Dr Samuelson Appau
University Lecturer and Marketing Expert
Learn more about Dr Samuelson Appau; the Master of Ceremonies for this year’s One Diaspora Gala
Join Skin I'm In and Dr Samuelson Appau at the the 2019 One Diaspora Gala. Tickets can be purchased here.
q: what's so great about marketing?
A: Marketing is the software of business; it brings the other aspects of a business to life. It is what connects your product or service to the person willing to buy. Marketing gives that person a reason to buy, not just once, but again and again. It's more than just advertising; it's about understanding what products or service offers the best solution, who to sell to, how to sell it to the person so they come back again, at what price, and how to get the product or service to the person willing to buy. Marketing is about solving people's problems with businesses offerings. We all do some form of marketing all the time, from job interviews to recommending things to our friends, and from the clothes we wear to our use of social media. What is great about marketing is that everyone needs it, and anyone can do it.
q. aside from being an assistant professor of marketing, what else keeps you busy?
A: Oh boy, sleep. I'm kidding, but seriously, how good is sleep after a hard day's work. As part of work, I do spend time helping new businesses develop their marketing strategy. I also do some work with Blue Nile, which is a training program for African entrepreneurs. I blog every now and then and do some consulting work on the side. Aside from work, I just enjoy spending time with my wife. We just hang out and talk about different things till she falls asleep first. One of my loves is football (I still refuse to call it soccer haha). I play football once or twice a week, watch the European games when I can and play FIFA on my Play Station with friends.
q. as the master of ceremonies for this year's one diaspora gala, what can guests expect from you?
A: Everything! Fireworks, confetti, backflips, rocks, papers, scissors. If it were possible, I would promise them the time of their lives. But the reality is that the gala is going to be about them, about you, about us. It's a night for us to connect and celebrate each other, for all the times we stood tall in the face of adversity, and for all the times we got back on our feet after a setback. My job is to be everyone's “thinking out aloud voice” on the night, but I think people should expect that the night will be about our story, and our inimitable place in this society.
q. what's the best tip you can give to anyone who is about to write an elevator pitch for their business?
A: Believe in your own bullshit. Crude, yes. But I found that the first step to making others believe you is to make yourself believe you. There's more to a good pitch than just this, but I have found that convincing yourself of the good in your own idea is a necessary first step to a good pitch.
q. complete the sentence, "my definition of good marketing is...
A: " ...one that knows and understands its target market. I tell my students all the time. There's nothing like bad marketing; there's just good marketing targeted at the wrong audience.
q. please provide a final marketing tip or strategy for our business community.
A: There's many that I would like to share but if I have to pick one, I will follow on from I what I have just said about good marketing, which is knowing your target market. I think often, many businesses do not really think very deeply about who they want to market to. Everyone can buy from you but who do you really want? Not even Coca Cola markets to everybody even though everyone drinks Coke. You need to pick an audience, learn about their needs and desires, and how you can position your product to suit them. If you know your target market so well, you can become them, you can speak to them like them, go places where they go, sell at prices they will find to be good value and take on social conversations they find important. If you try to speak to everyone, you speak to no one. If you try to excite everyone, you become totally vanilla.