

And the fact that Google is a compendium of information, the authenticity of what’s it’s giving out should also be valuable and not trashy. So, it picks website that meets all the basic requirement of a source of authentic and useful library of solution.

Action Points to Get A Website

If you don’t have a website you will not benefit from Google free traffic. And because your business is a specific niche, you will easily get indexed by Google. Although, the cost of website is also an issue for most business owners. But there are also options to get a full functional websites cheaper and keep upgrading it as it grows.

Fastweb provides websites for SME’s at an affordable price. Depending on your type of business and website needs, Fastweb can create a site within your budget. You can visit their website here or contact them on Call/WhatsApp; 07087770518.

Here are a few option of the types of websites Fastweb designs:

  • School website
  • Church website
  • Corporate website
  • E-commerce website

Step One: Chose A Domain Name for Your Website

To start building your website you will need to choose a name for it. Choosing a domain name for your website is not that simple anymore. There are over one billion websites on the internet. That means there are more domains registered.

That doesn’t mean you can’t find a name for your website. It’s only that you may not find one on the major domain name extension. You can read more about domain name extensions and what they are here.

So, if the name you chose can’t be find under major domain extension, you can check with local extensions like dot ng or co for example. Popular domain names includes Amazon.com, Google.com, eBay.com, citisavis.com, etcetera.

Step Two: How to Design Your Website

The popular option is to hire a web developer. And that is not cheap at all. A simple website cost between $500 to $1,500 to build. If your exchange that in naira it’s not small figure at all.

And the web developer will do the following and keep all your money. He will buy a web theme from popular theme markets. Make a few changes on it to match your request, and deliver it to you for $500 or more.

However, you can use a web design consultant like Fastweb who will help you get the best website theme for around $70. Customize it for about $50. And help upload it to the host server for just $30. That’s a total of $150. You get a savings of $350.

Step Three: Where to Host It

When you have finished designing a website you will need to buy a web hosting plan. A hosting plan is like a house rent. You pay to live in the house. The same way your website pays rent to live in a host.

A hosting plan is not costly at all. Although some web design companies will ask you to pay as much as $500 annually. But you don’t need to spend that much. What you need is a hosting plan as cheap as N1,500 monthly. That’s about N18,000 annually. That’s affordable for a small business for one year.

If you are using Fastweb as the consultant for your website, they will also help you with getting the cheaper web host. If not, any other option may be costlier. You can also get the web host yourself by clicking here.

Step Four: How to Get Google Traffic

Once your website is designed and hosted on a server, you are getting ready for Google free traffic. But that is just the beginning. The next step is to update the content of your website to suit your business type.

Content is king when you are looking for Google free traffic. You will need now to start upgrading your new site with revealing information about your business. If you can’t write better copy for your business, hire someone to do it for you.

It’s better you invest in good content because that’s what will guarantee the visitors that comes to your site will patronize you. So, don’t see the cost as unnecessary. It will make money for you.

Conclusion

If you want to make money online for a long time you will need a website. I know it’s good to have social media. But the problem is if you stop posting on your social media the traffic also stops. And the traffic is not free.

You need to build a better and larger traffic for your business. Even more so, you need visitors traffic that is consistent. You don’t want customers to come today and tomorrow they won’t come.

You need to get your own website design for you cheaper using web design consultants like Fastweb. Once you have your website designed for you, the next thing is to now sit back and wait for the visitors to start pouring into your business from everywhere around the world.

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3 Tips To Plan Better New Year Resolutions

Do you believe in starting a new year strong? Do you know that how you begin a new year can impact on the overall outcome for you? Well, have you considered having new year resolutions?

Many people don’t know that the year doesn’t have any plan for them.They are hoping for what the year can bring, but they don’t know it comes as like a blank Cheque, as new as the year.

So, what are you going to do to make this new year the kind of year you want to see? Yes, you have the power to decide how the year will be for you. But you can’t do that without planning.

I know many people make new year resolutions. That’s fine but not good enough. Have you seen any successful business built on a wishful decision?

I don’t think so. You need to have a solid business plan to determine the outcome of the business. You too can start your new year like a business with a better idea. And don’t think that it doesn’t matter.

Believe me, it does. Any success that is not built on a solid plan would eventually fail, including your life.

Understandin New Year Resolutions

Wikipedia define New Year is the time or day at which a new calendar year begins and the calendar’s year count increments by one.

Now, I’m welcoming you to this new year. If you follow my counsel in this article, you will be much prepared for the year. You need to understand what a new year represents.

It’s like a newborn. And if you treat it like that, you stand a better chance of having a prosperous year than someone who didn’t.

If you have observed the relationship between a grandmother and her grandchildren, you will understand what starting afresh can invoke in a person. In a new year, you can see all your past mistakes.

And you have a renewed hope to get it right this time. It’s like when all your sins have been forgiven. And you have learnt your lesson. You just want to do the right things going forward.

However, you might know your mistakes and still repeat those mistake again in a new year. But not identifying those mistakes increases your chances of repeating them again.

That means, by knowing those mistakes you have identified the things that won’t help you succeed in the new year.

How it Works

Inasmuch as the past year has mistakes, life has a way of giving you a clean sheet to write a new chapter of your life. Even though that won’t just erase the past but it helps you to create a present that makes up for the past.

And since you cannot change the past, create a future that won’t remember the past.

And one thing you must know about mistakes of the past is that it directly or indirectly have something to do with other people. Yes, because we live in a world that is largely dependent on others. Everything you do in this life will impact on someone else, whether good or bad.

If you know that’s how things work, it shows you the major areas where you can change your year to be your dream Year. Even if you think it’s just about you, it will also help you become a better version of yourself to others around you.

It doesn’t really matter so much how we see it, any change you make in your life will benefit others you don’t even know.

Understand How You Work

That brings me to the most important point in this new year epistle. You need to understand how you work. I don’t mean the work you do in the office but the actions of yourself. The things you do are what defines you more than what you think of yourself.

I know everyone has their personal opinion of who they think they are like. That’s okay but that doesn’t describe you if it’s just an opinion. If you want to know who you really are, the Bible gave us an idea. The things that occupies your mind the most are what defines who you really are.

But some people still don’t understand themselves from that perceptive. They think it’s just their thought.

The best way to be sure about your person is to identify those things that you spend the most money on. Yes, those are the things that define who you are or what’s most important in your life.

Where is Your Treasure?

The theory of where your treasure is there is where your heart is also have been proven to be true for all time. Everyone spend their treasure on the things they value the most.

If you have been in love with a girl before, you will understand this theory better. You just want to please her in everything.

The same principle applies in starting successfully. The things you spent the most part of your income defines what you did in the past year. And if you want to change what you will do in the new year, just change what you will be spending more money on.

It should show how you are going to spend your money in the new year and what you will spend those money on. Most importantly, how much you are willing to spend to get the exact kind of result you seek.

Action Points for The New Year

When you understand this secret of planning, you will always have a better year every new year.

The years wouldn’t be like mystery any more. You can know how each year will start and how it will end for you successfully.

The most relevant point I want to make here is that you are in control. The year has nothing to offer but what you demand of it. You are the one to create the kind of year that you want.

And it shouldn’t stop at new year resolutions. Put some definite action plan to it.

Tip #1: Start with a Plan for The Year

If you normally keep your new Year resolutions on your mind, you won’t probably remember it after sometime. That also accounts for the reason many people jettison their new year resolutions few months after the new year celebration.

But your plan is there to help you stay on course with achievable timelines.

Making new year resolutions and keeping it till the end should be a task and not just a memory. The right thing to do it to make it into a year plan.

What are the things you have resolved to do this year, put them together into a workable plan. I would rather advise that you adopt the business plan approach.

Until it’s a plan you may not actualise the new year resolution. You must also remember that as the year progresses, a lot of things will be coming your way. Most of it you didn’t anticipate at all.

And in the process, you may begin to change your vision for the year. It might even be problems that comes up and you know what could happen in such a situation.

Tip #2: Have Definite Lines of Action

And when I suggested it to be a plan, I don’t mean just a written document. Anyone can write down what they want to do but not remember after some days.

Make your idea into a dream project. And it doesn’t have to be a bogus document that you won’t be able to read in any jiffy.

It’s your plan. You don’t require it for a bank loan. So make it what you will easily scan through.

In fact, make it as simple to read as possible. If it’s not a plan you can read in less than 30 minutes, delete and write a new one.

I like to write my plan with the following contents, what I want to do in the new year, how I want to do them and the kind of results I want to get from it. Also, in how I want to do them I factor in the cost.

I always want to cost my plan of action. That way I can help my vision to comprehend the actualisation. If the cost is way too much for the result, it can also mean the strategy might be faulty.

So, I look for a new plan.

Tip #3: Define Results Before You Act on Plans

I don’t subscribe to any plan that you can’t see the result even before you acted it. Think of it this way, the only thing that drives you to action is the expectation.

If there is no expectation, nobody will do anything in this world. We all would have loved to remain in the garden of Eden and eating fruits all day.

And don’t be afraid to attach financial terms to your results. Be good with and comfortable with big figures. Nobody is going to arrest you for having a big dream or even for not achieving it.

So don’t stop yourself either. Go for the gold like they say in the olympics, even if you didn’t get it at the end. But don’t limit your chances just because you think it’s too good for you. Nothing is too good for you.

You should only take action on a plan you can see the result. Of what use is labour without wages? Nobody will go to work for one more day if salaries were to be removed.

You shouldn’t waste your time as well if there will be nothing to show for it.

Conclusion

The new year will keep coming as along as we have dates and time. So, the earlier you know to plan for them the better for you. Maybe you don’t know, your life would have been a lot better, easier, happier and more successful if you have been planning your year for the last ten years.

Why do you think companies are more successful that most people’s lives? It’s because companies are built on planning. But most people’s life don’t have any plan. And what better time to plan and replan your life than in a new year.

If you want to see your best life, start with new year resolutions plan. Life is not a mystery. Anything that’s not planned for will not succeed.

