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Kago Ngwato: Quintessence Lifestyle Blogger to follow in 2020!

Lifestyle bloggers are known by lot of people across the country for their impeccable taste and their eye for all that is beautiful in the world. The most renowned lifestyle bloggers share and inspire audiences on a wide range of topics, including home, travel, family, food, fashion and beauty.

By sharing blog posts inspired by their everyday lives and interests, they are able to appeal to diverse audiences, and come across as relatable and genuine. For these reasons, top lifestyle bloggers have become central components of many brands’ influencer marketing companies. First things first, what is a lifestyle blog? It’s no secret that the blogging world is full of a ton of different niches. Blogs can be made up of financial information, family adventure, lifestyle tips and hacks, and really anything and everything that the blogger wants to write about.

Lifestyle blogs are different than any other type of blog out there. They tend to focus on being a bit more visual and make certain that they are using high-quality images to showcase their activities and interests. If you actually look up the word ‘’lifestyle’’ in the dictionary, it literally means that it’s the way a person or a group lives. Will there be stories told? Yes. Will there be emotions and stories that may get sprinkled in here and there? Maybe…But what differentiates a lifestyle blog from any other type of blogs is that it focuses on interests and activities, and less, on ‘’storytelling’’ or trying to make a personal connection with words and emotions on the reader.

While there can be similarities between a lifestyle blog vs a personal blog, the two are actually quite different. First and foremost, understand 100% and hear me loud and clear- a lifestyle blog is not a personal blog or a place to showcase a diary of your life. When a blog crosses over into personal stories and emotions, it’s now entered into the realm of a personal blog. While there are plenty of popular personal blogs, it’s imperative to understand that they are completely different form a lifestyle blog.

Now, that we’ve got that understood… Don’t get me wrong here. These two blogs are both super successful in the blogging industry. However, if you look at the followers and the engagement from the audience, it’s plain and simple to see that they attract totally different audience and set of followers for each one. Many bloggers use little bits of personal life throughout their blog to incorporate storytelling into any type of blog. Storytelling is a powerful tool to help build a connection with your audience, but only in a personal blog is it the main focus.

Having a lifestyle blog means that your pictures need to ‘’pop’’ and catch the eye, and one way to have that happen is to have them light and bright located randomly all over the blog. If you ready to start your own lifestyle blog, figure out your niche. If you can zone in on what you really want to focus and blog about before you get started, you’re way ahead of the game and you’ll end up saving yourself a ton of time down the road.

Create a killer blog name, I mean there are lots of blogs out there that you’re competing with once you decide to start a blog. Your blog name needs to stand out and make people want to hang out with you and your ideas. Embrace your unique qualities and be different. If you’re too cookie-cutter, you won’t stand out. Enough with tutorials and I know no questions are too big or small, I am here to lend a helping hand but I would love to stop there and dwell on what I initially wanted to write about.

Kago Ngwato is a young man with an unapologetic passion for exploring life. He wears many hats, an enthusiastic multimedia content creator and an entrepreneur. Kago is a social media community manager of various brands he manages on social media by the day and a blogger by the night. In between all of that, he is also completing his Bachelor Degree studies in Economics and Statistics at the University of Botswana. Some kids are amazing!

In an exclusive interview with Weekend Life, Ngwato in his own words said ‘’Blogging is an art of sharing your valuable opinion and findings out there with the world to create and engage in meaningful conversations that are hardly had. It is also about sharing your own experiences on a matter at hand. A voice for the voiceless’’

He started his lifestyle blog dubbed ONE-7-ONE that is an inclusive creative’ platform for everyone. This is where creative’s stories of strength, resilience and passion get to be shared and celebrated with Botswana and beyond. This digital platform covers travel, food, fashion, wellness, décor, finances, events and exclusive interviews.

‘’This platform strives to inspire people to live life to the fullest. To showcase the best of the good life and to show people that there is life out there beyond their horizon. Most blogs are personal meaning that they are about a particular person’s life but with ONE-7-ONE it is open for guest writers and contributors. At times people have the knowledge and stories they’d like to share with other people but failing to because of the admin of building up a platform. So ONE-7-ONE is that platform created to showcase creative’ talents from photography to writing. It is inclusive in that people from different walks of live whom are mostly experts, if not, fairly learned in a particular niche, get to share their stories and opinions on a matter at hand. I’d like to believe that, that reduces the bias from depending on one particular person’s opinion and findings all the time’’

When you browse through this revamped platform, you will get to find articles on travel, food, fashion and wellness amongst others. The idea is for ONE-7-ONE to be a portal where one get to learn about life holistically in one place hence there are various niches within the platform, Weekend Life learnt.

