Opinion: Businesses that thrive during Electioneering

By Olutayo Irantiola

2019 General elections

The 2019 elections in Nigeria is already staring in the faces of her citizenry and there has been a surge in the release of funds for various activities. It is pertinent to know that the funds in the economy will circulate within some certain people who have beneficial skills that will support the aspirants to be elected into the various offices. Some of the identified businesses that have been studied to thrive every four years are-

Graphic Designers: For every poster that is seen, there is a graphic designer, who created a copy for the poster. Many graphic designers would be smiling to the bank at this time of electioneering.

Printers: The Daily Trust newspaper of April 17, 2011 has a report titled Electioneering pushes printing profits to the peak During this season, printers enjoy a lot of patronage, from posters, to handbills, to banners of all sizes, and printing on various souvenirs and other paraphernalia for the election.

Traders: As mentioned above, the printers would print on various items such as papers, shirts, face caps, banners and other items. Traders who are renowned for stocking these products would be patronized. It should also be noted that specified colours that aligns with that of the political parties will attract more patronage.

Car Dealers: A lot of cars have been bought and donated to the campaign office of these aspirants, for instance, King Wasiu Ayinde Marshal (KWAM 1) donated a vehicle to the Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu Campaign Organization (BOSCO); one Mr Jonathan donated a vehicle to Alhaji Atiku Abubakar’s campaign; Innoson donated two vehicles to Buhari Campaign Group; Governor Rotimi Akeredolu donated 18 vehicles to Buhari/Osinbajo re-election campaign and many more. All of these cars were purchased from various dealers who are now smiling to the banks.

A branded campaign vehicle

Vehicle Branding Specialists: Every purchased vehicle for the electioneering purpose has gone to the vehicle
branding specialists. Interestingly, many of these cars are fully wrapped for the purpose or electioneering. Some of the elements on the cars include party logo; pictures of the candidates from the state to the federal level of contesting for various elective offices

Musicians: “If music be the food of love, play on”, that was said by William Shakespeare but during electioneering, “If music is the food of eulogy, play on”, in fact, “if music be the food of attack, play on’. Musicians are known to be waxing albums in praise of the aspirants; creating campaign sign in tunes; jingles amongst others. Every venue for political rally is usually a jamboree of sorts.

Public Address Systems Owners: In order to guarantee the success of any political rally, there must be a ‘solid’ public address system that would make the aspirants audible. The companies with this expertise would definitely have equipment that will make the aspirant resonate miles away from the venue of the campaign.

Event Centre and Rental Services Companies: There is no campaign rally without a venue, asides the use of open spaces in certain places, there would be a need for a space where people can be engaged, if there is a need to use open spaces- marquee tents and other canopies are also used. Many of these items are not purchased by the political class but they are usually rented. These people, in these categories, are also making some cool bucks this electioneering year.

Marketing Communications Professionals: These are usually the backend players in the electioneering process. Many organizations that get involved in political communications do not yell from the rooftop but they have reasons to smile to the bank. Experiential marketers would take care of the political rallies; advertisers would take charge of the flagpoles and billboards which Public Relations Specialists would be in charge of the messaging before, after and during the campaign. They would also be watchful of any crisis management such as character assassination, intra party conflict and others.

Others to be engaged to manage the process include Social Media Management Professionals that will be charged with the responsibility of creating contents that will attract the younger populace. Photographers and videographers to document the events.

Newsmen: Any political aspirant that is not in the news is just joking. All forms of media- new, traditional, and broadcast- will definitely have a field day during political campaigns. Newspaper proprietors will have a surge in the number of adverts placed; editors and writers would engage aspirants and their efforts would not go unappreciated; the same applies to television and radio stations. There would equally be a corresponding increase in the adverts on social media, blogposts and engagement of social media influencers to enhance the visibility of the aspirant.

Security Personnel: In order to forestall such ugly incidences in which street urchins would turn campaign rally venues to a battlefield, many political aspirants and their supporters have a large number of security assigned to them during electioneering period. The assigned officers would be ‘taken care of’ and this may not apply to those on their regular beat. Little wonder that many security personnel jostle for limited security slots around politicians.

Lawyers: So, at the end of the elections, there is usually an election petition tribunal for those who aim to contest the result of the elections. An aspirant would not be able to slog it out personally in these tribunals, hence the need to engage a lawyer. The services of a Senior Advocate is usually required to champion this and their professional fees is highly professional.

In summation, what skills, education or line of business do you have that will change your fortunes this year? Start a business, get it known to the world and you could make some fortune during electioneering period like it is currently happening in 2019. If you missed out this time around, you can watch out for states would election calendar is already altered or you wait till 2023.

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