Do you know it took God over 4,000 years to provide salvation? Imagine God working on a plan of salvation for mankind for over 4,000 years. If God needs to work with a plan, your probably need it the most.

P.S: Comment below with your thoughts about new Year Resolutions. I will be happy to reply to your suggestion, views or question. 

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How to Plan Your Christmas Message for 2018

Do you know it’s essential to plan your Christmas message? You may not have thought about it before, but I think you should do this year. There are several reasons you should plan your Christmas message. The first one is because Christmas is the most crucial time of the year.

Although, many still think that sending Christmas message is not essential. Well, that depends on who you are, how you value your contacts and the purpose of your message. Remember, just because it’s Christmas doesn’t mean every Message must be about Christ. Of course, Christ should be part of your message but your purpose may be slightly different.

For example, if you a politician sending Christmas message might be to connect with your target voters. Even though your message may be about the birth of Christ the Messiah, your purpose will be to appeal to their conscience concerning your interest in the coming elections. And there is a different purpose depending on who is sending the Christmas message.

Understanding Christmas Message

I don’t want to assume that you don’t understand the reason for Christmas Message. But I will like to make a little emphasis on that to you. The best time of the year is the right time to get everyone’s attention with a simple Christmas message. And it doesn’t even matter if you are not a Christian. Well, if you are not, I strongly recommend this book for you: How to Find God. It will help you know how to write the best Christmas message this season.

Christmas is a season for the whole world. It’s not about Christians alone, even though most Christians think it’s for only them. Jesus didn’t come for Christians alone. He died for both Christians, Muslims, pagan, Hindu, etcetera. There is nobody in the world today that Jesus didn’t die for.

So, everyone has a stake at Christmas. It’s your season too, and you should be celebrating with a Christmas message to your loved one, friends and coworkers. Don’t let anyone deceive into thinking that your religion does not believe in Christmas. Take this time and have some fun and share it with a message of love.

Why You Should Plan A Christmas Message?

I don’t want to give such crab as Planning is essential. You already know that. And I don’t even want to tell you that some people will be reading or hearing your Christmas message. Of course, you should that by now.

However, I want to show you that your planned message would save more lives this Christmas. The current economic situation in the country has caused more damage to the people already. Hope has gone out of the window. Most people are living in abject poverty. Hunger is so much in the land. I can go on and on to narrate to you the lost cases of Nigerians right now.

And if you just push out any kind of message without taking a deep thought, you will be sending the wrong message even though it’s for Christmas. You need to be careful how your words sound so as not to make a false impression. Instead, chose words that would sort the pain, calm the nerves and whet the appetite. Don’t forget this words, whatever you say will be used against you in the courts of human conscience.

How Do You Write Christmas Message?

But how do you even begin to write this message? That would depend on who you are, the purpose of your message and the people you are sending it to. If I can suggest, use voice instead of text. There is voice call technology in use now called robocall that can send a prerecorded Christmas message directly to phone users.

The reason for voice is so that people don’t see it as a random message. They will assume it’s preplanned and that you really thought much about them. It’s simple human psychology. Also, by hearing your voice, it will communicate the spirit of your message more than text can do.

However, if you can’t afford the cost of calling many people even with robocall, still use the text message. But make these few changes in your communications. Use the words WE and YOU. Avoid using the personal noun I, myself, my family, my team, etcetera. Bond with the people in your message as much you can and feel like one of them.

Who to Send Christmas Messages to?

I don’t want to assume that you know who you want to send Christmas messages to this season. Even though you should know since you should also consider the purpose for which you are sending it. One thing your goal does is to help you define who to send the message this season.

Please note that you don’t have to send to everyone. In short, you can’t even communicate with everyone. There are over 7 billion people in the world. And Nigeria has over 198 million of them. Your circle or target should be the ones to get your message. And I don’t mean your social media circle alone. I’m looking at a wider circle, based on your purpose.

For example, your company may choose to send to all the customers that patronised you this year. Although, I will strongly advise against using social media as your primary Christmas message platform. You should know by now that the number of people who see your messages on social media has been cut down by the platform owners.

There is one thing you should do. Write down the groups of people you would like to send a Christmas message to this year. And behind each group, add your purpose for connecting with them. Estimate their number, what platform you want to use and evaluate the cost implication.

When Should You Send Christmas Messages?

I Don’t think this should have come up. But considering some findings, when sending your Christmas message it’s now essential when you post it. It can mar or make the purpose of your message. And you will love to connect with people when they are not distracted or busy to read your message.

Also, if you want to use text message service like bulk SMS, you should know that NCC regulation prohibits sending publicity messages like that between the hours of 9pm and 6am. The operators equally shut down their servers for bulk SMS within this period of the day. Any message sent won’t be delivered.

Moreover, your message is better sent when your target audience would be in a position to invest their time in reading it. Like when people are commuting to work. During such time their spirit is open and ready for opportunities. Also, during lunch hour is another right timing.

But if your platform is for calls, whether using robocall, your timing might be different than text messages. You need to call when they are in a position to answer the call. If they are committing, it might be noisy. And if they are having lunch, it might direct, and they won’t give their full attention to your call. The right time is during office hours when they are expecting customers to call them.

Action Points for Christmas Message

Here is a brief summary of the action you can take to send your Christmas messages. Take all the ideas I shared with you in this article and apply them following the points below. And whatever you do, say a Merry Christmas to someone this season.

1. Chose a date to send out your Christmas message
2. Define your purpose
3. Chose your platforms
4. Pick your audience
5. Write your words
6. Send your Christmas message
7. Respond to every reply with appreciation

Conclusion

Planning your Christmas message can be fun and exciting. Although if you are just sending to your family and friends, it may require proper planning. But if it’s for business or especially now that the election is around the corner, it’s essential to plan.

Also, sending messages to many numbers of people for business wishes or elections campaign is a job you should only give to professionals. There are several professionals companies to handle your Christmas messages. For an election campaign, I recommend Fastweb Internet Services. They are the best. But for individual messages, you can go with Gbestsms.

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This Song Will Hit You From ST. GREG in 2019

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How to Hire a Blogger in Nigeria

Do you have a website or blog but don’t know how to keep updating it with the latest information? Do you know you can hire a blogger in Nigeria? It’s not different from how you can hire anyone to work for you. But its only slightly different because you have to find the right person that can add value to your blog or website.

If you have a website or blog, it needs to be regularly updated. I write at least three blog posts every week. Some bloggers write more than that. But at least you should post a new blog weekly on your site.

The value of your site increases as you add new blog posts. It’s like a building. The more blocks you add to the building, the more the house takes better shape. And in this case, your website is improved each time you add a new blog post or web page.

That doesn’t mean you should post too many blogs at the same time. Just let the content grow with a defined plan that works for you. And that is why I’m recommending that you learn how to hire a blogger in Nigeria.

Description

The main job of a blogger is primarily to create blog contents. And it can be referred to in many ways as blog posts, or blog articles, or web articles, web copy, just content, or web content, or even blog content. A blogger can also blog for personal use, or for businesses, news, networking or other professional means.

How to hire a blogger may not be the same for everyone. This article is not offering you a global standard on how to engage bloggers. The ideas in this post are to help you form the basic concept to hire bloggers when you need one.

If you are running your website on your own, it might just be right to outsource some of these things online. There are many sites where you can find freelance bloggers to help you handle your website. One of the most popular ones is Fiverr and Upwork. And it can be cheaper as well.

But if it’s a business entity website, there may be the need to have an in-house blogger. Having a blogger working for your company may be helpful in many ways than outsourcing. However, if your site needs minimal update work once in a while, you may stick with the outsourcing option.

How it Works

In the world of internet of things, a website that is not updated is like an online graveyard. It smells of death with stale news. And that can rebuff search engines like Google. It also means you won’t be seeing much online traffic to your website. Even if you do get some traffic, your visitors won’t find any useful value on your site. And search engine pushes your website to the bottom of SERP.

Giving your website or blog a regular update will make it both users and search engine friendly. It may not even be to add new information but to update the existing ones with current information about your business.

And if your website is old, you may have to upgrade to better website theme. A good WordPress theme doesn’t cost so much. You can also hire a blogger to handle that for you. And if you are not using WordPress for your website backend, you need to migrate to WordPress. There are so many reasons WordPress is ideal for running your website or blog.

It gives you easy access to update your blog. You can also provide access to others and control their access and what they do on your site. And you can remove that access when you are done with them.

The Benefits of Hiring a Blogger

And before you ask about the cost of hiring a blogger in Nigeria, let’s consider the benefits above the price. The internet works by this singular honour, content! A blogger is a content creator. Hiring a blogger means you want to create good blog contents for your site. It’s going to add more value than hiring a marketer. The full benefits are listed in the blogger ob description.

A marketer can help you sell today but hiring a blogger helps you sell for all time. A professional blogger must be competent in content marketing. That’s what makes a professional blogger different from someone who merely owns a blog and posts to it regularly.

It also makes the value of a blogger unquantifiable. There is no set amount you must pay for the services of a blogger. But depending on your country, you may decide what’s right for you. A blogger in Nigeria can earn between $500 to $5,000 monthly.

And professional bloggers would work from their convenience, using their own devices, internet access, and some personal blogging tools. That saves your company some cost associated with running a full blog department. These guys already have a setting that works, you just leverage, and not learning the ropes from the ground floor.

Important Job Description of a Blogger

According to a blog post on Sokanu Blog on what a blogger does, it listed over 35 job description for a blogger. I’m going to be selecting most of them for you here. But if you want to read the full list just go to their website here.

Also, note that I do not subscribe to all the items it listed there but it’s also an excellent way to start. I also starred some to show that I accepted it as partially true. But the ones I don’t agree with entirely or on a higher percentage, I dropped some from the list as well. That doesn’t mean Sokanu’s list is wrong. It just that it went too far in some descriptions.

Here is my edited list from Sokanu blog on the variety of things that bloggers can do to support their blog:

The Blogger Job List

  • create fresh, original content a few times a week
  • keep up with all changes on the social media platforms***
  • update their credits page with all their media and significant mentions and all the guest posts they have written***
  • share their content on social media, encouraging conversation
  • manage comments, spam, and read and reply to each one***
  • guest blog once or twice a month by creating fresh, engaging content for another blog***
    * Respond to comments on every guest post***
  • engage with any reader who contacts them or asks a question***
  • run the back-end smoothly; such as their publishing platform, plugins, design, code***
  • optimise their top pages, top blog posts, service, and product pages***
  • research opportunities that come to their ways such as advertisers and promotional inquiries***
  • communicate with their peer bloggers and support each other
  • Build relationships online and offline with their community***
  • give interviews
  • beta test for plugins and work with developers to test applications on their site
  • set up consulting services with their blogging knowledge and any other skills and experience to help others***
  • set up their newsletter, and are smart with their email marketing strategies***
  • set up and support a Facebook fan page, and understand that some people only use Facebook but can still benefit from their message***
  • set up a strong LinkedIn presence and engage in groups and offer value to conversations***
  • educate themselves continually with free webinars, online courses, and tons of other material in their niche and about blogging, business, and marketing in general
  • do the bookkeeping if their blog is their business and if they have set it up as a business
  • take care of the legal stuff like Trademark, set up an S-Corp or LLC or a sole proprietorship and find an accountant for the taxes
  • attend conferences at least once a year and learn the latest and greatest as well as build new connections***
  • speak to a group about their expertise or share their story and prepare well for that speech in advance***
  • set up a podcast and expand their audience and their brand by reaching people who prefer an audio medium***
  • track their stats using Google Analytics, make sure Google can find them, where their referrals are coming from and what is happening on their site
  • Collaborate on projects with other bloggers such as an eBook or other creations
  • create their own products; this can be in the form of a product with audio interviews, a guidebook, a Kindle book, an e-course, or a video series. (This can take the most amount of time, but once it is done, it gains credibility and potential income.)

Action Points to Hire a Blogger In Nigeria

Hiring a blogger in Nigeria who may not add value to your business will be a waste of time and resources, so, it’s ideal to take precaution and hire a blogger who knows better than you may even need.

The important aspect of blogs in today’s digital marketing is making its content of the business relevant online. I have looked at some of the things you may want to consider before you hire a blogger in Nigeria.

Step One: Check Ability to Write Compelling Blog Post

The first test is the ability to write. And that’s not to measure if the person went to school and can read and write. Ability to write may include the ability to create content out of a word. For example, if I give you the word SMILE, can you create an enjoyable and sellable content from it? The persons’ power to articulate is the key to content creation.

Also, the style of writing may be needed as well. How convincing does the person write? A marketing content should be able to sell the idea better. If it’s lame, it won’t convert your visitors to customers. So, hiring a blogger with great writing skill is one of them.

You may also consider language if you are dealing with different countries. You should hire a blogger who can write in the primary language of your blog. Most bloggers use English, but that doesn’t mean there are no French blogs. Although hiring a blogger in Nigeria may limit your language to just English, unless you are considering local dialect blogs like Pidgin, Yoruba, Igbo, Hausa or any other local language.

Step Two: Must Understand Content Marketing

Selling online is no longer for dummies. If you must succeed online, you have to create attention-grabbing contents for your website or blog. Content is king for online marketing. And the chief creators are bloggers. Hiring a blogger who has the gift of content creation in a pulsating storyline will win you more customers than a marketer would do.

People love stories, and that’s why novels are the most widely read fiction in history. Even though the stories are not real, readers are willing to delve into that illusion and are satisfied. You can craft compelling contents with stories about your product, or business and visitors will keep coming back for more.

Hire a blogger in Nigeria with the skills of a storyteller and a good one will be worth the cost.

Step Three: Must Have SEO Knowledge

Search engine optimisation technic is not an essential need to hire a blogger, but if you can find one that understands the technics why not. It costs a lot in website optimisation. If your blogger can do that, it saves you tones of capital and ensures your contents are getting you the right online traffic from search engines. That doesn’t mean you should have an SEO agency to manage your in-depth online optimisation. A blogger can do the basic on-site SEO optimisation but not deep offsite as the SEO agency would do for you.

Some SEO companies charge as much as $500 monthly to optimise websites for on-site SEO. This would come free for you if your blogger has such knowledge. And it’s not hard to find one these days. It’s almost a requirement now for bloggers to learn digital marketing, of which SEO is one of the skills.

Step Four: Must Understand SMM (Social Media Marketing)

Hire a blogger with social media marketing skills. I know some businesses have social media guy. But most social media hires don’t understand other aspects of digital marketing like SEO and blogging. But if you hire a blogger with SEO and SMM skills, you kill many birds with one stone.

It’s different from social media influencers. You can still have influencers. But hire a blogger with skills that would enhance your social media marketing. And as the Facebook algorithm changes, combining social media marketing with search engine optimisation will make sure a high return on your investment over time.

Step Five: Must Know How to Use WordPress

The crucial part for hiring a blogger in Nigeria will be to blog. WordPress is the number one blogging platform. Therefore hire a blogger who knows how to use WordPress. Unless your website is built on a different blog engine than WordPress.

However, I would recommend WordPress for both website and blog. It makes a lot of things so easy to add on your site. If you know about web design, you can buy a WordPress theme as low as $50 and immediately transform your website into a new model without the high cost of web design.

Fastweb, one of my online businesses is providing free websites for every local government council in Nigeria. And there are 774 local government areas in the country. The free package includes only the site plus other benefits. The local government will provide their domain name and web hosting account. We will design a professional website for free and train a staff of the LGA on how to update, edit and manage the site and its blog. Skills transfer is a part of the concept.

Even these sites, when completed, will create 774 jobs in the LGA’s for bloggers in Nigeria. We also going to extend it to public schools. The idea is to create many public websites to offer more jobs for bloggers in Nigeria. And you can help by nominating your local government or schools in your area for this free website offer. Yes, we are also giving out free websites to public secondary schools.

Step Six: Must Be Familiar With Your Business

Another critical step is to hire a blogger who is familiar with your kind of business. Blogging is a creative way to use content to sell businesses online. And a great blogger must be familiar with the industry to create compelling blog contents that can attract the right target customers.

Hiring a blogger that knows the how, why and what of your business will add more value to your target audience. But how are you going to see a blogger in Nigeria with such knowledge of your business? That may be difficult, right? An excellent digital agency can act as your intermediary to hire a blogger in Nigeria. You can also advertise for one on social media like Facebook.

Well, you can also ask that they offer a content guide for your business. However, this may be too much to ask for. Some clients would demand such and still not use the blogger. And that’s a waste of the bloggers time. Maybe conducting a little interview would help. But if you find a blogger that knows his job as a blogger, he may not have to know your business to create high content for you.

Also, you have to create the path that will guide the blogger. Since it’s your business, you should compile all the significant topic areas in your industry that you want to cover in your blog. This will help the blogger you hire to begin the journey of being more familiar with your business. You can also ask to see other jobs done by the blogger in Nigeria to certify the content quality, the blogger’s grasp of the topic and the presentation style.

Step Seven: Must be Diligent and Trusted

This part is a significant criterion. Blogging is a serious business. Creating high-quality contents and thought-provoking information doesn’t come without hard work. You need to hire a blogger who is diligent and trusted enough to deliver better content.

One of the critical aspects of being diligent is time. If the blogger doesn’t deliver on time, you have to start considering hiring another blogger. It doesn’t matter if the job doesn’t need urgency. If the blogger is missing out on the timeline, it won’t be hard to miss out on critical information that’s valuable to the topic. You shouldn’t make excuses for an in-diligent blogger.

Conclusion

Hiring a blogger in Nigeria may seem simple, but it’s not. The best bloggers are all working for themselves. Blogging is one of the fastest ways to earn residual income on the internet. And you can’t be good at it and still want to work for pay. That’s why most of those who still work for others are mostly good writers but not good bloggers.

Although, there are still few great bloggers who are working for others. That’s why it’s a bit challenging to find them because those who hired them are not letting go of them. But you can hire a blogger on a freelance. Or better still on a contract basis for a time.

You should know that if you want to build real free online traffic to your website, you don’t need a marketer, what you need is a blogger. Your company can hire a great marketer to sell your product but to bring in online customers, it’s not marketers that do the job better, but bloggers.

Even in the world of digital marketing, the most impactful area is content marketing, of which blogging is an integral part. You need to hire a blogger now if you want to build your business online for the next wave of customers.

Recommendations

You should also read the following articles on Search Engine Optimisation and Digital Marketing.

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How to Win Elections in Nigeria – Beginners Guide!

Do you know not too young to run bill has opened up opportunities for young people to win elections in Nigeria? But if you don’t know how to win an election, the law will be of no use for Nigerians, considering the state of politics and those now involved in it.

For most young people, you must have lots of money to win an election in Nigeria. Since that may be true, but it’s not entirely true. You should have a good strategy on how to win elections if you want to contest. And from my careful research, it’s easier for a serious candidate who what to make a difference to win an election without resort to godfathers and rigging.

Most aspirants don’t even know how many polling units INEC is using for the elections. It’s pure information that makes the difference between winning and losing and the electoral information is always available at INEC offices or online on their website.

You have to know your numbers. You can only win by a majority vote. So, you should know how many votes are available, how many are within your reach and how many give you the winning. It’s all this calculation that should make you want to contest. And if you also realise that you stand no chance, it’s not the end yet. You can learn strategies on how to meet these goals within the timeframe possible. If it means waiting for the next elections, then you have ample time to plan your way to the top.

Insight on How to Win Elections in Nigeria

An aspirant should be acquainted with basic electoral facts. What you may not know, is that election is like a business. The facts make all the difference. And if you have the facts, you can strategies better than your opponent, the same way companies compete in the marketplace.

In a population of over 198 million people, only 84 million is registered to vote in this election. That leaves us with 114 million people who cannot vote in the coming elections. If you remove those who are underage by law, we may still have over 50 million who should vote but cannot vote because they didn’t register. Well, for now, what we have is 84 million. Let’s hope we all can vote by the end of the polls this time.

However, these registered voters are spread across the country and in 119,973 polling units. You can rationalise this figure to arrive at the number of polling units for your ward, local government, senatorial district and the entire state.

However, figures from the past elections also suggest that a high percentage of registered voters don’t vote in elections. In the 2015 elections, such as a total of 29,432,083 votes were recorded in the presidential, out of 67,422,005 registered voters that year. That is just 43.65% of registered voters. That leaves 56.35% voting power untapped.

How Elections in Nigeria Work

Currently, Nigeria elections follow a simple pattern. It starts with registered political parties and INEC release of electoral timetable. Then, the expression of interest by political aspirants through their different political parties and the parties conduct election primaries to choose those to fly their party flags at the general elections.

These successful candidates are then submitted to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for fielding in the coming elections. Then, the campaign begins. And don’t forget the interlude when aspirants that lost in the party primaries now start decamping to other political parties in search of a free ticket to contest. Or the usual mouth-bombs that go back and forth, for or against personal and party interests.

When all that is over Nigerians will go to the polls to vote and what determines who wins is measured by everything that happened on or before or after this time. And that is what makes an election successful.

And don’t forget the role of the courts in deciding who eventually won the elections. Aspirants now move from party infighting to cross-party litigations, to prove evidence of other party rigging machines. But meanwhile, INEC is allowed to swear in elected officials while the court case lasted.

Understanding the Politics of Representatives

One of the challenges of politics in Nigeria is the lack of representation. While we can blame our elective officers, we should also see where the electors miss it. You should know that an elected office is there on your behalf. That means he or she is there to do your agenda. But what is your agenda?

Many constituencies don’t have any agenda for their elective officers. They assume the elected officials should know what they want. It’s this lack of vision for the constituencies that is causing the problems of development in the country. If communities can develop their own vision and development plans, we will choose the right people to represent us.

No community should support candidates on party basis. It should always be based on the developmental projects of the community. If anyone what to represent you, it shouldn’t be the people’s choice, instead of the aspirant’s choice. And if you don’t like the achievement of one representative, you can recall or re-elect new ones.

The Local Government Election

The structure of Governor’s appointing LGA chairperson is a fraud. The current structure of even conducting LGA elections is not beneficial to the Nigerian project. The communities should not be left out of local government elections and that of the councillor.

The system should encourage participation of the locals in a politics they can own. The LGA election should be changed from partisan politics to local politics. Giving the power to select and conduct an election to the locals for the government at the local levels.

It will not only bring development faster to the communities but also cut the burden of over dependents on the state government. It will even break the powers of the governors on local government control and place it in the hands of the local communities.

By so doing, the communities can develop a comprehensive governing policy through the local government. Each of the districts making up the local government will form an executive can will conduct the elections with the help of INEC as the electoral umpire. And using the zoning formula, they can create a level playing field for all communities involved.

The Winning Formulas

And if you think the parties just plan to rig without trying to win other ways first, you will be deceiving yourself. To win an election is not only through rigging. In fact, rigging is just a small percentage of the winning strategy in the Nigeria elections. The not too young to rule aspirants should not focus on rigging and be discouraged from contesting. The biggest electoral fraud is the no-show voters and not the rigging machines.

Remember, the election records the number of voters that take part, including voided votes. There is some level of censored figures that still exist to checkmate rigging. That doesn’t mean politicians won’t try to rig. But there are lots of considerations that go into rigging or else you will have your day in court.

So, I’m going to be looking at some of these factors that play huge roles on how to win an election. And these are what smart politicians calculate when strategising. Now, you will know why God-fathers exist. It’s not necessarily to rig elections. They offer election-winning strategies that make them indispensable to ambitious aspirants.

And your winning strategy should be well calculated before you venture into politics. The factors that make aspirant queue behind god-fathers shouldn’t arise. Independent candidates can win elections in Nigeria if only they know what to do. There are too many chances available in Nigeria for nobodies to win elections, especially when too many politicians are more focused on rigging alone.

Categories of Voters in Nigeria

The first strategic planning for winning elections is to know your voters. It’s the same way businesses segment their customer base in the know your customer’s assessment. If you don’t have a proper Voters assessment, you can’t win an election in Nigeria. You have to know what makes up your electoral victories if you plan to win.

And to know the different categories of voters would help you show where your winning power lies and how best you can defeat your opponents. And contrary to popular beliefs, it’s so easy for young people to win an election in Nigeria. What you need is the right how to win strategy. And that strategy is in the voting power. This power is in the numbers, which INEC has appropriately documented.

Although, there is one group of voters I’m excluding from the list. But their action or inaction is in itself a decision. And that makes them culpable on the outcome of elections in the country. I’m talking about the no-show voters. However, I have reserved a particular segment for them in the rigging subhead because they constitute over 56% of voting casualties, going by the 2015 election results. That they never show up to vote is a decision to let the right or wrong candidate win.

Here is how voters affect elections in Nigeria:

Party Voters:

The strength of a political party determines the number of votes it already secured before the Election Day. You should choose your party well. Don’t just rush to get a ticket from any political party. That would just be the ticket to fail. Instead, assess the political party’s membership strength in your area before vying under their platform. A party that has no votes to offer you is not a political party even though it’s registered as such.

Independent Voters:

These kinds of voters are tough to get. They are not party voters. They are somewhat independent in their voting decision. They choose who to vote for across party lines. And a good number of the voters fall into this category. These independent voters they hardly make any difference in an election. And the politicians don’t care about them.

Illiterate Voters:

Here is where all the campaigns by political parties are wasted. These ones are uneducated about matters of politics. They vote as they are commanded by whoever influences them. Most of them are found in rural communities and a few in the urban centres as well. But they represent a large number of voters, and they are easily persuaded.

Block Votes:

This group is the underground economy of politics. They have their votes for sale. If you are looking to buy votes, there are block votes everywhere in Nigerian politics. The politicians will deny that it’s not true, but we know that it exists. It exists everywhere in the world, including the United States of America. They are mostly lead by political figures. And most of their followers are from the illiterate voters and party voters. When you here specific numbers of party members have decamped to another political party, they are the once. They sell their block votes to the highest bidder. They are not really party faithful. They are political business venture managers.

Types of Election Winning Strategies

Election winning strategies are inexhaustible. Different political parties, candidates and even God-fathers have their unique ways of how to win elections. But in these strategies, individual touches play a more sinister role in how they produce results. If you think most politicians play fair, you will be kidding yourself. But you can easily outsmart them because they dwell so much on their connections than facing reality sometimes.

We have selected a few of the strategies being adopted in elections in Nigeria. Some new ideas are also being introduced while old ones are being modified to produce better results. But some of them are not approved by law and cannot be used by sane politicians. But that they are being used at all is the reason I In lauded them in this document.

I will also recommend that you take them on an informational basis. It’s not based on any idea of sensible electoral strategies. The law does not support them, and I cannot recommend them either. But so you know some of the things politicians are doing to destroy the Nigerian brand and ways you can work against these bad electoral campaigns to win an election.

Also, some of the winning strategies are part of the challenges facing free and fair conduct of elections in Nigeria. They may be strategies for some, but as long as they are not approved in the laws regulating electioneering in the country, they are part of the problems.

  1. The Rigging Strategies

Many Nigerians are now very familiar with rigging. It’s a common belief that every election has been rigged in the country since independence. The fact every political party tried to rig has institutionalised rigging in Nigerian politics.

There are many ways politicians carry out their rigging machine. And each year, as INEC change the voting style, the politicians introduce new rigging methods.

However, rigging has many facets to it. There are many ways politicians rig elections. I may not even be able to cover all of it here, but you know them. You can also contribute to the catalogue of Nigerian politicians rigging machine by commenting on this document where ever it’s published on major news media or personal blogs. As I will be making it available for free with rights for any media house to republish without infringement.

So, let’s start with the ones I know and later as you update me I will add yours to this documents as well.

  1. Thugs and Harassment:

Since the days of the NCNC (National Congress of Nigeria and Cameroon), thugs have been a part of Nigerian politics. But it’s not all about a physical exhibition of strength. It can be ethnic harassment driven by the tribal news media formed by the political figures at that time. Even the political parties were established along racial divide.

Later thugs assumed many roles like ballot box snatching, physical intimidation of voters, character assassination, bloodletting, murders, party primarily manipulations, result sheet manipulations, ballot box stuffing, manipulation of voters register and voters card, and now to internet bullying.

These thugs are now used by politicians to even manipulate INEC computer results. As it stands now, Nigeria may never achieve free and fair elections, as INEC is not safe from IT thugs under its employees who are working for politicians to rig the polls.

The most significant voter’s intimidation comes from the imagination of what thugs can do. The no-show voters hide under the concern that they don’t want their pure soul ruffled by thugs working for the politicians. But how long can Nigerians wait to fight back? Now these thugs, after helping the employers win elections are now contesting and winning elections for themselves. Nigerian is under the leadership of thugs. You may call them cabals, but their real identity is thugs.

  1. The Party Agents

There are two types of party agents. Those who believe in the cause of their candidates and those who are working for the money promised them at the end. You can still remember the high-profile case of Orubebe during the 2015 presidential election collation. He is a typical example of a party agent who believes in the cause of his candidate.

But many agents are there for the money. And these agents constitute a big problem for the safe-conduct of the elections. Many of them collect money from other party agents to support in the manipulation of the results to favour a particular candidate, even against the interest of the candidate they are representing.

That is a problem as well for the political parties. They should learn to groom trusted party agents for every election. The idea of leaving party agents recruitment for the candidates contesting is a wrong strategy. The party should control all aspect of the campaign as it affects their party victory at the polls.

Only trusted party agents should be allowed to represent the party at the polling units. There are just 119,973 polling units. Any dedicated party should be capable of raising these party agents, at least two per polling units to represent the party.

