Olagesin : When Experience And Mental Power Collide

In Nigeria's experiential marketing sector, the name Kayode Olagesin has become synonymous with great results. Thus, it is quite logical to state that any historical report on experiential marketing in Nigeria, without conspicuously showcasing the exploits of Kayode Olagesin, would definitely be declared inconclusive.


Mr Kayode Olagesin CEO Town Criers Nigeria Ltd.

He has been part of the sector almost from the beginning. Although his career in marketing communications started at Insight communications in 1989, where left for SO&U in 1991, his formal entry into the experiential world was when he picked up a job at Cosse in 1995.

From that year till date, (except during his brief interlude with Bate Cose) Olagesin has consistently played many key roles within the experiential marketing space in Nigeria. He has handled top-notch projects from the stable of great brands like British American Tobacco and Nigerian Breweries. Some of The projects he has initiated and or handled include Star Mega Jam, Star Trek, Star Quest etc.


From the 90s till the turn of the century, Olagesin handled huge responsibilities in virtually all mega concerts in Nigeria. It is this depth of experience that has kept Towncriers, the company he handles now, at the top echelon of experiential agencies in Nigeria.

Even when the sector concluded plans to reorganise itself about six years ago, under the body called Experiential Marketing Association of Nigeria (EXMAN), the cap for the position of Pioneer Chairman was fit only for the humble but inextinguishable Kayode Olagesin. Here, Olagesin shares excerpts from his many years on experience with our Content Editor



EXMAN's achievement in the last six years


The beautiful thing is that we started off addressing a very fundamental issue from the beginning, and it was not a decision that was arrived at by the executive fiat. We basically had two positions in term of direction. We went through a very robust academic debate to arrive at a decision involving some of our trustees. We were looking at either making EXMAN a standalone body, the same way you have NIPR or basically aligning with the rest of the industry under the advertising platform. So they were two opposing schools of thought. The argument was that experiential marketing should also be a separate discipline on its own, but really, if you look at it what we do, it is advertising. The field of advertising is either above the line or below the line. Experiential marketing, as you know, falls under below-the-line advertising. We also sought legal representation, to help us interpret the pros and cons of the laws for us before we finally arrived at a consensus to align with APCON.

Efforts towards full registration with APCON


Executive after executive has pursued this objective alongside some of the other things in terms of training for our members. One of the early things we also did was developing a code of conduct for ourselves, for self-regulation and for our engagement with the rest of the advertising sub-sector. We started our engagement when Mr Lolu Akinwumi was the APCON chair and when then he left, we had Udeme Ufot and the engagement continued. Then suddenly the APCON council was dissolved for the past 5 years. It hasn’t been reconstituted as we speak but the good thing is that now we have Dr Lekan Fadolapo as the registrar, so a lot of the things we have been preparing for and engaging on are beginning to see the light of day. A number of our members have secured membership and our agencies are also registered under APCON. So we have come a long away for a very young industry association so if I should say I am very proud of what we have achieved, I have good reasons for saying so.


How we will enforce the payment of N500, 000 rejection fee to each experiential marketing agency that loses out in a pitch.