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Case Study

Africa's
Business
Heroes

Africa’s Business Heroes (ABH) is the flagship African philanthropic program of the Jack Ma Foundation. Its mission is to support African entrepreneurs by highlighting and cultivating local talent that is having a positive impact in their communities and beyond, as well as to inspire an entrepreneurial movement in Africa.

Africa’s Business Heroes (ABH) program is an annual competition initiated by the Jack Ma Foundation to recognize, empower and celebrate aspiring and impactful entrepreneurs driving positive change in Africa. The competition not only provides visibility and recognition to these entrepreneurs but also equips them with the necessary resources and mentorship to scale their businesses.

Entrepreneurial support

ABH directly uplifts talented African entrepreneurs through its prize competition, providing substantial financial backing through a $1.5 million grant pool shared among the top 10 finalists.

Inclusivity and engagement

ABH actively welcomes entrepreneurs from all African countries, sectors, and age groups, emphasizing inclusivity through English and French applications. The initiative engages participants and celebrates African innovation.

Finalists' journey

The ten finalists chosen annually for the ABH grand finale receive extensive exposure through top-notch video narratives, media interviews, and valuable mentorship opportunities.

Our Task

As ABH’s social media agency since 2021, Smith Aegis has been responsible for managing the competition’s online presence on LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Twitter. This case-study aims to showcase the significant impact ABH has made through its social media efforts and how it has leveraged various platforms to inspire positive change and amplify the voices of African entrepreneurs.

ABH’s collaboration with Smith Aegis has played a pivotal role in the organization’s journey to empower and recognize aspiring African entrepreneurs. ABH’s social media success is the result of partnerships between ABH, The Jack Ma Foundation, our agency Smith Aegis and other stakeholders. These partnerships demonstrate the importance of collaboration and cross-sectoral cooperation in achieving sustainable development goals.

IMPACT

Our Contribution to the ABH mission

Social Media Management

we took on the exhilarating challenge of propelling Africa’s Business Heroes (ABH) into the social media spotlight, amplifying the impact of this transformative initiative. Here’s a glimpse into our journey:

1. Promotional Campaigns: Leveraging platforms like LinkedIn, we orchestrated compelling promotional campaigns that showcased the remarkable stories of ABH finalists and winners. Through strategic storytelling and targeted outreach, we captivated audiences, driving engagement and excitement.

2. Brand Awareness: Our relentless efforts in building ABH’s online presence paid off tremendously. From highlighting ABH’s mission to spotlighting its activities, we cultivated a thriving digital community of over 250,000 followers by the end of 2023. Our consistent messaging solidified ABH’s reputation as a driving force for African entrepreneurship, garnering widespread recognition and support.

3. Engagement: Interacting with our audience became a cornerstone of our strategy. We made it a priority to respond to queries, share updates, and foster discussions, nurturing a dynamic and inclusive space for dialogue within the ABH community. This proactive engagement not only strengthened our connection with followers but also facilitated valuable connections among entrepreneurs, mentors, and supporters. 

4. Community Building: Beyond numerical growth, our focus was on fostering genuine connections and collaborations. By curating content that resonated with our audience and facilitating networking opportunities, we created a supportive ecosystem where entrepreneurial dreams flourished. This dedication to community building propelled ABH to new heights, empowering countless individuals to pursue their aspirations.

By the end of 2023, our collective efforts had yielded staggering results. ABH’s social media presence boasted over 240 million impressions and 8+ million video views, cementing its status as a prominent voice in the entrepreneurial landscape. Our strategic initiatives had not only expanded ABH’s reach but also fueled unprecedented levels of engagement and enthusiasm across the digital sphere.

Content creation & Collateral design

At the heart of Africa’s Business Heroes (ABH) lies a commitment to empowering entrepreneurs through inspirational storytelling, valuable networking opportunities, and actionable insights. Here’s how our agency elevated ABH’s digital presence through strategic content creation and captivating collateral design including pushing for the application period impressions to a staggering 41 Million+ Impressions.

Success Stories: Central to our strategy was the creation and dissemination of success stories that showcased the journeys of ABH finalists and winners. Through visually stunning graphics, captivating videos, and engaging written narratives, we brought these stories to life, inspiring audiences across social media platforms.

Networking Opportunities: In addition to celebrating individual achievements, we curated content that facilitated meaningful networking opportunities within the ABH community. From virtual meetups to online forums, we provided platforms for entrepreneurs, mentors, and supporters to connect, collaborate, and exchange ideas. Our collateral design played a crucial role in promoting these events, enticing audiences with visually appealing invitations and promotional materials.

Entrepreneurship Insights: ABH’s commitment to fostering entrepreneurship extends beyond recognition and celebration—it’s about equipping aspiring entrepreneurs with the knowledge and resources they need to succeed. Through thought-provoking articles, insightful infographics, and interactive webinars, we shared valuable entrepreneurship insights, covering topics ranging from business strategy to financial management.

Continuous Engagement: Beyond content creation, we maintained a consistent presence on social media, engaging with followers, and facilitating ongoing conversations about entrepreneurship in Africa. Whether through live Q&A sessions, interactive polls, or behind-the-scenes glimpses, we kept audiences engaged and informed, nurturing a vibrant digital community around the ABH brand.

Impactful Results: Our content creation and collateral design efforts yielded tangible results, driving increased engagement, and fostering deeper connections within the ABH community. By leveraging social media as a powerful storytelling and networking platform, we contributed to ABH’s mission of empowering African entrepreneurs and catalyzing positive change across the continent.

Event Support

In 2023, Africa’s Business Heroes (ABH) celebrated its grand finale, marking the apex of a rigorous selection process spanning seven months. This momentous occasion coincided with the program’s fifth anniversary, adding an extra layer of significance to the proceedings. The 2023 ABH Summit and Grand Finale served as a dynamic convergence point for a diverse array of entrepreneurs and stakeholders.

Over two immersive days, the event showcased top-tier businesses led by ABH heroes, featured engaging live podcast sessions, and offered enriching masterclass experiences. The climax of the event arrived on day two with the eagerly anticipated Grand Finale showdown.

Our support for ABH extended beyond logistical assistance. Through targeted social media campaigns, we drove registration for the event, resulting in a remarkable turnout of 6,500 registered attendees from 100 countries, supplemented by over 10,000 online participants.

During the event, our team provided real-time coverage through live social media posts, ensuring a continuous flow of updates to the global online community. The impact was tangible, with the #ABHat5 #ABH2023 hashtags generating an impressive 27.2 million impressions and reaching 29.4 million individuals, amplifying the reach and resonance of the ABH mission.

ScaleUp Sessions - Brand Identity Design

Africa’s Business Heroes (ABH) Scaleup Sessions represent a quarterly symposium of entrepreneurial masterclasses designed to foster knowledge exchange within the ABH community. These sessions offer ABH heroes, esteemed judges, and strategic partners a platform to impart their wealth of entrepreneurial wisdom. Covering pertinent topics tailored to the African entrepreneurial landscape, these sessions offer an invaluable opportunity to glean insights from some of Africa’s most accomplished entrepreneurs and business leaders.

As part of our mandate to enhancing the sessions experience, we crafted a distinctive brand identity and logo design, imbuing the Scaleup Sessions with a recognizable and impactful visual presence.

Recognitions & Awards

Our Creative Director, Eric Waibochi received the ABH 100 award during Africa’s Business Heroes’ 5th Anniversary Summit. This award celebrates individuals for their significant contributions to the African entrepreneurial ecosystem. 

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