But most of the problems of party agents are also caused by the political parties themselves. They hire thugs to work for them, as party agent. These thugs are only interested in the money. They don’t even trust the politicians, who themselves are also part of the thug structure.

  1. Ballot Box Snatching

One of the most notorious rigging methods introduced by politicians is ballot box snatching. This method became prominent at the return of electioneering after many years of military rule. It seemed strange at first but became widespread when it was helping politicians to deny their opponents the advantage in some polling units.

However, the new INEC rule of cancel votes as against votes count was applied, the number of ballot box snatching seems to cut. But it was reintroduced again in a different tactic in Osun state where it was used to stop a political party from winning outright at the first poll count. And that eventually cost the party the victory, as the by-election gave their opponent the lead and victory.

The dangers of snatching ballot boxes can be deaths. Many voters have been injured or even killed during ballot box snatching. These thugs come in with violence to disperse the voters, create confusion at the polling units to give way for their actions. And in some cases, they have worked in connivance with security forces.

  1. Ballot Box Stuffing

Another result of ballot box snatching is box stuffing. The real intention was to snatch it and stuff it with already thumb printed votes. And this strategy works for a while until it was difficult to return a snatched ballot box than it was easier to steal it. And also, because INEC staff in the polling units can be easily bought over.

The strategy changed to using INEC staff to add the already thumb printed votes. So, each political party pays INEC staff of their choice to carry out their bidding. It became a case of how many thumb-printed voters you can pay for.

The party that pays for more thumb printed cards wins an election. The internet is awash with videos of these thugs thumb printing votes for their candidates. And they are also ably aided by security officials. However, electronic voting can end this menace in our election.

  1. Result Sheet Manipulation

And the result sheets are not excluded from politicians rigging machine. Those who wield more power went on to rig from the top level of INEC. Their accomplice is INEC returning officers.

The returning officers can write any figure they want on their result sheet for the candidate that paid for their services. And whatever figure they report at the collation centre is what counts for the last results.

There was no way the electoral officer would have known if something was amiss. Even the party agents at the polling units contribute to this rigging machine to manipulate result sheets. Because by law the party agents are to sign their signatures on the result sheets before returning officers submit at the collation centre.

  1. Voters Intimidation

While many argue that there is nothing like voters intimidation, the reality suggests otherwise. One of the ways politicians have rigged elections in Nigeria is by intimidating the voting public. They are one of the reasons many voters don’t show up at the polls during elections.

And let me explain the real plan of voter’s intimidation. If you look at the Nigerian setting, those who vote at the elections are the poor, the market women, the artisans, unemployed youths, undergraduate students, the underpaid civil servants, and the politicians with their party members. Every other Nigerian doesn’t come out to vote.

This trend has gone on for years now. And if you do a study on these groups of voters with the present campaign trends, they are the groups that can be bought easily. They are those who sell out to stomach infrastructure.

So, the politicians don’t want the privileged Nigerians to vote because they have a mind of their own. They can make wise choices. Instead, they intimidate them into staying at home or leaving the country in droves. If you do an analysis of the exodus of Nigerians to foreign countries, they are more in the privileged class. The doctors, lawyers, engineers, professors, journalists, economists, etcetera. The poor cannot afford visa to anywhere excerpt to their village.

  1. No-show Voters

If you know what this group of voters does to Nigeria, you will be ashamed to fall within the category. They rig the election more than the politicians have done since 1960. But this group claims ignorance of the political problems in Nigeria.

In fact, many of them are more educated than those we elect into offices. But while the poor, market women, the artisans, unemployed, undergraduates, underpaid civil servants, go to the polls to choose leaders, these class of intelligent Nigerians hid in their exquisite mansions and apartments to watch on TV.

They made themselves observers of the madness of the people. But what they didn’t know is that, as long as leaders are elected by the ‘underprivileged’ in our society, Nigeria can never get the best leadership that it deserves.

However, why this act is disastrous is because it’s over 56% of the voting power of Nigeria. Imagine how much impact this figure can make on an election. It can make the difference between those in current positions and those who could have been in those positions. But where 56% of the people did nothing, the choice of 44% may not produce the best of us.

  1. INEC Officials Involvement

If you think because INEC is the electoral umpire they don’t contribute to the problems as well, you will be deceiving yourself. One of the significant issues of rigging in Nigeria is INEC. There are too many imperfections in INEC operations that create room for manipulations.

Also, the ad-hoc staffs are another source of a problem for INEC. Since members of INEC staff are also Nigerians, one should expect issues of manipulations arising. Some of the staff is also nominated by politicians into INEC team. And when those who gave them job want small favours, they cannot oblige them.

You might think by introducing electronic rigging it will be over? I felt so too. But we already have signs of manipulation and accusations of manipulations in the last elections in Ekiti and Osun states. And these accusations are centred on top INEC officials manipulating the electoral results from the backend. That implies that those who have admin access to INEC collation servers can inflate figures or help their benefactor in any way that may improve their victory against the voter’s choice.

A new report has also surfaced recently that the electronic voting machine can also be manipulated to vote multiple times if someone is given a unique code by INEC. And knowing the Nigeria we live in, such things won’t be difficult to achieve. The only way Nigerian elections can be wholly free and fair is if we deploy artificial intelligence and cut human interference with sensitive aspects of our electoral processes.

  1. Voters Register Manipulation

One other way INEC aid in election manipulation is through the voter’s register. And there are many sides to it. The structure and financing model of INEC has problems in it. If you noticed the structure of INEC, it has both federal and state electoral offices. And they both get their support from the different sources.

One of the most significant revelations of election rigging in Nigeria came from a former governor, Donald Duke of Cross River state. In his account, he narrated how state electoral officers are compromised. And it’s not only the elective officers, but the ad-hoc staff are also compromised at different levels.

There is the case of underage voters registered in some states in the North. This kind of issues is not mere rumours. Other forms of voter’s register manipulations include multiple registrations. Although there are claims by INEC that it can filter it out, no one is sure it’s hundred per cent certain.

And with the aid of manual accreditation during polls, these forms of manipulations go unchecked.

  1. Voters Card Manipulation

There was a case in Lagos before 2015 general elections where voters complained that card collection was being released based on ethnicity. Some might argue the authenticity of these claims, but I tell you, anything in politics should not be overlooked. The allegations were actually valid ones.

The voters from the south-east and south-south were being screened out in some collection centres and were told that their cards were not yet out. That single actions helped in denying the PDP candidate in Lagos the victory at the polls. The result was a keenly contested election that saw the PDP for the first time almost winning the governorship seat of Lagos.

However, this kind of manipulation is time bound. It worked then because many voters registered fresh for the elections. But another aspect of the manipulation is disabling Voters cards during the time of the polls to give an advantage to a particular candidate. That is only possible for parties that control the state apparatus at the time of the election.

  1. Godfathers Effects

Now we have come to the godfather’s involvement. Although their impact is fading as new kids on the block are throwing off the weight of their god-fathers to breathe some fresh air. It’s always like customary to have godsons rebelling against their god-fathers after they have been helped to win the election. But that doesn’t end the impact of godfather in every election in Nigeria completely.

The new form of God-fathering is the power of the incumbent. Currently, the governors are the ones trying to lord it on their states. Every outgoing governor seeks to install a successor of his choice, irrespective of the party’s decision. They manipulate the party primaries in favour of their anointed candidate.

It’s now a rational outcome to see in-fighting’s in the parties during primaries due to the governors overbearing influence on the choice of candidates to fill almost every position from the state. Not to mention that it has become their birthright as well to cling on the senatorial seat as a form of retirement benefit.

This new form of God-fathering from governors has become the original form of God-fathers. It’s only in Lagos that Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu has Successful held on to this title. And by all estimation seems to be well deserved. He has managed to dominate agreeably with the support of party structure in the state, that he is able to still keep that exalted position for this long.

Whether or not God-fathers are needed or helpful is still a question of what can we do without rigging. It’s because of the errors of INEC structure that governors have controlled the rigging machines and is sort after by aspiring candidates to help them win.

  1. Anointed Candidates

Whether or not their head was anointed with oil, we do not know. But the case of political god-father Chris Uba and Chris Ngige leaves a sour taste in our mouth. The news of the oath sweated at a famous shrine in Okija, Anambra state came to many as a huge shock. But that has been the prevailing situation of anointed candidates.

The party members know it if you are not the anointed candidate you may not win the election. So, instead of planning a successful campaign, most candidates go after the anointing from god-fathers to secure their mandate. And this kind of endorsements still plays prominent roles in electoral victories in Nigeria.

You can recall the recent primaries of the political parties for the forthcoming 2019 general elections. The one that so interesting is that of Lagos state, where a sitting governor was voted out during the party primaries and an anointed candidate was declared a winner in massively voted direct primaries.

It’s a clear case of the members in full support of the party decision. But you and I know that the party decision is fuelled by a selected few. And these powers that be decided that a current governor should not be returned. It can only happen in Lagos. That is not a classic denial that other states are immune to such occurrence.

13.  Political Endorsements

One of the significant ways elections have been rigged is through political endorsements. This one has become a disease that may eat up everything else. You may not know how dangerous this effect goes, but it’s really a colossal rigging method. It cuts across all strata of our body politics. It’s a self-inflicted injury that will never heal. And as long as Nigerians continue in this path of endorsements, we can never elect the choice of the people into political offices.

It’s usually those who are in the position of influence that’s guilty of this one. It’s only the influencers that can endorse candidates and it will have an effect. And we should discourage it from our society. Here is what happens when we endorse political candidates. The weak, those who cannot think for themselves and all those who believe in the personality of those endorsing the candidate are hooked into voting the candidate supported by their influencers.

This is the highest form of rigging, as it sways the decision of thousands, if not millions of voters in the direction of the endorsement. Almost every leader in the country is guilty of it. The royal fathers, religious leaders, celebrities, every influencer is guilty. And sometimes the influencers are paid to endorse, but the unsuspecting voters may not be aware. We should desist from this and allow the candidate to put up an issue-based campaign and woo the voters on their capacity to build a better country.

