Over the years, 20 to be exact, leading youth market specialists HDI Youth Marketeers
has spread its horizon to reach out to youth in Angola, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Uganda and Mozambique. HDI is spreading its footprint in Africa, as the continent has proven to be youthful. HDI has recently announced the opening of their new offices in Ghana.
“Youth for us, is not the conventional 14 to mid-30s, for us, youth are aged from birth all the way up to their mid-20s, which makes Africa the perfect playground for brands who want to connect with this market in Africa,” said Catherine Bothma, Managing Director of HDI Youth Marketeers.
According to the Sunday Times Generation Next 2016 survey, our young people have an annual direct spend of over R134bn, in Nigeria, the youth population is seen to spend, on annually, about US$ 14bn - this amount increases every year! “The youth in Nigeria are resilient and they have a positive mind-set. They are early adopters of innovations in their world, they have access to disposable income and have a passion for fashion, music and a compulsive desire for ‘vain’ things like tech gadgets, vehicles and clothing,” describes Joko Okupe, CEO of HDI Youth Marketeers’ Nigeria office.
It’s discovered in the survey that young people give their loyalty to brands that make their lives better or easier, or both. Taking a look at the African landscape, young people also believe in brands that showcases their talent, in music, dance, sport, drama, and those that help them acquire skills that enable them to earn a sizeable income. “Brands need to understand who and what young people are about. Young people like to think ‘local’, despite strong competition with international brands, they want skills and advice about their future,” said David Malonza, MD at the HDI Kenyan office. “If brands want to survive, they should include youth in their strategies,” he added.
The survival of a brands in the marketing landscape is, at most, determined by its understanding of the heterogeneity of the African population, “that’s if you want to make meaningful connections with the youth.” Access, financially and location, is deemed to be significant in the views of youth - if it’s hard to find, and is expensive, they won’t mind looking for another brand that’s accessible and cheaper, and still makes them feel and look good.