Pulse MCM: Fastlane’s Estone Wandera on life as a Marketer.

Born and nurtured through childhood from Masafu sub county-Busia district, Isaac Wandera Estone is a son to Nafula and Patrick Wabwire Estone.

Estone is a marketing student at the chartered institute of marketing and is currently working with Fastlane media as a marketing communications strategist. He is strong in connecting with people and prides himself on his reputation for being social.

 MTN Pulse caught up with the Marketing guru Estone on Friday evening at his office for an in-depth interview on what it means to be a marketer.

Care to share with us about your Education background?

I went to a village school in Busia for my Primary, joined Mwiri for 6 years then joined Makerere University for a bachelors’ degree in Science in Actuarial Science which I struggled with for over 4 years. I had always had a passion in sales and marketing while in university, so after several attempts with actuarial science and failing, I enrolled to the chartered institute of marketing taking my lectures at Uganda Management Institute now at level 4.

What is marketing to you?

To me, marketing is my career, my source of income, it is my number one contribution towards saving businesses from collapsing. Marketing has and is continuing to build a whole new family.

Marketing is your career? what is your view about traditional marketing?

Traditional marketing is equally as important as digital marketing, at least for now. There are some components of traditional marketing like outdoor advertising that are here to stay like billboards. Companies blending both traditional and digital in right proportions are surely doing great. You will see a MoMo Nyabo billboard with Bosco on it and you will feel just as good as seeing a MoMo Nyabo video on social media.

Digital Marketing? How is it different from traditional marketing?

It Is basically managing and executing of marketing activities using electronic media such as email, web and wireless media in conjunction with digital data about customer’s characteristics and behavior through identifying, anticipating and satisfying customer requirements profitably.

How best can brands/Individuals gain from marketing?

Brands should put the customers at the center of their businesses and focus on customer needs and wants. The same thing applies to an individual, create content that is valuable to your audience, it could be entertaining, educative or even informative. That way you gain from marketing.

As a Marketer, what Challenges have you came across in this your area of prowess?

User proficiency is still very low in most parts of the country. Digital is still limited to a few urban towns of Uganda with Kampala dominating. and most business owners are not yet familiar with digital technologies and this poses a very big challenge when it comes to pitching ideas to clients and even managers of organizations where I work. Challenges like social reporting (explaining the analytics to your boss) Marketers in our society are not really appreciated as much as they should. They are still paid in peanuts and yet marketing is like the heart of a business, when it is in a bad state, the business gets in a bad state too, when it stops, the business dies, what our universities are teaching marketers is almost out dated now. The industry is evolving very first with the technology (digital penetration), population behavioral change and environmental change. Advanced institutions like CIM are quite expensive for an ordinary Ugandan student.

What are the best techniques you would recommend for a better marketing world?

There is no better technique than being customer-centric, you do this right, your customers will become your advocates and your marketing spend will be cut.

So Estone, what are your Future prospects?

I hope to be one of the most brilliant brains in the marketing industry with a focus on customer experience. I had a startup last year but I gave it a break, so I could first accomplish a few things, but I hope to resurrect it in the next couple of months as a customer experience agency. With a great team and good management framework, Fastlane is a promising startup to enable me achieve this.

Any Advice to our Pulsers who want to achieve their dreams in life?

Patience, most young people want to see immediate results, they’ve been taught to believe in hacks and not processes. And if the hacks don’t work, they run out of patience and get frustrated. So i advise them to always trust the process and be patient.

Secondly, Professionalism is key, it might not seem like a pressing need now but in future, brands are going to want something beyond passion and experience. Add purpose to your passion, that way you will have a sense of direction, we have all felt our passion burning out and felt like giving up but because we had a purpose, we kept pushing.

Lastly, build relationships, strategic ones and friendly ones, and this is way easier in this social media age. The internet has so much information, pick out what you are interested in and learn.