14.  Diaspora Effects

One of the unexpected aspects of our political anomaly is the Diaspora effects. This group of Nigerians living abroad have suddenly become a deciding factor in electoral matters back home. The Diaspora Nigerians campaign more than the ‘bereaved’ citizens residing in the country. But in most cases, their campaign is for filthy lucre.

Remember, these are Nigerians who probably escaped the country in search of greener pastures. But now they want to share in the loot of the country they left behind. They jostle for positions in government from the Diaspora. They even influence government policies and decisions through their well-orchestrated kind of cabalism.

Some of them are also helping the governments in power to invest their loots abroad. They know all the investments, which are usually properties owned by government officials in the respective countries abroad. And now these guys are pushing their luck into the dirty waters of Nigerian politics, as they vie to elective offices, using their dollar power to gain influence among the unintelligent voters.

15.  Vote Buying

Vote buying is one of the worst cases of rigging ever implemented in the country. It’s not the buying itself but the rascality in which the buying is conducted. The brazen display of power was grossly used during the last Edo state governorship election that saw Governor Obaseki elected under the platform of the APC.

That election saw bullion van used to carry money to polling units and five thousand naira was shared to voters to induce them into voting their candidate. And it worked. We saw the people hungrily collecting the money and casting their votes as they were led. Some even sold their bite for as paltry as one hundred naira.

The same incident has now become a strategy of rigging the election right at the polling unit. Another case reported was the last Osun state election that saw party officials doling out as high as one hundred thousand naira to buy votes in the keenly contested gubernatorial election in the state.

And if you think we have seen the last of that, then you will be fast asleep in dreamland. One thing you must not take away from politicians is that they love to win. And if they know anything that would help them win they don’t hesitate to buy into it. As long as it keeps working, they will keep buying votes.

16.  Stomach Infrastructure

Stomach infrastructure is another form of rigging that became popular during the election. That brought Ayodele Fayose to power as the governor of Ekiti state. It was the APC the nicknamed it stomach infrastructure. But that strategy is never known. I knew in the days of NPP and NPN, stomach infrastructure was the best strategy used them.

They shared branded rice and other foodstuffs as part of campaign deliveries. Although this kind of inducement is not actually a crime, it helps to subvert the wishes of the people by influencing their conscience to vote for favours rather than for interest.

17.  Security Personnel Involvement

This one is troubling and distasteful. The role of security personnel during an election is to provide the needed cover for voters to cast their votes without disruptions. But we have seen security personnel constituting a nuisance and helping electoral thugs in manipulating the process. We see politicians moving around during elections with security personnel when movement should be restricted.

Also, most of ballot box snatching has been in connivance with security details of politicians or paid guns during elections. Usually, the government in power have absolute control and usage of security personnel in the favour against the opposition. We have seen it used during PDP era and now also in APC time.

B.    Electoral Campaign Winning Ways

I have exhaustively looked at the whole rigging machine politicians are using to manipulate the electoral process. Let me also explore the enormous advantage that is possible for any serious politicians who wants to win square and fair.

Since we know the many tricks of politicians, the good guys still stand a better chance to win elections if only they know what to do. Like I have mentioned in this report, we have a deficit of over 56% of voters who didn’t vote in the 2015 elections. And at that time the number of registered voters was just 67,422,005.

Now, compare it with the current number of registered voters, which is at 84,271,832 voters. That’s an increase of 16,849,827 voters after the 2015 elections. So, we expect more votes in the coming elections. However, the reports of uncollected voter’s card can reduce the effect of this number.

According to an INEC report, over 10 million uncollected voter’s card is still in INEC custody. That’s over 11% of registered voters. It’s also part of the reason for no-show voters. When voters don’t collect their permanent voter’s card, they are not eligible to vote during an election.

But let’s look at the strategies being adopted by politicians to win elections in a legalised way.

1.      Personal Brand Advantage

Your campaign starts with you. What’s your own brand advantage? In politics, the candidate is the main product. Your campaign manifesto is just like a contract document. If the brand is not good enough, the contract will also be frosted with lies.

A good personal brand is your best goodwill promise to the electorate. And before you even consider contesting for an election, you should first evaluate your personal brand. You shouldn’t mistake this with celebrity brand. They are not the same. The kind of personal brand that works is that of trust, dependability, accountability and deliverability.

Don’t mind the hard words. But if truth be told, you need to prove you can be trusted. It’s even the electorate that needs to believe in your trust-ability, yet the party’s leadership; godfathers require such traits as well. The same goes for dependability.

But when it comes for the other two, accountability and deliverability, you will only be dealing with the electorate. That has actually been the case so far. The voters mistake candidates who display more wealth as evidence to deliver on the promise. And that is where the voting public makes serious electoral blunders in voting the fraudsters that had pervaded our body polity.

The best personal brand is your past and present accomplishments in and outside of government. A brand should have the capability to change the situation of the state and bring out improvements that would better the lives of the people. Anyone that can provide a better society for the people is a classy political brand. But even an excellent brand got easily polluted in our politics in no time.

2.      Size of Political Party Membership

Sometimes the reason good personal brands fails in politics is the political party are contesting on their platform. It doesn’t matter what good name or ideal that a party claims to represent. If it doesn’t have a sizable membership, it cannot and will not win elections in Nigeria.

Take the case of Lagos for example. The reason why APC has been stable here is derived from its membership strength. In the last primaries conducted by the party, it had over 900,000 members who voted to select their party governorship candidate in direct primaries.

And the party is boasting to secure over 2 million votes to win in the election. Although Lagos has about 6 million registered voters but going by several factors that are an easy winning target. If the party gets 2 million votes, it can win. But that’s because it has an active membership base it can draw its strength from and mobilise to achieve it.

If you want to contest the election, first consider the party membership strength in the constituency of your interest. If they cannot win a ward election in a free and fair election, how can they succeed in an unfairly contested election? A party is nothing without sizable membership strength. It doesn’t place it as an ambitious party and as such cannot help your ambition.

3.      Financial Inclusion

Money plays a significant role in winning elections, not just in Nigeria but all over the world. As I have also mentioned severally, relating politicking to business, money is also one factor they both have in common. And without money, you cannot win an election. It doesn’t matter what anybody does or says against money politics.

It’s like those criticise the church about money. How else do you expect the church to preach the gospel on radio, television, satellite to reach the whole world as Jesus commanded it to? People will always criticise what they don’t understand.

You need money to make anything work. And politics needs a lot of it too. In the last midterm elections in the United States, one of the keenly contested senatorial positions saw the democratic senator raised over $50 million. That’s approximately N18 billion. And I don’t even know of any senator who can spend that amount in Nigeria.

The only question here is the source of the funds. And that still takes us back to another question. How many Nigerians will donate money to their chosen candidate for an election campaign? You already know the answer. If Nigerians cant fund their candidates how do they expect them to win for them? And it’s not like there is a fixed amount sufficient to finance an election. It all depends on the strategy adopted to execute the campaign.

4.      Grassroots Campaign and Mobilisation

The most effective campaign strategy is the grassroots campaign and mobilisation. Every other approach works towards this primary goal, to mobilise the grassroots. The idea that every candidate came from the grassroots makes this strategy the most effective. Although some politicians didn’t start from the grassroots, everyone came from the grassroots, as every city boy has a village.

However, much of politics happens at the grassroots, even as I have mentioned earlier that the privileged Nigerians don’t vote. It’s equally an exercise in futility to concentrate all your winning efforts on the privileged-ones while the majority votes come from the grassroots.

You need to invest in the best way to campaign and mobilise the grassroots to your advantage. When you hear about the use of stomach infrastructure that gives an idea some of the things politicians do to win the grassroots support. Although, stomach infrastructure is not entirely wrong, because it exploits on the weak among us. That’s what makes it ethically wrong.

And even though the grassroots are smaller units of the larger group, it’s usually where you are well known, either for good or evil from your past. However, some of the grassroots campaign strategies are:

a.      Mega Rally Strategy

The rally approach has been in use since the sixties. It’s one of the best forms of grassroots mobilisation. Politicians hold rallies in every community and ward to gainer their support and win their votes during the polls. But this strategy is also frost with challenges.

That is where most cold-hearted politicians stand in front of the poor voters and lie to them about what they will do when they get into government. Sometimes, the lies are with good intentions and sincerity of purpose. But things changes when they get into power. It’s either they lacked the full knowledge of how government functions or they lack the political will or conscience to fulfil their campaign promises.

But nonetheless, it’s a strategy that has worked over the years and still much useful in our current political structure.

b.      Use of Campaign Posters and Fliers

This strategy seems to be dying, may be due to the overbearing influence of rigging, god-fathers, mobile phones the internet and anointed candidates. Most of the time, these anointed candidates don’t have what it takes to execute election campaigns. They rely on the orders and influence of their god-fathers to win.

But fliers are still useful in the election campaign. If you are targeting smart voters, the use of leaflets will help a lot. The intelligent voters what’s to know your plans if elected into office. It’s particularly useful if you are running at the counsellor, local government chairperson and state assembly levels.

The poster, on the other hand, works for any category of the candidate. The mistake some politicians make is to downgrade some strategy. In the business world, every plan is evaluated based on its return on investment. The same principle applies to any form of campaign. If you can justify the investment you put into it, then you should consider the strategy. The whole essence of a campaign is to win more votes.

c.       Town Crier Strategy

The idea of a town crier is not new in politics. It’s an old concept of town hall meeting that is now modified, using the business concept of product insertion into local markets. So, it has the old town hall effects but now improved for better results. The idea is to create strong word of mouth publicity in every ward using selected members of the same ward that are respected and recognised.

Let me explain briefly how the concept of product insertion works. The idea of product insertion is to increase the market share of the brand in each of the targeted markets. And the process takes the shape of building strong distributors and retailer’s network. One or two distributors are selected from each market as the primary supply source to the demand for that particular brand. The retailers are now linked to the distributors for their supply.

The town crier strategy works in that direction as well, but with a little tweak. You recruit a chief town crier for each ward. And the ward crier is assigned to enlist others in all the villages. Each village crier has the responsibility of mobilising all the voters in the village, create voters register for all those in the village with voters card and is responsible for ensuring each of them votes for the candidates of the party.

This kind of strategy works best if implemented by the party and not individual candidates. The list created is collated centrally, according to the wards, constituencies, local governments, senatorial districts and states. This way the party has an active database for a grassroots campaign. There are also other functions of the town crier, which include making regular early morning announcements with a gramophone. These announcements should consist of updates on party decisions, programs and upcoming meetings.

Fastweb Internet Services has a well-developed concept that can enhance party campaign using the town crier strategy. You can request this proposal through email or the contact page.

5.     Media Campaign and Mobilization

The media still remains the most excellent strategy for election campaigns. But the way Media Campaign is applied now has changed, with new media platforms controlling more traffic now than the conventional media platforms. Your drive should seek ways to implement the entire possible media platform that would help your campaign.

You need to learn how to apply the different media platforms to work for your campaign advantage. Each platform has a defined target audience. How you use the platforms will be determined by the target audience.

It’s also vital that you utilise all of them, as it adds specific advantage to your campaign.

a.     Conventional Media Campaign

The traditional media platform has been used by politicians for decades now. The television, radio and newspapers are not new in a political campaign. However, you need to understand how things have changed about them to find better ways of using them.

Mostly what politicians do with conventional media is to place adverts or paid reviews. But when it comes to news for which these media platforms are designed for, they let the media decide what story is worthy. That should change. To effectively use the conventional news media to achieve an effective election campaign, you have to exploit their most potent arsenal, their news strength.

Most people use them for their news quality and coverage and not for their adverts or even reviews. If you can get into the flow of the regular daily news, you will be seen by more people than your advertorial campaign can reach.

And don’t ignore the fact that you are already a news material as a contestant in an election. Your campaign team should come up with newsworthy events around your campaign to drive the news media into publishing your content regularly without any form of inducement. And it has to be good enough to make the front page in newspapers and top stories on television and radio news hours.

b.     Search Media Campaign

The search media is not being utilised by politicians at all. Although many of them have an online presence like websites, social media and even wiki profiles. But all these profiles are not optimised for top ranking Google searches.

A smart politician should seek to dominate the information space about anything. If you allow the news media and your opponents to dominate the search media with all the negative information about you, it will kill your personal brand.

Over 3 billion searches are conducted on Google daily. And some of these 3 billion searches include people searching information that relates to you. As a public figure, you should seek to control what people see and read about you anywhere on the web. And the way to do that is simple.

You know that one of the significant disadvantages of the internet is that it doesn’t forget. Anything posted online stays there for as long as those websites exist. That means you may not have control of what anybody chooses to post about you online. But you can control what people should see about you by using search engine optimisation techniques to push the right information about you to the top page of Google search.

That way you push all the other junks about you down the pages, and because nobody goes down there often, they may never see them at all.

1.     How to Implement Search Media Campaign

Search media is one of the rarest used strategies in the election campaign. So, it will be right for me to try and explain more deeply. The whole idea behind search media is to create relevant information about your personal brand for public consumption. It’s a digital copy of your life on the internet.

It involves everything you do that can be found and accessed online. Having the power to control such information will be good for your image. In the digital space, it’s called online reputation management. And because most of what people will find online will be through the search engine like Google, it’s essential to optimise everything about you that you want the online community to see about you.

And you can also get some information about you buried deep in the internet of things. That way nobody will find them, as many people don’t actually dig that deep for information. And it can also be deleted from the web entirely. This kind of service is a paid service handled by professionals.

a.      Website and Blogs

In today’s world, a site is one tool a politician must have for the campaign. Don’t say, who is interested in my website? Some things are better done to create an impression. Moreover, you can use your site to drive donations to your campaign or recruit volunteers.

But in line with search engine optimisation, a website or blog is required to help create contents that are useful for Google and can replace junks about you online. Nowadays, sites come with prebuilt blogs. That way you have two in one package that helps you project your personal brand, telling your own stories the way you want it to be read by the public.

b.      Wikipedia Record File

You can also use Wikipedia instead of blogs. In fact, the option of the wiki cannot be ignored even if you have a website. Every politician needs a wiki page. And it’s also a fast way of pushing information about you on top of search pages. Although some politicians already have wiki pages, they are not fully optimised. You need to create enough information there with regular updates when necessary.

The cost of search engine optimisation can be as high as $5,000 monthly, including online reputation management. And it should be done for an extended period of time to gain proper traction on the web. Don’t just pay a reputation manager for one month and ignore it. At least a minimum of six months work is required for an excellent online reputation building.

If you can’t afford that amount, go for a cheaper deal if can find. But know that cost has something to do with the quality of job delivery as well. This will help build your personal brand beyond any campaign you can do. It’s not a rush thing. You will need to start years ahead of election year. It’s slow to grow but beneficial when done well.

c.       Social Media Campaign

The use of social media in politics is immense in Nigeria. What is actually not right in the form of usage. For most politicians, it’s used to preach about their candidacy. That’s not really going to be impactful. Remember, it’s called social media. It’s not the same as the news media. Don’t use it the same way.

If there is anything you should be doing on social media, it’s to demystify yourself. People what to know the real you and not the one the news media has been embellishing. The people would want to see how you live daily. What you are doing and who you are with each day or as much private life as you can post to online.

It’s called social media for a reason. It’s meant to be sociable. And you are going to elicit much appreciation. Don’t try to politicise your social media account. Instead, use it to respond to personal criticism and attacks from political opponents.

If you have observed how president Trump has used Twitter, he gained more followers because even the media get news from the president more on Twitter than regular media. That way people know where to get any important news coming from you, and they won’t believe the lies of the press unless they can read it from your social media page.

1.      Social Media Online Group

The online groups are also helpful for an election campaign. You can create public groups for your supporters. It will help to feed loyal followers with information and share digital materials to enable them broadcast to their online contacts.

Effective use of this group can help increase candidates electoral value. Think of Facebook groups as a critical factor in spreading news faster about your campaign. Every candidate has loyal fans, whether those who are genuinely committed to the aspiration or just for monetary gain. Using these groups will help mobilise them with the right content, images and videos to share with their own contacts.

The power of this group is seen in the extended power of each member of the group. Every Facebook user is connected online to their family members, village people, friends and colleagues. This kind of connection is the most reliable link every politician needs to reach with their electoral messages. Having a healthy and vibrant online group will give you quick access to these people through their connected family members.

The power of the group can be explained in numbers. Assuming there are one thousand group members. And each of the members of the group has an average of one thousand people connected through their Facebook account, which gives you access to one million people that you can reach through the one thousand members of your group. But the massive benefit of the group is that these one million reach is a targeted group of people who one way or another is beneficial to your cause.

You need a better way to implement groups, recruit helpful supporters and manage the works of your campaign. You can have Fastweb Internet Services help you set up and achieve your online groups.

2.      WhatsApp Campaign Group

The use of WhatsApp group for politician campaign is another tool that works. But the user should be with caution. Understanding the different platforms and how it benefits your campaign is equally critical to your campaign success. WhatsApp is not a mass media platform. It’s a peer to peer communication medium.

Trying to add everybody into a WhatsApp group without knowing if it’s a cause they believe in can work against your campaign. The WhatsApp group should be for your campaign team and anyone who needs to be updated instantly whenever there is information about your campaign. You don’t want to be sharing relevant information with strangers or those who don’t want to be a part of it.

Also, if people are not happy that they were added to the group, it will breed animosity, and as they leave the group, they also prompt others to exit the group as well. That in itself is a defeatist agenda.

The best way to use WhatsApp is to create small groups of your core followers from different zones. It may be from each ward, depending on your political aspiration. And only a known follower is added to the groups. And each group will have a leader. All the leaders of each WhatsApp group will now be combined in a group which will be headed by your campaign team. As information is shared here, they are required to share in their respective groups.

And if you adopted the town crier method, then each ward and village crier can create their own groups and add all the people they have recruited in the respective wards and villages. Never make a mistake of creating a group and adding people who didn’t subscribe to your campaign.

d.      Email Campaign Strategy

An email campaign is not new, but it’s rarely used by politicians. It may be the advantage it’s not known or understood. There are Nigerians you can only reach through email. And when we talk about different campaign strategies, it’s not to multiply the different ways to campaign but to show you what can bring in more additional votes if you aren’t using it yet.

There is millions of Nigerian email address to email with your campaign messages. This represents Nigerians from all works of life. The students, civil servants, traders, business owners, etcetera. The email gives you an opportunity to sell your manifesto to the public and mobilise voters to your aspiration to lead them.

While email may be useful, it should be used when contesting for certain political offices, like national offices, the governorship and presidential campaigns.

Email campaign gives you access to a large number of voters without political parties or affiliation. It’s usually where you meet the no-show voters. It gives you access to voters that your competitors may not be reaching. It also provides room for feedback, which is vital to shaping your campaign vision.

e.      Mobile Campaign Strategy

Mobile is now the fastest and most extensive reaching political campaign strategy. The beauty of mobile is that it gets to each voter directly and personally. And you can reach millions of voters within 3 minutes. That’s the fastest you can plan any campaign and execute it.

Think about it, if you want to reach all the 84 million registered voters, you can do that in just 3 minutes. That’s the fastest medium and also the broadest reach of any campaign strategy. But it has not been well utilised over the years.

One of the methods of using mobile campaign is through sending bulk text messages (SMS). These messages can be sent to millions of predefined mobile numbers at the same time. Already, some politicians have been using this platform for years now.

The other mobile campaign method is voice call messaging or robocall. This strategy works like dialling a phone and talking to the voters directly in your own voice. It has such tremendous impact when used.

1.      How to Implement SMS Campaign

SMS campaign is the easiest and fastest to implement. All you need is an SMS platform and phone contacts of the target voters you want to reach. Once you broadcast the message, it’s delivered instantly. It takes as little as 3 minutes to get SMS campaign messages addressed to the target recipients.

