Post Image
    After several years of interacting with startup founders and developing coping strategies for startup growth, I have realised that the Nigerian business environment is a harsh battlefield. It takes grit, sufficient funding, on-hand and on-site strategies, and much appreciation of the Nigerian business environment.
Read more about Business
In this article, I will show the key elements of building a formidable startup company in Nigeria. Beyond these factors, there are other vital ingredients startup founders must acclimate themselves with. These ingredients will keep your head above water and help you navigate the torrents of the Nigerian market.
  • Build Or Belong To A Community

Nigeria is not a place where you build in isolation. Many of us have often been advised to build in isolation and let our results speak for ourselves. While this sounds true, it can be counterproductive because Nigeria is where you need to be in people’s faces all the time. Nigeria is a community-driven society, and isolation and individualism can be mistaken for pride and contempt for people, which turns off many people. Founders must learn to build a people person to grow their brands. People are likely to work more with a friendly founder than a cold and aloof individual. Hence, as a founder, you must either belong to a community or build one. Belonging to a community offers you a ready-made audience that can drive leads. One of the secrets many founders aren’t tapping into is their ability to be thought-leaders through various mediums, especially social media.  Belonging to a community keeps you abreast with the latest in your industry and allows you to collaborate with potential investors and partners. This is why some startups execute several initiatives too to draw attention to themselves. For example, if you run a fintech startup, organising an annual summit around cryptocurrency and Defi brings you to the world audience. What matters most is ensuring that you are worth the hype.
  • Build Your Tribe

Building a formidable and sustainable startup in Nigeria is anchored on having a tribe of teammates who are into what the founder is into. Using the social and cultural models and theories of building a tribe, startup founders must design their tribe around a set of organogram, beliefs, culture, vision, and mission. Building a tribe can be hard, but it begins with the founder and how he views his fellow team members. If you engage in a master-servant relationship, you will likely build a sustainable tribe.
Sign up for the Connect Nigeria daily newsletter
We must understand that as the world is becoming globalised every day, the concept of work is fast changing and becoming dynamic. Hence, the startups of the future are those that are driven by tribe mentality. Tribe mentality is when everyone in the team considers each other as fellow citizens. Bringing that citizenship ideology into the company gives everyone a sense of belonging.
  • Build Products That Solves Everyday Nigerian Problem

Nigeria is a country bedevilled with various problems ranging from insecurity to unemployment, housing deficit, financial management, food scarcity to lack of finance for business owners. One of the reasons why many businesses do not survive their third anniversary is that they aren’t surviving real problems. Many entrepreneurs are interested in executing their fantastic ideas without considering if it has a viable value proposition in the Nigerian market. In this digital finance age, I have seen many founders develop digital products that can’t serve a large community of people. The effect is little ROI and eventual death. Don’t develop a problem and find solutions to it. Find a prevailing problem in the country and build a solution around it. For example, with Nigeria’s housing problem, you can develop a housing agency app that connects stranded home finders to landlords.
  • Simplify Your Solutions 

The Nigerian marketplace is not a place where you talk too much. Nigerians are interested in action and going straight to the point. Your greatest undoing as a startup founder is beating about the bush without hitting the nail on the head. Whether you are developing your business plan or designing your product, your Business must be known for one thing. Whether you’re a FinTech, Agrotech, Medtech, Realtech or whatever, your audience must know your Business and the industry it belongs to.
Register to attend the Connect Nigeria Business Mixer
Beyond this, your audience should easily know which community of people you are out to serve. Therefore, building a simplified solution that everyone can relate to is the hallmark of building a formidable business in Nigeria. Aside from having a definite service you offer, your product must be easy to navigate. Hence, if you’re offering a digital service, your UI and UX must be friendly and easy to use.
  • Have Nigerian Brand Story

Another way to build a formidable startup is to have a strong brand story that can capture the philosophy and the mood of your audience. This is why a brand story is defined as a cohesive narrative that encompasses the facts and feelings created by your brand (or Business, if you prefer). It is different from traditional advertising, which is about showing and telling about your brand; a brand story must inspire an emotional reaction. You need a brand story for your content marketing. This will help you build brand trust, grow visibility, and create awareness for the Business, all while adding value and generating revenue for the company.
  • Create Speedy Service By Outsourcing

Nigeria is very busy, and customers are usually impatient with brands that don’t offer speedy services. Any delay or hitch  In a country with various competitors, your greatest undoing will be doing all operations in-house. Outsourcing aspects of your business operations can help cut costs, save time, and give you the latitude to focus on your customers. Let me give you an example, Microsoft Inc. outsources its product maintenance to a different company known as Infosys. Featured Image Source: Freepik
Got a suggestion? Contact us:

You might also like:
This article was first published on 19th September 2022


Nnaemeka is an academic scholar with a degree in History and International Studies from the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. He is also a creative writer, content creator, storyteller, and social analyst.

Comments (2)

2 thoughts on “Key Ingredients for Building a Formidable and Sustainable Startup Company in Nigeria”

  • Here at this facility, they treat you like family. They are awesome and
    take the time to take care of their patients. Very well recommended.

  • Hello there! This is my first comment here, so I just wanted to give a quick shout out and
    say I genuinely enjoy reading your articles. Can you recommend any other blogs/websites/forums that deal with the
    same subjects? Thanks.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *