Adapt or die: Steve Babaeko’s X3M tells African businesses

Adapt or die: Steve Babaeko’s X3M tells African businesses

Steve Babaeko X3M Ideas has a simple message for African businesses and that is either to Adapt or Die. The message, contained in a press statement on Friday, the marketing communications company argues that just like the dragons, businesses in Nigeria and on the African continent will only win when they evolve.

“Adapt or Die, that is the single most important rule in business. Regardless of the industry, businesses must evolve to remain relevant. This is even more important in the new media industry where technology is ever evolving. The way content is being consumed now is not how it was consumed few months ago, much less years ago,” said the statement.

As a marketing communications company, it went on “we understand the need to continually seek out ways to keep up with the changing tides or get lost in obscurity”.

Therein lies the secret to X3m’s success, an ideal, which it says it wants to share with all of Africa. Continuing the statement espoused the company’s belief that the dinosaurs were great creatures in their time, top of the food chain, giant predators that no other could challenge, but then something changed, the earth began to change and they needed to evolve.

Some dinosaurs, it stated, succumbed to the changing tides, understanding that this was the only route to survival, they evolved and became dragons but the others who were late to the evolution party had no choice but to become preys to the larger, fire breathing creatures.

When discussing the reasoning behind such a massive PR stunt, X3M Ideas C.E.O, Steve Babaeko, spoke of the lesson we can take from the prehistoric times – “We like to believe there is a lot to learn from the dinosaurs. How could a creature so powerful become extinct? While the reasons why these dinosaurs erased off the face of the earth is open to interpretation, we are of the school of thought that they got devoured by bigger, better equipped creatures – dragons. These creature who also were dinosaurs evolved and took over and the dinosaurs who couldn’t, or rather, didn’t evolve became prey. Hence the mantra, Adapt or Die.”

The dinosaurs represent most agencies and media houses who are still stuck up on old ways. Refusing to embrace technology, social media, or the changing tides in media either out of ignorance or doggedness.

This is the most ideal depiction of modern business landscape and we have come to spread the message – Adapt or die. The success or failure of Nigerian businesses is hinged on their ability to evolve.

“When we started six years ago we knew what we wanted to do but we always kept an open mind of how we could evolve with the ever changing business landscape. Both from a business and creative standpoint, we always give room to adapt, room to evolve.

“We at X3M, have gone through great lengths to make our point and it isn’t just about the message, the execution too highlights how controlling the narrative is different now compared to just a few years ago. Some of the channels that would have been previously considered when doing a PR stunt are now obsolete. Back in the day, print was the medium of choice to spread information. Now print gets its news from social media,” Said Babaeko.

Olasunkanmi Atolagbe, X3M Ideas, Group Head, HR/Admin echoed X3M’s shape shifting strategy, saying, “we know the business we’re in but sometimes we forget to continually learn. We get caught up trying to run a business that we forget to study the industry. Steve has been doing this for a long time, he has seen it all, from the era of print, to TV, to social media. He knows how the industry has evolved and how its consumers have adjusted accordingly. An ad that would have been brilliant five years ago may strike a wrong cord now. This keen eye for observing trends and adjusting accordingly is what has set X3M apart.”

He explained that as a content provider, a business owner, or consumer, one must stay ahead of the game, anticipating changes and adjusting strategies to allow the business thrive because of these changes not in spite of them.

“It’s not easy to predict the future of media. Technology often plays a huge part in these changes. It also isn’t easy to adapt but nobody said being successful was going to be easy.

“If there is a trick to it, it is being grounded enough to understand that tomorrow is never given. Once you become safe in the achievements that you have and refuse to continually innovate, you will be left behind as the game evolves,” added Babaeko.

After numerous awards, after stunning numbers in revenue, and a hugely impressive clientele including some of  Nigeria’s biggest brands, X3M remains the leader of marketing communications in Nigeria because we are constantly evolving, constantly winning.

“So our message to African businesses is simple – Adapt or Die”.

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