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Trending catchphrases by KOT used by brands for marketing

By Freya Wanjiku September 8th, 2023 2 min read

Kenyans have a knack for infusing humour and wit into their daily lives.

It’s no wonder that the country’s trending topics and hilarious catchphrases have become a goldmine for brands looking to capture their audience’s attention.

In the marketing world, Kenyan brands have swiftly adapted to this cultural phenomenon. They’ve leveraged trending topics and viral catchphrases to create campaigns that resonate with the people.

Also read: Viral video exposes sale of painted avocados in Murang’a

Here are the trending topics and catchphrases used for marketing

President William Ruto’s viral phrase ‘mambo ni matatu’ printed on a t-shirt on sale. PHOTO | COURTESY

Mambo ni matatu

President William Ruto’s unyielding declaration regarding sugar cartels sent shockwaves through the nation, as he sternly warned that they had three choices: abandon their corrupt practices or face the consequences of either leaving the country, landing behind bars, or even meeting their maker in heaven.

This resolute stance from the President has now taken on a life of its own in Kenyan culture. It has transcended politics and found its place as a meme and an innovative marketing strategy across diverse industries. From the beauty sector to investments, saccos to merchandise, the phrase has become a ubiquitous marketing tool, with each business adding its own humorous twist to the narrative.

In this creative and vibrant landscape, businesses have embraced President Ruto’s memorable statement, infusing it with their unique ‘rules.’

Also read: Exclusive: KRG the Don addresses viral video with Bahati’s wife Diana Marua

Kenyans on Twitter create memes around ‘Mwalimu wa Math’. PHOTO| COURTESY

Mwalimu wa maths package

In a hilarious video, a Kenyan soldier was seen and heard savagely taking a swipe at his former Mathematics teacher.

The member of the disciplined forces and two of his other colleagues poke fun at their tutors who said that they would never amount into something.

Birthing the phrase ‘Mwalimu wa math, ulisema siwezi enda mbali. Hapa ni wapi?‘ (Math teacher, you said I couldn’t go far. Where am I now?).

The video became an online sensation, especially on TikTok, propelling its trend.

However, companies, especially touring ones, took up the opportunity to provide ‘Mwalimu wa maths packages.’ For instance, Bonfire Adventures used the phrase to market their holiday destinations during last month’s school holidays. To them, the package was meant to ‘gift your teacher with a holiday.’

Also read: Fact checking: The viral Nandi County ‘speaking tree that pours out water’

Optica carrefour shopping bag

In a bizarre turn of events, a Carrefour supermarket shopping bag managed to send the residents of the Kiangua area in Imenti South, Meru County, into a state of frenzy, as they feared a lion was lurking in their midst.

Alarmed by the reports, three armed Kenyan Wildlife officers swiftly responded to the situation and approached the concerned homestead. However, their anticipation turned to sheer astonishment when all they discovered was a simple shopping bag tucked away in a hedge.

As it turned out, the bag had been strategically placed by the homeowner, who had opted to use it as a makeshift container for some avocado tree seedlings. The intention was to prevent the seedlings from drying out, a clever and resourceful solution that had inadvertently sparked this unexpected lion scare.

Capitalizing on this amusing incident, Optica, a prominent eyeglasses store, couldn’t resist the opportunity to have a little fun. They shared a photo on social media, humorously suggesting that their spectacles were so effective that they could easily distinguish a shopping bag from a real lion, playfully highlighting the power of enhanced vision through their eyewear.

Also read: ‘I have forgiven you!’ Kenyan woman’s search for father goes viral online