Quizzed on what makes a great lifestyle blogger, Ngwato said ‘’It is the one who gives people the content; I mean that’s what they want. It is one whom never leaves people guessing or wondering what else went on. If it’s about your recent adventure, let people know what you were up to, where, why, how and when. If you’re a lifestyle blogger and you recently attended an event, people have to feel like they were there when they read your article or see pictures’’

Well, one may be there wondering how bloggers make some coin. ‘’Money is mostly indirectly made in blogging. One thing for sure is that along the way, as a blogger, you acquire skills like social media management, photography, networking, brand management, writing, risk-taking, being observant, balancing, strategy, time management, planning and analysis. A lot goes into creating content so bloggers get exposed to opportunities surrounding that as they would have already acquired the skill.

Opportunities that in most cases are paying once you’re fully fleshed with regards to acquisition of a particular skill. If you’re entrepreneurial, like I am, you could find yourself handling social media accounts of companies because of the experience, knowledge and skill. That of course is applicable with other skills. You monetize them. Directly, although not fully tapped in Botswana, it could be by collaborating with brands. Uploading sponsored posts that are relatable and relevant to your audience’’ he said

Ngwato had the privilege to attend various top class events in and outside the country. He attended these events through invites, media accreditations and collaborations. ‘’I just returned back home form the South African Fashion Week that was hosted in Johannesburg. Other international events include Mercedes Benz Fashion week, AFI Joburg Fashion Week, DSTV Delicious International Food and Music Festival. Locally, I have attended Collections by BK Proctor launch, Haig Club Whisky launch, Johnnie Walker launch, FNB First Wine Shows, Wesbank Botswana International Air Show, Yarona FM Music Awards as well as The Empire Fashion Shows’’

He however implored Batswana to support the creative industry, saying that there is lot that this industry has to offer. ‘’It is the present and the future that we need to embrace as soon as possible. Some people are sleeping on talents because of the professional landscape we have created as a social norm. So I urge all of us in Botswana to tap into this industry and fully support it. Besides that I am a statistician, it is without doubt that numbers don’t lie. The more we support local talent the more we widen up career and job market ultimately contributing towards economic growth’’

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WeekendLife

Why men don’t pardon cheating partners

18th January 2021
Cheating-marriage

It goes without saying that men and women handle pain differently. Especially emotional pain. Men tend to be more emotionally immature compared to women when it comes to matters of the heart.

It is for this reason that men do not handle break ups or cheating as well as their counterparts. Where women have been groomed from a young age to express their emotions men have been told to “suck it up and be a man”. This may be one of the reasons why men are unable to express their emotions. It’s therefore that it can be a tad bit surprising that men cheat the most but are the weakest to deal when cheated on.

Research has proven that men find it difficult to digest being cheated on. British Psychotherapist, Philip Hodson opines that men find it hard to forgive cheating because it affects their masculinity, and to them, it might signal the end of the relationship.

“Men can forgive themselves for their indiscretions, but they find it much harder to forgive their partners for the same. For a betrayed woman, an affair by a man is an offence against her dignity, but for a betrayed man, a woman’s infidelity is an offence against his manhood. It goes right to the core of his identity,” said Hodson.

WeekendLife also interviewed a few gentlemen on their honest feeling about being cheated and if they find it hard to forgive their partners after cheating.  Tinashe Mangiroza said, “From the beginning, men are designed with the potential to have and to reproduce with many spouses. Women on the other hand are more or less designed to focus on one man. Along with this natural design, women have stronger pain tolerance. Yes women feel pain when cheated on, but their tolerance is much higher than that of a man (in view of what I said above).”

“And men on the other hand have a low emotional pain tolerance, hence the higher suicide and murder rates among men. Then remember there’s also the ego element which men have. So when you combine a big ego, low pain tolerance and other things such as selfishness and competing with other men, it almost ends a man’s self-worth when a woman he loves decides to sleep with another man.”

He admits to have been cheated on before which he said it took away his self-esteem and he had to sleep around as a way of easing the pain whilst waiting to heal. Another gentleman who was also cheated at some point, Monwabisi Ndumiso Mgenge, highlighted that when a woman cheated on him it becomes very difficult for him to take her back because loyalty is everything to him.

“This is because most of the times relationship involves sex. You see the person naked you enjoy that, you don’t want anybody having what you have. You are emotionally invested and have imagined the future many times and this is why some get violent cause its trauma really.”

