#CCR_News : 10 Minutes With Fashion PR Guru, Moriam Musa By Onna Okafor[Pulse Interview]

Here today is another PR proffessional who helps to shed more light into her lifestyle and how she had managed to come this far.

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With a first degree in Diet & Clinical Therapy from the University of Ibadan, Moriam Amusa had a sure path in the medical line cut out for her. Till an intense passion for fashion had her trading her lab coat for a notepad.

After a 5-year stint in City People as Fashion Reporter and later Fashion & Style columnist, Moriam would eventually leave to set up Nigeria’s foremost Fashion PR company, Morsi PR. Regardless of the switch though, Moriam says her medical background helps keep her grounded in the glitzy world of fashion.

“In this industry, people expect you to look and speak in a certain way but my medical sciences background won’t let me be that way. You’re expected to get results by saving lives so that has influenced the way I relate with people. People tell me ‘oh don’t say hello to her first, don’t you know who you are?’ but in the hospital, the doctor will walk up to you first to ask how you’re doing. So in that area, my background has really shaped me, it’s made me really grounded.”

Onna Okafor recently caught up with her at the Dare 2 Dream initiative press conference which held at the Federal Palace Hotel and a quick chat on her career was took, disdain for snotty Nigerian celebrities and love for perfumes.

Excerpts.

The Road To Morsi PR

Morsi PR is Nigeria’s first official fashion, beauty and lifestyle PR agency. We promote both Nigerian and Nigerian brands in the diaspora. We’ve worked with the likes of Lanre Da-Silva Ajayi, BM Pro, Alter Ego, Polo Ralph Lauren lounge, Beth Modelling and many others. I studied Diet & Clinical Therapy in the University of Ibadan but my love for fashion led me to fashion reporting. I started out as a fashion reporter in City People and rose to become the Fashion & Style columnist. While  I was there, I noticed there was a huge gap between the fashion designers and the end consumers because people didn’t seem to know where to find their items. So I decided to start a business that would be the bridge connecting the Nigerian designers to the outside world/customers as it were. Also because I thought they were putting in so much into their work yet they were not being properly reported. Our first client was Lanre Da-Silva Ajayi and we took her out for her first show in South Africa, from there we grew. Initially people didn’t understand what I was trying to do, they were blurring the lines between PR and PA. But 5 years down the line, I think the message has been gotten and we’ve been expanding.

Taking A Stand

I’ve been 10 years in this industry and there’s been a lot of growth from when I started till now. Back in the day, you wouldn’t hear of fashion publicists. You’d hear of PR companies but they were more geared towards Oil & Gas and Banking. But I took the bold step to say I choose to be the voice of these designers, beauticians and lifestyle brands. People urged me to go into PR for Oil & Gas as that was more profitable but I insisted on fashion because going into anything else wouldn’t be different from what everyone else was doing. Thankfully today it has paid off because there are several PR persons and the bloggers are increasing everyday. So I’m happy that I’ve been here from the beginning.

Career Highlight

I’d say when my client says thank you. It’s not about how much they pay me or how far we’ve gone but the value and satisfaction I’ve been able to provide. With that I can go home and sleep at night saying ‘yes, I did it for this person’. But a moment that stood out for me was when I got a grant from the government. People didn’t quite understand what a fashion publicist was and I still managed to clinch the Youwin grant, I was actually one of the first main awardees to get a grant. Another moment was when I won the MABVI award for being the best Nigerian blogger focused solely on Nigerian brands.

Guilty Pleasure

Perfumes. I love perfumes, I never throw the bottles away. I have about 3 huge bags of perfume bottles. I’ve actually never thrown a bottle away since my university days.

Favourite Brand

Pleasures by Estee Lauder

Favourite Nigerian Designer

Eredappa. She is a very rare talent, she still blows my mind with her finishing. Her beading is like no other. She is an artist with a keen eye.

Must-Have Fashion Item

Perfumes again (general laughter). You have to smell sexy, plus you need to be able to make an entrance…and an exit. Shoes could be knock-offs, clothes might not fit well and even the powder could even be the wrong shade but a sexy perfume would smell good on anyone, you can never go wrong with it.

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