DIGITAL MEDIA AND INDIGENOUS EDUTAINMENT PROGRAMMING FOR PROMOTING CUSTOMER ENGAGEMENTS IN A BUSINESS WORLD.

Author:Oduaran, Choja
 
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INTRODUCTION

In the realm of business, media channels serve as portent platforms for information dissemination and interactions for members of modern societies (Pagani & Mirabello, 2011; Okorie & Bigala, 2016; Okorie & Salawu, 2016; Kayode-Adedeji et al., 2017; Okorie & Bwala, 2017; Okorie & Salawu, 2017; Oduaran & Okorie, 2018). In the same vein, digital media serve as a potent marketing communication tool for promoting business in most modern societies. Scholars agree that distal media is a unique marketing communication platforms that can positively affect the different ramification of the business world (Pindaye, 2017; Okorie et al., 2018; Viglia et al., 2018). Okorie et al. (2018) observed that "advances in technology are playing significant roles in the emergence of several devices and applications with ease of use. The internet and other mobile technologies have formed veritable media platforms". In essence, digital media have revolutionized the world of business.

In recent times, advertisers have integrated the use of digital media for edutainment purposes. From a general viewpoint, edutainment is derived from the combination of two words (education and entertainment). It refers to any type of entertainment program that is primarily meant for educational purposes. The educational function that it carries can be related to formal in different school institutes or to informal learning in daily life context (Wallden & Soronen, 2004). Rogers et al. (2004) refer to "edutainment as the process of designing and implementing entertainment messages that seek to increase audience members' knowledge about an educational issue, create favourable attitudes, shift social norms and change overt behaviour". In the same vein, Aksakal (2015) opines that edutainment approach provides young people the opportunity of having a good time whilst experiencing the way of creating, using information resources and teaching methods. This could go a long way to increase enthusiasm in order to teach them information and pass on knowledge. Interestingly, many organizations have adopted the use of edutainment programmes as a strategic approach to promote goodwill and corporate reputation. For example, GTB Nigeria has a digital media platform (Ndani TV) that provide edutainment programmes for their prospective and existing customers, which meet their information needs. Against this background, this study examined how digital media have influenced consumer engagement, using edutainment programmes of Ndani TV as a study example. This study has among other objectives the following:

  1. To determine the attitude of young Nigerians towards edutainment messages of Ndani TV.

  2. To examine the influence of indigenous edutainment programmes on customer engagement.

    THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK

    This study is anchored on the Schema theory. A schema is a cognitive structure consisting of organized knowledge about situations and individuals that has been abstracted from prior experiences; it is a pre-existing assumption about the way the world is organized (Axelrod, 1973). It is used for processing new information and retrieving stored information (Graber, 1998). The concept of schema is widely used by scholars to understand how people process information. Fiske and Kinder describe schemas as "serviceable but imperfect devices for coping with complexity". They imply that people are cognitive misers whose limited complexity for dealing with information forces them to practice "cognitive economy" by forming simplified mental models.

    Graber (1998) has done research that indicates that people use schemas to process media messages. People process media messages by a number of strategies which includes; a straight matching of a message to a schema, processing through inferences and multiple integration of a story with several schemas or schema dimensions. Graber also noted that in processing media messages, people tend to store conclusions drawn from the evidence rather than the evidence itself.

    The schema theory proposes that people attempt to match the information they receive from the mass media to an existing schema through a number of different matching strategies. If a match can be found, some part of the information or inferences from the information is likely to be stored in the form of a modified schema. If a match cannot be found, the information is likely to pass by without being assimilated. Schema theory explains how an individual tries to make sense out of a complex world.

    Graber notes that schemas perform four major functions:

    (1) They determine what information will be...

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