I believe in Africa - the continent has a raw beauty and this echoes true in her people. I also believe that blogging is one of the most understated (perhaps even underestimated) ways of conveying powerful ideas. Ideas can change countries. Ideas can change Africa. As a combination, blogging can harness the best in Africa, remove oppressive obstacles and empower her people to rise up towards a beautiful future. An inclusive future where Africa (and Africans) are truly empowered.
I’m speaking to an African audience. Do my words resonate with you? They should! Africa is so much opportunity and potential. The question is: who will ultimately benefit from Africa’s opportunity? Will it be foreign investment that strips out resources and dividends whilst enriching a small elite. Or, will Africa all benefit from the vast untapped opportunity.
Here is my truth. If Africa is to succeed, we all need to own our futures. We need to stand up for inclusiveness and humanity. However, we also need to recognise that it is WE (us) who need to take ownership of where we go to from here. It’s wrong to expect the world to intervene. Africa needs to empower herself. I see blogging as a powerful way to communicate messages. I see blogs as a conduit into the international arena - on an equal footing. Blogging provides Africa with an opportunity to share ideas (and to benefit from ideas from overseas countries).
Access to International Markets
The internet provides a gateway to the world. Seriously! Young children throughout Africa have a previously unknown ability to understand the way the rest of the world thinks, operates and works. “Overseas” is no longer such a far away place - certainly not in an ideological sense.
Smart phones and similar mobile devices have also broken down the barrier between Africa and the rest of the world.
Africa, through mobile phones, is now highly connected to the world. This will only be increasing in the future. I believe that signals potential.
Whereas the internet provided connectivity, it was also exclusively for technical experts to benefit from - creating a barrier to entry for the average African person. Blogging, on the other hand, is relatively simple.
“Everyone” could have their own blog. Starting a blog isn’t so expensive. Yes, it costs money, but it’s relatively affordable - and creates so much opportunity. Including the opportunity to make money.
I want to draw attention to something. When we try to make money by competing in our own ecosystems (such as looking for business in the same community), we’re only ever moving wealth within the ecosystem. This hasn’t introduced new wealth into Africa. When you expand your market beyond your ecosystem, then you are taking about wealth creation and wealth generation. Blogging, by it’s international nature, is exactly the wealth generation opportunity that Africa needs. Africa just needs to harness it!
The Importance of Blogging in English or an African Mother Tongue
I’ve thought long and hard about this question - should African’s blog in English, another language or their mother tongue? With a great deal of introspection, my honest view is that blogs should be in English if they are going to empower African in a financial way. However, if they are going to spread ideas - then mother tongue is probably best.
My logic is that the majority of the international community can speak and read English fluently. This means that the USA, Canada, Australia, and UK are all target markets. Even people from Europe and Asia who speak a different language are generally able to read and understand English in a functional way. Use English to access these markets.
Own Your Blog
To be empowered, you need (or, at the minimum, should want) total ownership of your content. This is so that you control the direction of your ideas and the development of your blog. Blogging without undue influence and restrictions.