April 2018 marked the end for the ANN7 website aswell as the New Age newspaper website. These online news websites have been replaced by the new online website called the AfroVoice. This move has been inspired by Mr Manyis efforts to cut ties with the controversial Gupta family who were the founders of ANN7 and The New Age.
In the short run this move by Mr Manyi will be costly as it means loosing the online value that has already been created over the past few years for the ANN7 and New Age websites.
As from the 30th April 2018 anyone visiting the ANN7 and New Age website is directed to the Afrovoice website.
The process of creating new online presence based on an existing one is never a pleasant one.
Websites develop economic value over time based on adding content, getting more visitors and adding more services. Both ANN7 and The New Age had accumulated some form of economic value over the years that has now been demolished with the discontinuation of the websites. Just the domain names could have amounted hundreds of thousands by virtue of the number of people who visited the websites.
The Afrotone media company has opted for redirecting audience from the old website to the new website. Ideally the company should have positioned Afrovoice as the holding website from which the audience can access both ANN7 and The New Age website. The process of closing ANN7 and The New Age should have been conducted in parallel with the creating of the AfroVoice website. Such a transition would have allowed the company to extract more value from the previous websites such as content.
Loss of Content
Loss of content will be another major challenge that may be experienced with the manner in which the transition has been managed with ANN7 and The New Age.
The process of moving from one site to another often leads to major challenges especially with content heavy websites. Parallel approach would have enabled the company to manage this challenge much better.
Mr Manyi probably had very limited options in view of the fact that this rebranding move may have been inspired by the need to retain the DSTV deal to keep the video news going.
This was a matter of do or die for the company. In the long run this is probably the best move by the new owner of the media entity.
With that in mind it is worth considering opportunities that lie ahead for this new website.POSITIVES
Opportunity 1: Now that Manyi has hit the restart button on his media company there’s an opportunity for the company to be mainly digital.
The website may just be the beginning for Afrotone media. There’s more that can be done to enhance its digital presence and economic value. The first in this regard may be to integrate print and digital whilst working towards shrinking the print part of the business.
Opportunity2: Another opportunity for Afrotone lies with embracing its African brand not just in look and feel with logos but by advancing African languages online.In the African market a new online entrant is always welcomed as the continent and country needs more diversity in the news front.
Long live the spirit of African media with Afrotone, long live.