Psychologist at the Obafemi Awolowo University, Prof. Toba Elegbeleye said, “when it comes to marriage, men and women see things differently. He pointed out that a man tends to see the woman as possession, and so, the moment somebody else tries to cross the boundary and interferes with his property, there is bound to be serious problem.”

“So, it is not because women don’t care or they forgive so easily, but the circumstances don’t favour them as they favour men. If women were in a dominant position, they easily would have driven the man away. So, the moment a female has committed herself to marriage, for her to voluntarily and openly get out of it becomes a kind of stigma, and women cannot handle stigma, particularly where children are involved. Mothers would not want to walk away, unless it’s beyond their powers, thus they would rather endure.”

Thabiso Cavin Bogopa, an Empowerment Expert also shared with WeekendLife that men are wired different from women hence their response to cheating won’t be the same. “What may prove to be a difficulty in men forgiving cheating is that, generally speaking men sleep with who they can, women sleep with who they want, so the overarching thing becomes she cheated with her desire, the person she is actually attracted to and the cheated man struggles with that truth, as he realizes that sex for him is opportunity based, while for his counterpart is a deliberate and conscious choice.

This to a certain extent is what forms the challenge for men,” he explained. “Cheating devalues an individual both the cheater and cheated on, but more profoundly manifest in the cheated as they start to decrease in their self-esteem, losing their regard for themselves as they are undermined they may begin to try to address this trauma in multiple ways but more commonly through being exactly what they detest because they are stuck in the experience, they therefore cheat and become messed up.”

“No one gets away with cheating even if you never get caught, you become depleted as a person by the lies, trickery and illicit emotional trade. But if we may, the choice to forgive a cheating partner is a personal choice that goes both ways.”

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WeekendLife

Modelling| Fashion| Etiquette

18th January 2021
Emmanuel Kayenda

It takes more than just having the body for the ramp to be an “it girl/boy” in the industry. A lot hows into being the cream de la cream. This includes intense coaching and being fortified to thrive in Botswana’s modelling industry as well as making a name for yourself beyond boarders.

No doubt that the likes of Kaone Kario, Mmina Gaebonwe and Emmanuel Kayenda are household names today because of their well-crafted talent. Which needs to be passed on even to aspiring models. Raymond Geofrey an Editor and Content Creator at Vogue magazine who is also known for his Pan African story telling through photography, shared with WeekendLife about what it means and what it takes to be an all-round model, who is capacitated to make a living from their craft.

“Models need good etiquette and good communication especially when dealing with clients reaching to them. They should be able to professionally communicate with them. They need to be efficient in their communication. Professionalism also entails time management during bookings, shootings and auditions. Models should always be early by 1 hour 30 minutes. Enquire about contracts and make contact with consultants. This also include seeking legal advice,” he said.

“Models should have business cards and business WhatsApp numbers. They should possess a good social media account such as Facebook pages with clear biographies. Posts should be sponsored.” Knowing how to transcend the ramp as a model is one of the things that is always a big deal to models and agencies. Geofrey highlighted that models ultimately must know how to walk spectacularly on the runway. When it comes to posing, models are often expected to kill it and bring their A game which in turn will help shine their personality.

Geofrey said models do not take time to read and study as well as research about posing. The more models are confident the more they are able to bring out their personalities on the shoot. He said self-awareness is also imperative, as models are required to be aware of themselves. When wearing heels and walking down the ramp, they should catwalk to the beat.

When it comes to the modelling industry in Botswana, they normally complain about numerous things which are pushing the industry backward. One of these he said is industrialization and policy making, the most lacking and key factors in need in the sector. “The modelling industry in Botswana is still not industrialized that is there are no laws or policies currently in Botswana to govern the trade of modelling in Botswana. Modelling is still not a legal registered profession in Botswana,” he said.

“Affiliation of local agencies to global/international modelling agencies; we have seen a rise in business revenue with regards to fashion modelling in Nigeria, Ghana, Uganda, Kenya etc, due to the fact that they are exporting a larger number of models overseas to walk at fashion shows like Paris Fashion Week. This is simply because they have affiliations, partnerships with agents/bookers/agencies based in fashion capitals of the world (Paris, London, Milan & New York).”

Lack of etiquette which he said is rather unprofessional, is one of the things that hold back local models. “A lot of models in the country still walk unranked at shows (New faces, freelance, full time, professional, international model etc). Also models lack training in the art of modelling (posing, runway, social media training, and business acumen.”