However, this form of a campaign has little challenges. SMS prices are controlled by the delivery speed. It’s essential as well because sent SMS will expire after 48 hours if not successfully delivered. If you send high volume SMS, you will require a fast delivery platform to achieve a high success rate, and that would cost you more than the cheap SMS rates you might see being advertised. Those cheap offers work best for smaller volumes.

For instance, if you want to send 10 million text messages, if you subscribe to a company that doesn’t have the capacity for high traffic delivery, it might take months to get that ten million delivered.

SMS delivery is measured by the number of messages it can deliver per second. Imagine if a platform can only carry 300 text messages by the second, that’s 18,000 deliveries per minute and 1,080,000 deliveries per hour. The faster the delivery success is achieved, the higher the cost of per SMS campaign message.

That also means if you pay for cheaper SMS campaign it takes a much longer time for the messages to be delivered. The bank alert is a good example. When you perform a transaction, the SMS alert comes instantly. The only thing that can delay the instant delivery may be your GSM network or the service strength of your current location or your mobile device. But from the SMS company, the alert leaves instantly. That’s how fast the right SMS campaign should work as well.

2.      How to Implement Voice Call/Robocall Campaign

The fact that voters can be reached through their mobile phones give any candidate the power to reach out to voters using the voice call technology. The only challenge has been being able to call thousands or millions of voters.

The impact of voice call supersedes all other forms of the campaign. The fact that voters would hear the voice of the candidate is a big shakeup for many voters. You should not disregard the psychological impact it has on the voters when they can listen to from the president or governor or a candidate they admire and ‘worship’.

However, as technology improved, Robocall made it possible for politicians to reach millions of voters through a voice call. It works by recording the voice message of the candidate which is then pushed to mobile phones of the voters through dialled call technology. As each voter answered the call the prerecorded message on the voice of the candidate is played to them.

This strategy can invoke word of mouth publicity for your campaign and win more voters than any other means of the campaign. Apart from reaching millions of voters, it creates a sense of love that their candidate can call them directly on their phones.

Conclusion:

The strategies described in this report are based on what has been used in Nigerian politics. Fastweb Internet Services produced this report to give insight to young and upcoming politicians who may what to know how to win elections in the country. But the ideas can also be implemented by matured politicians.

And if you require the help of Fastweb in any area regarding what is in this report, you can reach out to us through any of the platforms in the introduction. However, the best way to reach us is through our website www.fastweb.com.ng

We have contact forms on almost any page of our site where you can drop us a message, and within 24 hours you will receive a response from us. We appreciate your time in reading through this report. And if you read this report on a blog or newspaper, we also have the eBook version available here for FREE DOWNLOAD.

 

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How to Buy a Perfect Domain Name Everytime

Do you want a domain name for your website? Have you been having difficulties finding that perfect name you need? Do you know what you should be looking for in a domain name? Or why and where you should buy the perfect one?

You can’t even register a name without a domain registrar who takes care of the back-end of the registration process. Imagine If there were no domain name system. You would have to browse the internet by typing long and difficult-to-remember IP addresses to open any website.

Moreover, don’t just register any name that’s available. There is a strategy adopted by successful online entrepreneurs in picking perfect names for their website. You too can learn to use the same approach for your next domain registration. In some ways, it’s also like business name registration.

Description

All websites, no matter the size, big or small, need a domain name. You can’t have a site without a name. You can only buy these names through domain registrars. And if you already own a domain, you can also choose to transfer it from one domain registrar to another.

Whichever way, it’s also not that simple to know which domain registrar is the best for your online goals, your budget, or your needs.

Some domain registrars are more expensive than others. And some don’t offer free features, such as domain privacy protection. That’s why I added a list of the top domain registrars. It will help you make an informed decision about where to register your domain name.

For Nigerian domains, you can choose either the .com.ng or .ng names. For the most part, you can find the right domain name for your website without issues. However, many people are going with the opinion that only .com names are globally acceptable.

Even if that’s true, what if you can’t find the right .com name, what happens? Don’t you know that Google is gearing towards local search? And it will be mostly prioritising local domains like .com.ng and .ng names.

Domain Availability

A major challenge with the domain name is availability. For example, if you want the “best-buy” as a name for your website, you may not find it to register. And because best-buy is registered, you cannot get it for your site.

However, that’s where the domain extension variants come into play. Best-buy may have been registered on .com but not registered on .shop or any other domain extension. So, if you want the best-buy, you can buy it under another domain extension. The Internet now has 1,535 domain extensions (TLDs) as of October 11, 2018.

In Nigeria, most of the hot domain names on .com extension are valuable on .com.ng and .ng domains. You can grab any name that’s right for your website on the .com.ng for as low as N1,250 for a year registration here.

Some people also buy these domain names and resale them for profit. Even if the name extension you want is available, it may be on sale at a premium. the number one premium domain site is Sedo.

Premium Domain Names

A premium domain is not different from another domain name. It’s just the value that makes it a premium name. For example, when I wanted to buy mystore.com, the price was $100,000. It was a premium domain. I ended up buying mystore.com.ng for just N2,500.

You can see a huge difference. But it’s the same name with the only difference being their domain extensions. And that is worth paying a premium for if you must have a .com extension.

However, most premium domain names are popular in the following extensions, .com, .net, .org, and .co. And even in these domain extensions, only one word or two-word domain fall into premium domains. Anything from three-word may be easily registered for $10 or even free on some domain registrar.

Top Domain Registrars

Choosing the right name and domain registrar shouldn’t be taken lightly. However, the differences between domain registrars are defined by their features and price offering. And in some case, the domain extension they register. For Nigeria domain extension registrars I will mention a few where you can register .com.ng and .ng names.

The list includes:

  • Nira – The Nigeria Internet Registration Association(NIRA). It’s the registrar of all Nigeria TLD extensions.
  • 101Domain – is the only global domain registrar brand that registers dot ng names.
  • WhoGoHost – is the preferred Nigerian domain registrar. I use them for MyBlog.com.ng
  • DomainKing – is a favourite Nigeria domain registrar.
  • Intsra – is one of those registrars with unique service provision.
  • Web4Africa – has been in operation far longer than most of them. Their service is also exceptional.
  • Registeram – if I have my way this one got me with their name. And they are good as well.
  • Upperlink – is another favourite Nigeria domain registrar.

Global Domain Extension Registrars:

I have also made a top list of the registrars for you as listed on HostingFacts. You can make an informed decision about which one is best for you. If you noticed any domain registrar missing you can add tell me on the comment section.

  1. GoDaddy is a highly popular domain registrar with 17 million users.
  2. Namecheap was named “Best Domain Name Registrar” in 2010 and “Most Popular Domain Name Registrar” in 2012.
  3. Bluehost is not only a great place to register a domain; it’s also a great place to host your website. Over 2 million sites are hosted with Bluehost.
  4. HostGator has 9 million registered domains. Like Bluehost, they are primarily a web hosting service provider.
  5. Name.com controls over 2 million domains out of the 16.5 million domains owned by their parent company (Right side).
  6. 1&1 has been around for ages in the domain registrar world; they were founded in 1988. With 1&1, .com sites are only $0.99 per year per domain.
  7. Register.com manages 2.5 million domains and offers extensive online marketing tools.
  8. InMotion Hosting provides automatic domain renewal and tons of different web hosting options.
  9. Google Domains is in the beta stage and doesn’t allow Nigerians yet, but it’s still a great domain registrar. They allow you to register your domain for up to ten years, and WHOIS privacy protection is included with every available domain name.

Domain Name Hosting

A domain name is like an address of a property. You still need the land to build the property that will have the address. That means you will need a website and a web host. But my focus here is on the web host.

You can host your domain name on any web host. Unlike domain registrar that may not be registering specific domain extensions, a web host is not restricted at all. So, your .com.ng domain can be hosted on any server around the world.

In choosing a web host, I like to use the one big brands are recommending. Like, Bluehost, it’s supported by Google domains and WordPress. These two big brands cannot recommend any product that’s not good enough. So, I’m also recommending it to you as well. Click here to buy web host from them.

Action Points on Perfect Domain Name

Also, choosing a perfect domain name for your website may need some brainstorming. You need to select a name that relates to what your site does. That will help users remember your business.

How you arrive at your name is vital to the website. Don’t just register any name because it’s available. You need a strategy to follow each time you want a domain name.

A good domain name is short, memorable and not more than three words. Anything longer may affect how visitors interact with your site. And some factors should change how you choose a domain.

Step One: Exact Match Domain (EMD)

Exact match domain or EMD means is that you are buying a name with the exact keyword in it. For example, if your primary website keyword is “best buy,” then your exact domain name should be www.bestbuy.com or bestbuy.com.ng or BestBuy.ng. Or whatever domain extension you prefer or is available.

Step Two: Partial Match Domain (PMD)

A partial match domain or PMD means the name has your primary site keyword but not in an exact match. For example, if your website primary keyword is “best buy,” your partial domain name may be www.originalbestbuy.com or www.mybestbuy.com, etcetera.

Step Three: Brand Name Domain

This one doesn’t try to match your primary website keyword, either exact or partially. The focus here is to get a domain name that represents your brand identity. Your brand is the focus, instead of your primary keyword.

Picking a brand domain name may be easier, shorter and memorable. That’s if your brand is a unique word formed by you. Also, all the famous names are either in use or registered as premium domains for sale.

Conclusion

Domain names are essential to your online presence. The chances that you will need a domain name soon are also high, even if you think now that you don’t have any business online.

The future of the internet is growing faster. And soon we will all need to register our name online to exist. You may laugh about it, but it’s already happening. Famous people and celebrities use their names as their domain name. You may be surprised that someone has already registered your name as a domain.

If personal names are getting scarce, what about business names? According to Internet Web Stats, over 1.9 billion websites are on the internet. There is no website without a domain name. And there are more websites than domain names. A domain can host multiple websites using sub-domains.

Recommendations

You can find a full list of ICAHN-Accredited Registrars here.

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