Chooya is Leveraging Word-of-Mouth Advertisement for Business Growth

Chooya is Leveraging Word-of-Mouth Advertisement for Business Growth

African businesses are more aware of the reality of demanding, brand-conscious consumers living in a challenging environment. However, they still have to find the most efficient and effective way to reach them. This essential aspect of commerce has been simplified most effectively by Chooya. The Nigerian E-commerce startup is looking to reinvent marketing and bridge the communication gap.

Chooya’s marketing strategy will provide insights into consumers’ value in a product price and how to reach them best. This is drawn from a powerful word-of-mouth marketing tool. Chooya leverages word-of-mouth advertisement services to connect with customers. Chooya can do word-of-mouth advertising via its platform, Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, WhatsApp, and more.

One of the reasons for this preference is trust. The theorized buyer behavior doesn’t usually apply to the fragmented African markets. People buy things from sellers they can easily interact with and others have recommended.

A phone in every pocket has only scaled the way marketing communication. Social media offers them control over their narratives. Understanding the preferences of this new emerging consumer class is crucial for businesses. Chooya seems to be doing just that. The startup creates demand, reaches the target audience, and develops offers that resonate.

How Chooya Operate

Chooya is an Aba-based e-Commerce startup founded in 2019 by Igwe Uguru (CEO) and Peter Akwa (CTO). The startup initially took off as a search engine for traditional African markets. But, according to Uguru, the startup evolved into digitizing word-of-mouth marketing. This came through his “experience helping his 72-year-old father at his local business.

“Without any form of paid commercial or social media ads, I watched the customers grow every month through word-of-mouth marketing and helped my father train all his five children in the high institution,” said Uguru.

Chooya comes from an Igbo word that means to ‘find something. ‘ The startup aims to bring social media and e-commerce into one platform. Chooya believes that through trusted referrals, eyewitness stories, and first-hand experience.


Igwe Uguru speaking on the strategy of Chooya, said:

“Whenever your friends or loved ones buy something, and you like it, you ask them where they got it. Even when their recommendation comes unsolicited, you are more likely to go with it when you want to make a purchase. That’s word-of-mouth marketing: a customer-to-customer recommendation.

“We’re digitizing it by giving them a platform to do this with their mobile devices and computers. ‘Chooya’ means ‘find it,’ so we’re helping people find the products they want. People generally move towards viral content. So when a customer recommends a product or service and several others agree, it will drive sales,” Uguru.

Chooya has developed a mobile solution called “addds.” The CEO said that this solution helps businesses turn their happy customers into brand advocates who would talk about their services and support to generate more sales.

Why not Lagos?

Chooya plans to target 5,000 businesses by Q3 2022 and help them triple their sales. The eCommerce currently has over 1,000 enterprises on-boarded on its platform. However, Chooya’s decision not to follow the bandwagon but to build in Aba, Abia State, will significantly affect the startup’s growth.

Chooya team receiving the EWC national prize Credit: Chooya

Most success stories in Nigeria’s tech space come from Lagos-based startups. This fact is not hard to imagine as Lagos is Nigeria’s commercial capital. However, with more businesses moving and expanding to the east of Nigeria, Chooya will become a marketing inspiration.

“There are a lot of problems to solve in these regions, and we don’t have nearly enough people for that. So instead, talented people are moving out of this region. But if startups succeed, people will be motivated to come and solve problems and grow,” said Uguru.

The startup emerged as one of the top 100 EWC finalists chosen from 200,000 participants spread across 200 countries. As a result, the startup received a $100,000 national prize and an $850,000 global prize from the EWC, the Global Entrepreneurship Network (GEN), and other world-class partners.