In the age of brand ambassadors, models have been key in this aspect in making brands known and marketable. Even so, they are many slots that define and categorize modelling work. “Fashion models are usually booked for shows or by designers. Editorial are more for official print/brand work such as for magazines (print/online), websites, blogs etc. Commercial are more on promoting business services of institutions, government or the private sector (including banking institutions, insurance, services providers etc). Fitness models are for promoting a healthy and active lifestyle, we see them booked by professionals sports/athletes/gym brands or the food & health industry (what is popular now is supplements such as herbal life),” he explained.

Like other countries, where models are paid a leg and an arm, the same should be incorporated in Botswana instead of exploiting them. “By respecting what models do and bring to the table; and you do that by paying them what they deserve on time,” Geofrey said. Geofrey is currently running classes for models called ‘Etiquette Class Models’ which offers runway coaching. It equips models with different types of walks. They also offer social media training and mentoring on running as a model entrepreneur.

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WeekendLife

LERAPO: Becoming a radio host and property analyst

12th January 2021
Thabiso Tshwenyana

Thabiso Tshwenyana is certainly a bright spark. He has been hitting the books, at the same time pushing hustle on radio! Well, you may not know who I’m talking about right now unless I refer to him as ‘Lerapo’, or ‘Bundle of Joy ya Radio’, as he is commonly called by his aficionados on radio.

Lerapo is resolute on taking over the entertainment and broadcasting space, of course wearing many hats as a radio host, content producer and a socialite. Not only that, he is a fresh Real Estate graduate currently functioning as a property analyst.

One may wonder how this young lad (currently 23-years-old) managed to be on radio, at the same time pursuing his Degree in Real Estate. Well, he says it took grit, time management and really doing what one likes. And he is right, because in today’s world anyone can call themselves a presenter. But it takes unparalleled skill, unbreakable determination, and heaps of talent to captivate an audience of millions.

Whether or not you think he’s the best, there’s no arguing that Lerapo is possibly the most prominent young radio presenter to hail from the Botswana. Initially starting his career in 2017, Lerapo earned himself a reputation as ‘Bundle of Joy ya Radio’ by consistently pushing the boundaries of what could be said and done.

His shows consists of outrageous humor and youthful content that’s shocking the radio establishment, and taking young people to cloud 9. The show is called The Youth Café on Duma FM, and airs every Saturday between 2PM and 2PM, broadcasting in vernacular.

When sharing with Weekendlife his startling life on radio and how he will be turning it down this year, he says the journey started back in 2017 at RB2 where he hosted a 30-minute feature. “I am definitely a go-getter. I love radio and this has been my childhood dream! I held onto this dream and survived against all odds. I am happy to be on radio because after all the knockings, snubs and distressing coercions, I persisted nonetheless. Sometimes it was just a matter of being at the right place at the right time.”

Before joining Duma FM in 2019, he was a content producer at yet another youthful urban radio station Yarona FM. At the age of 23-years old, Lerapo has worked at three radio stations, both government and private urban stations. Remarkable! For someone aspiring to be on radio, I can confidently say he is the pluq for inspiration and familiarity.

He continued to dish more on what radio really needs, saying “Taking time to perfect the craft, being open to learn from others and just digging down on books and the internet on how radio works did magic to me. It became easier to comprehend fully what I needed and how to go about getting it.”

Being a radio presenter means having a whole team prior to going on air. This means having a show prep, and reflecting on how the show went down with your producers or programs manager. Programs manager handles the business of the radio station and leave the voice and personality to the presenter.

Presenters have to follow rules of the programs manager even if they may not see eye-to-eye. They may prefer to play safe and repeat music even though sometimes a presenter prefers to take a risk and make changes to the music. Nevertheless, the success of the radio station lies in programs manager’s hands.

“After a show I usually have a reflection on how it went then I plan for the next show. On Tuesdays I have what we call an ‘air check’ with either the programs manager or his assistant to identify hiccups on the previous show and see how best to work on them to have a great delivery on the next show. Since I produce my own show, I give them a preliminary show prep. Once approved, I start contacting guests to be featured on the show and later share the final show prep a day before the show airs with the bosses.”

Still on his show, he does live reads. These are paid adverts that he discusses with the marketing department prior to his show going live. Well, as for a sizzling playlist, the music compiler knows how to serve him right.

He says a great radio hosts listens, reads and makes a show about the listener. ‘A common mistake we make as radio hosts is that we make the show about us and tend to feel that we know more than the listener. We also ought to respect the listener, these are our clients after all. Radio hosts should also refrain from relying on social media for content, most of it is fake and unverified by relevant authorities.”

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