I started blogging in 2008. I studied B.A Publishing Studies at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology primarily with the vision of venturing into a publishing business with my father. Unfortunately, months after completing University; my father passed away and everything changed. I went ahead and did my national service program with Ovational International Magazine because while in University, I won the Best Publishing Student Award, which was sponsored by the company. I carved my teeth in covering celebrity and lifestyle news while working with the magazine until I finally left. Before leaving I started emailing online publications about writing for them and a few agreed at no fee. Eventually I joined the voices of Africa initiative, where I was given a simple Nokia phone to use in creating video content for news on www.africanews.com. I had an invitation to go to the Highway Africa Summit in South Africa to share my experience of mobile phone news reporting and through that summit I learned about others experiences in the area of blogging. When I returned to Ghana I created my first blog! With lots of hard work and persistence I have managed to create a brand online that has grown from strength to strength.
What ignited the spark in you to start a new business venture or to make significant changes in an existing business? How did the idea for your business come about?
When I started writing I was purely led and encouraged by the reach I was getting, the response and the little money that came with it. I was more into the creation process. But some friends of mine visited Nigeria for the first time and met Nigerians doing similar things to me, and learned how they managed to run theirs as businesses. So that became a turning point for me, as I now started looking at blogging/publishing as a business venture. I made changes in how I operated, registered my business, created a variety of options with the services I could provide and put together a rate card for prospective clients.
What were the biggest initial hurdles to building your business and how did you overcome them?
The challenge was finance, generating revenue and things along that line. Sometimes, there were challenges with resources like quality and affordable internet and other tools. I overcame this by believing in my brand, creating value with it and creating dynamic services that allowed me to make money from small entities to corporate bodies. The digital space in Ghana is so not developed and so we are not getting a lot of advertisements in that space but things are improving with time.
What books are you currently reading? And your recommendation for entrepreneurs to read?
I am terrible with reading books but the last one I read was "Olori Supergal: From Social Misfit to Social Media Hero'; it was very practical.
Did you ever deal with contention from your family and friends concerning your entrepreneurial pursuits?
How did you handle it? What would you do differently in hindsight?
I never had any major contention. There were some worries from my mother regarding how people would take it since primarily I write and publish news on people. My family have been very supportive and they even help with administrative stuff sometimes. Now they are all very proud of what I have been able to build over the years.
What would you say was the single most influential factor in your business success?
What do you know today that you wish you would have known when you first got started as an entrepreneur?
Treating everything as a business! Keeping records and managing finance better.
What advice would you give to an upcoming entrepreneur locally and internationally?
Do what you are passionate about and be passionate about what you do.