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Gradually and successfully, Nigerian artistes are beginning to enjoy the fruits of their acts from areas different from what they are known for. From A-list musicians, actors, actresses and even the budding ones, big money seems to be the order of the day. The cash is fast rolling in, no thanks to music, but to product endorsements.

The mention of product endorsement by Nigerian entertainers today would readily spark off not just one name, but major musicians, actors and comedians.

Taking it from the recent, Tongolo act, D'Banj comes up as the latest that got an endorsement of a fruit drink called Power Fist in the later part of last year. Sources confirmed that D'Banj's identification with the product got him a whooping sum of 25 million naira to the bargain.

Other names in the endorsement ladder include Daddy Showkey who had his signature on a motorcycle some years ago. Showkey has endorsed products such as Glo, Lotto Nigeria amongst several others.

Mr. Fantastic, Sunny Nneji has endorsed Chi exotic fruit juice, Julius Agwu coming after star Comedian, Ali Baba for the endorsement of Hollandia Milk, Tu Face Idibia made a big one with Guinness Stout. Genevieve Nnaji about two years ago endorsed Lux and became the face of the toilet soap with some millions of naira to the bargain.

Others in the list are Bukky Wright, Rachael Oniga, Jide Kosoko. Beautiful gospel act Benita Okogie was recently on the billboard of Capri sonne, a fruit drink. Juju maestro, King Sunny Ade, Paul Play Dairo, Richard Mofe Damijo, Madam Kofo, Lagbaja, Zakky Adzee, are also amongst those that made millions from the endorsement of the indigenous telecommunication giant Glo.

Product endorsement seems to be a new breakthrough in the entertainment world. It has been on for years though, but not as a money spinning venture. But, today, the reverse is the case. Major products now attracts huge amount of money and the artistes whose faces serve as signatures for these products smiles to the banks.

Various manufacturers and corporate firms now enjoy good romance with these entertainers. To these firms, the faces of actors, musicians and comedians enhanced the sales and promotion of their brands. Most captivating is television commercials, while bill boards, radio and newspaper adverts does also the magic. And the artistes are enjoying all the promotion and money.

Unarguably, it is a popular face that can help promote a product. This is one reason the corporate firms go for these artistes. And this has boosted their brand.

According to Daddy Showkey, product endorsement for him was a secondary advantage. “I'm happy for the opportunity of being able to endorse products for some of the big companies in Nigeria. My brother, I thank God. It is Daddy Showkey that gave me all I have gotten. If I am not Showkey, I would not have been able to get such opportunity.

“I must confess that product endorsement has helped to boost and elevated my life. And I am very happy about this.”

Although, the Ajegunle act would not reveal how rich he has been through product endorsement, he said things have been quite okay financially. “What gives me more joy is the fact that, I'm a Glo Ambassador. Anywhere I go I'm seen as one and this has also helped me in some other ways.”

For star comedian, Julius Agwu, endorsement should be another veritable means of making money for artistes. “It should not take a very long time for artistes to have their signatures on products, but in Nigeria, it is by luck and maybe somebody somewhere remembers that you could be suitable. At any rate, I believe, we are gradually getting there. At least some musicians, actors and fellow comedians are now happy for having the opportunity to endorse products. Even if it is 100 naira you get at the end of the day, what about the national recognition through television, billboards, newspapers and other promotional materials?

“Product endorsement should be another money making area for every entertainer because manufacturer of the products need us to promote those products as much as we need them. They use our faces to promote their brands while we get paid generously. I think it is a good partnership that should be encouraged very well,” D'Banj expressed.

He said further that artistes should make money not only from their royalties as musicians but also from endorsement of products that should come in various forms.