“Nigerians are not well informed on storytelling as a way of selling their brand” – Esohe Igbinoba

Esohe Igbinoba is a Brand Storytelling Strategist and Founder, The Global Brand Network

Esohe Igbinoba is a Brand Storytelling Strategist and Founder, The Global Brand Network, a brand management organisation with a focus on teaching entrepreneurs how to create storytelling brands that are impactful and very profitable.As a Brand Storytelling Strategist, she helps them to use their own stories to market their brands online, through her unique system: Brand Experience Design. She has helped over 100 people use this system to get results in their lives and businesses.Through her work at The Global Brand Network, she has been able to build a community of over 2,000 storytelling brands. Through her website, queenesohe.com, she now teaches all she has learnt on her journey so far to entrepreneurs willing to leverage storytelling to build impactful and profitable businesses. She helps them with her one on one coaching programs, online courses and training programs. Esohe shares her story in this interview.

Childhood Influence
Absolutely! From a tender age of 6, I had become aware of my skills in writing, speaking and acting. I would take lead roles in church and school and totally enjoyed myself! I grew into writing short stories and scripts for dramas. Also, anyone who knows me would tell you I love movies. Okay, that’s putting it lightly. I’m more of a cinema movie addict. I enjoy watching or reading great stories told by renowned storytellers. Asides from my love of stories, I also love people. I enjoy spending time getting to know or be of service to people. I go to the movies often with friends and love attending networking events for female entrepreneurs.

Now, I help entrepreneurs use their stories to market their brands, bond with their audiences and sell their products and services with ease.Yes, I will say my childhood prepared me for what I do today.

The Global Brand Network
The Global Brand Network (GBN) is a brand management organisation with a focus on teaching entrepreneurs how to create storytelling brands that are impactful and very profitable. We help experts and consultants use stories to market their brands and sell their products and services. We’ve worked with over 100 experts who’ve built influential storytelling brands. It’s been 20 months since I launched my brand and it’s been an amazing experience sharing my message of storytelling to help entrepreneurs and businesses build powerful storytelling brands.

Why Storytelling?
Storytelling is a very powerful medium of communication. We all respond well to stories and it’s a technique that veteran marketers have learnt to use well in their communication. I found out a lot of entrepreneurs have great technical skills in their business, however, a lot of them struggle with marketing talk less of storytelling. I decided to educate entrepreneurs on how to leverage storytelling in their marketing and achieve better results for their brands because I know for a fact that storytelling is the game changer.

Challenges
I had many challenges running my business, from being confused about if my business was worth focusing on, to how to get new clients, to dealing with volunteer staff who disappoint to dealing with people’s ‘’feedback’’ on what I was doing.

I’ll share a story with you:
I was running a series on my closed Facebook group, The Global Brand Network, for about a week and my engagement was off the roof!
I was already counting the naira and dollars that will enter my account and lo and behold, after the series, I launched my online course and made an early bid offer.Nobody took it.

I sent private messages to ALL the people who participated and they didn’t even acknowledge receipt. I was devastated. It was a Friday and I had planned how I would spend the money that weekend. I closed my Laptop, lay on my bed and forced myself to sleep. I was too shocked to cry. I just had to sleep it off. When I woke up the next day, I was able to look at the event with fresh eyes and I realised that I had very poor marketing in my business. That was why I didn’t make a sale. I studied online marketing, studied brands that were killing it in the marketplace and got better with storytelling.

Other project and activities
Apart from being passionate about storytelling as a tool for brand building and business success, I’m also very passionate about Asthma awareness and advocacy. I lived with Asthma for about 20 years and I know how the disease limited me in certain areas of my life.I currently volunteer with NGOs catering to the needs of people living with Asthma.

Greatest reward
My greatest reward is from people who’ve been impacted by my work and are able to use the lessons in storytelling to live a life of true meaning and contribution to society. Changed lives are my reward.

Testimonials from Entrepreneurs
I’ve had the privilege of working with over 100 entrepreneurs over the past 2 years. Here’s what some of them have to say:
‘’After the program, I actually came online, my online presence increased. However, being a very private person, I don’t open up about myself but she got me to the place where I was able to share my story.

The first time it happened in the program, I was surprised I was able to write so much! Esohe got me to the place where I was able to share my story with other people.
That was where it started for me, I began to share my stories and I found out that people were actually connecting. It was fine and good for me.
If you want to work on your storytelling, please hurry up, Esohe will make you come out of yourself.
She delivers. She is accessible. She gives you value for your money , said’’Amara Nnaji, International Trade Expert and Founder, The International Trade Navigator.

Are Nigerians well informed on story telling?
I don’t think Nigerians are well informed on storytelling as a way of selling their brand. I believe a lot of education has to be done to help entrepreneurs understand the place of storytelling in marketing and selling their businesses. Once education is done properly, more and more people would be open to using storytelling to sell their brand.

Who and what inspire me to be better
The desire to be able to help more people solve real problems with storytelling. I feel like necessity is laid upon me to grow more capacity to be able to educate and help more people. I want to be able to help them use their stories to live a life of meaning, create businesses that provide real value and increase their impact and contribution to humanity.

I Am a Woman Of Rubies
I share similar stories, challenges, pains and scars with other women in business trying to make a difference and live a life of true meaning.I am a Woman Of Rubies because I care about helping other people be better and I support women in business.

Final word for young budding female entrepreneurs
There are 2 major parts to running a successful business: building the business and earning from it. You have to find a way to protect your earnings while focusing on building for the long run. Lastly, build emotional stamina; there will be tough days and many disappointments. Entrepreneurship is not for the faint-hearted, but if you are willing to commit to it against all odds, the world will hear your story and celebrate you.



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