If there is anything capable of making people equally excited and disappointment, It has to be an awards nomination and ceremony. The first feeling is usually excitement especially when one is nominated or their acquaintance or channel . What then follows are various opinions on why and how certain procedures should be followed and done in such a manner as compared to that other one.

The Tribe of Influencers last year announced that they will be running creative awards in 2018, an idea received with praise from creatives considering that not much was done to appreciate their work on a large scale. The next step was announcing the different categories and opening nomination to the public. The categories did cater for a huge number of bloggers and it’s no doubt there are so many submissions because yes, Zimbabweans do blog despite the high data charges. The shift from excitement to disappointment came after the nominees list came out and the voting rules allowed one to vote as many times as possible. Some then felt short changed and disadvantaged as a result and started losing faith in the whole process. Understandably so, this morning penning this post I saw a huge margin between two blogs of over 900 votes! This is attributed to having an unlimited supply of votes per person across all categories. It would have been easier to be granted say 1 vote per person per category per day, but alas the adjudicators have their reasons.

However going through the list of nominees and the votes there are things I picked up that we can build on as bloggers, vloggers, and podcasters. For one, I am glad these nominees came out at the beginning of the year like this, that way we can see which gaps we need to cover in the market and work on them. Before I digress, here are a few points we can build on:

  1. Pluck the Low hanging fruits!

This one is for the newbie bloggers or those who wanna try blogging and don’t know where to start. Looking at the categories you can see the imbalance in the number of nominees per category. I chose to ignore the possibility that it may be because there were too few submissions or the others didn’t match up to the required quality. Instead take it as a market you can tap into because the competition will be minimum and it’s easier to have a large following especially if the other creatives aren’t as consistent. Teen bloggers, Family and Parenting, Events and Weddings, Food and Drinks, Relationships and Dating, Tech, Education, and Humanitarian categories all have the fewest of nominees. These are categories one can easily try out when entering the blogging sphere then branch out when they are a household name.

   2. Do not reinvent the wheel

Sometimes you really do not need new techniques to stand out. You can just look at what other creatives in the same market as you are doing and cleverly add enough twists to make yours feel fresh and new. How can you do this? Look at the category you are placed in, visit your competitors pages despite the number of votes they are getting, learn other methods they are implementing that you aren’t and build on those. You are probably nominated in a particular category because you share the same target market and interests, tap from that moving on. You are guaranteed a bigger chunk of the market at the end of the day.

   3. Collaborative space

If there is anything I am big on, it’s collaboration. Some ideas are too big for individual execution but require collaborations with creatives in the same market as you (other ideas even allow collabos across categories). Again visit some of the blogs and see what they are about and work together. Beyond these awards we are all creatives pushing the Zim narrative beyond national and regional borders. Beyond getting this award the bigger picture for most of us is corporate sponsorship among others so we really need to work together in the collaborative space. Something I really appreciated with the nominees is the geographical dispersion of creatives, which makes collaborative with other Zim creatives beyond borders a possibility and exciting idea to venture.

I’m shocked with the number of nominees in the Photography category considering the vast amount of photographer credits on almost every article you read (good quality images by the way). Also impressed with the Podcast category which is growing with each coming year in Zim. Maybe we are finally keeping up with regional trends after all. Over and above everything, let’s build from these awards and make this year the most vibrant creative year in Zim. There is so much content to research, document and safe guard for ourselves and regional counterparts and it is up to us as bloggers, vloggers, and podcasters to take up this challenge. All the best to the nominated creatives. Click here to see the categories and vote for your favourite blogger, vlogger, and podcasters. Oh that Tribe Of Influencers website is bomb! Thumbs up to Studio Geeked.