Picture the motivational speaker who has never built any successful business himself but who postures to know how to build one. Picture the armchair critic. No hands-on experience at the things he opines about. That’s the picture that many Nigerian tech blogs present.
The meat of this post is that it is easy to pontificate about why this startup failed and that startup founder crashed. It is easy to pontificate about what needs to be done by startup XYZ to grow and what needs to be done by that other one to become a unicorn.
As with many other pundits elsewhere in the world, Nigerian tech blogs are full of opinions on the business of others and a horrible sense of self-importance.
What many people are not asking yet (or are probably asking in private) is why none of these tech blogs that are experts at why businesses succeed or fail have made a huge success of their own business activities. Aha. Aha. I said, Aha.
I am not talking about those tech pundits that are merely reporting what is going on. The focus here is on those who have appointed themselves judges and arbiters over the success and failures of others.
We know why Nokia’s once thriving mobile business eventually failed and what Nokia should have done to not have failed. But we have no idea what to do to grow our readership and traffic. We sure know why IrokoTV laid off staff and what they could have done better to avoid it but our own staff turnover is appalling. We know what the e-commerce stores are doing right and wrong but cannot take that knowledge and use it to scale our own growth.
We know what TECNO is doing wrong business-wise, but TECNO keeps growing and our tech blogs keep struggling. With all our supposed business knowledge, there is little in our own corners to show that we really know anything.
With the seeming laser-focus understanding of the startup scene, where are the tech blogs that are raking in huge amounts of cash and running as viable business entities? Where are the Nigerian tech/startup blogs that have lived the startup life and have the results to show for it? Where are the Nigerian tech blogs that are not struggling to grow their reader base and traffic?
But we all know that talk is cheap.
Practicing what one preaches is often a different ball game from self-appointed pontification. Our tech pundits may need to tone down on the hubris and put more thought into building viable tech media businesses than pontificating on why other tech businesses are nailing it or wailing. Talk is cheap.
By the way, those tech blogs who have preached apps as the beginning and end of everything, how are their apps doing? 50-100 installs. 100-500 installs. Hard to find one with 1,000 installs. It isn’t quite working out that way; is it?
In general, the Nigerian tech space is characterised by too much noise and very little substance. Our tech blogs are a reflection of that. Any surprises?
Now that I am done pontificating, I’m heading back to my desk to figure out what I need to do next to grow this business of mine. After all, he who points a finger…..