Success isn’t always about following a straight line, but adapting, growing, and exploring new avenues, no matter where you are in the world. Joshua “Diamond” Olorunfemi, takes us through his non-linear journey from being a relationship consultant to a sought-after Digital Marketer.
Joshua Olorunfemi: The Ladies Man
As an undergraduate, Joshua discovered something about himself. “When you’re unconsciously attractive, you might not know what you are doing, but people just become attracted to you.” It wasn’t money that attracted his female counterparts to him, because he didn’t have it, so he began to pay attention to his innate qualities.
He also knew he couldn’t act on those attractions with multiple persons, so he kept things at a friendship level, and in doing so, he became their Relationship guru. “As your friends, they might have issues with their boyfriends, and because you are the guy they know, they come asking you, ‘Why do guys do xyz?’. And because you are a guy, you put them through a man’s thought process. I wasn’t there to act as their coach, as I was just a friend to them.”
As time went on, he started hosting little talks in his apartment on campus, and the ladies cooked lunch for him to serve as his compensation. At that point, it didn’t occur to him that he could turn it into a business, and all of a sudden, he found himself in the thick of things. That was when he considered perhaps he wasn’t studying the right course.
He had started out wanting to read medicine but ended up studying microbiology, but when he got to his final year, he left it all and went back to study Marketing. His friends, who were about to graduate, thought he was crazy.
Subsequently, his relationship advice sessions found a place on social media and grew to a followership of about 200 people on Facebook. “I was running adverts for my Facebook page, and from there, I would send them to a Facebook group, as I didn’t have a website.” Through research and thanks to a course he took online, he was able to transform his relationship advice sessions into e-books with titles such as— “How to Attract a Dream Partner” and “The Obsession Code: How to keep him crazy about you.” These paved the way into a full-fledged business after he graduated.
“I got a guy to design a website for me and uploaded some books, which clients could download in PDF. At the time, clients would pay money into my account, text their full details and proof of payment to me via WhatsApp. With that, it was easy for me to put calls across confirming payments,”says Josh.
Josh realized he had used the knowledge and skills he got from his marketing training to get his relationship consultancy business off the ground, and if he could do that for himself, then he could do the same for other people and businesses. The offshoot of that was a digital marketing agency, called Digital Marketing Africa Agency (DMA Agency) and an annual Business Growth Summit (the BGSUMMIT).
Josh Diamond and Digital Marketing Africa
What began as a one-man show morphed into a highly efficient team covering key aspects of the business, with Josh even stepping down as the CEO to become the Head of Sales and Marketing. He understood the value in having a team, and not just any team, but one that believed in his vision.
“I don’t want a one man ant-hill. I would rather have 50% of an elephant than 100% of a cockroach. My aim is to bring in different people who believe in what we are building so that we build together. Let’s go all in, roll up our sleeves, and make this a success. And of course, everyone gets well taken care of.”
Josh started the DMA Agency in 2019. “Here we help corporate organizations or businesses scale their business; those people up there who want to push their products or goods, and their brand messaging to more consumers.”
Over the years, Digital Marketing Africa Agency has been serving multiple clients, and working on major large-scale projects involving brands like HipTV, Rite Foods, Janssen Pharmaceuticals of Johnson & Johnson, Flashsale24 E-commerce Marketplace, The Headies Awards, and Access Bank to name a few. The agency also has team members across the globe, managing clients in different industries across the world. He is quick to shift the shine from himself and on to his team members.
“I might be involved in a larger percentage, but I try not to take that glory. There are people who work tirelessly behind the scenes to make things work. If there’s no website, I do not have where to send clients to. If there is no customer development team, how are they going to align with customers and follow up on them? I may be the brain behind the big ideas, but what if I don’t have a team to work with? They are the real business owners while I am just the visionary. They are the ones who make sure operations keep going.”
Business In Africa: Building Local, Thinking Global
Through his annual Business Growth Summit, Josh helps entrepreneurs, business executives, and industry leaders achieve their goals for business growth and expansion.
Josh believes that Africans in Africa need to move beyond the “me, myself, and I” perspective when it comes to their businesses. “You need to think of your business as a global business, but one that is starting locally. Having that knowledge of the global space makes it easy to work your strategy backward. Strategy in the sense that at what point do you start pushing to the global market, and partnering with international organizations? At what point do you ask international bodies to look at what you have that is doing well locally, and can equally do well in their country?”
He also advocates for the exportation of local talent (not to be confused with the “japa syndrome”) “Our people who are traveling to other countries are not being exported. When you are exporting something, you are bringing value back home. Relocating is like cutting loose and moving.”
Instead, he advises businesses to become more intentional with their publicity, as this will help to showcase their value as Africans, and as they begin to expand, they should seek partnerships outside their regions.
And while the government has its role to play in the creation of an enabling environment, the people also need to step up to the plate. “Entrepreneurs and business enterprises are what make countries grow, and not the government. If the entrepreneurs and businesses start pushing their boundaries, somehow, the government will be forced to start listening to them.”
As Josh continues to teach people different ways they can become financially independent by using the Internet, maybe it’s time we start pushing the narrative of “The Nigerian Dream”, which is achievable if, according to Josh, we “think global, build local, expand and scale.”