Meet the compers: Opeyemi Adediran
Welcome to a rather unusual ‘Meet the Compers’ interview, featuring one of Nigeria’s top compers – Opeyemi Adediran. A few weeks ago, Ope tweeted me to ask if he could feature on the blog and after reading his stories I thought it would be a fantastic idea. So, here’s Ope’s insight into comping, African style!
Thanks for joining me here at SuperLucky for a Q&A Opeyemi!
How did you first get involved with comping?
Since I was a kid I’ve had an interest in general knowledge, trivia and quizzing. However, opportunities to partake in prize quizzes were very limited primarily because the world was not as interconnected as it is now – and there was virtually no parental support! With the advent of GSM/Mobile phones in Nigeria in the early 2000s I could answer questions asked on radio programmes and I won a few prizes like ice-cream, a wall clock, T-shirts and caps.
With the increasing use of internet and social media like Facebook and Twitter for giveaways, I finally joined the bandwagon early in 2012. I’ve been aware of the Facebook part for a while before joining but I was discouraged because most of the contests were highest likes/votes (many with the most valuable prizes still are) and are usually won by the same clique of people – I called those people ‘Cabals‘.
What’s the best prize you’ve won, and how did you win it?
The best and most memorable prize I’ve won was an iPad and a plaque from the Secretary to the Government (SGF) of Nigeria to commemorate 100 years anniversary of Nigeria. The contest involved voting after initially writing an essay that was shortlisted from hundreds of entries. I was lucky because I was one of the early birds in the weekly contest, and I participated before the cheats infiltrated it. Another thing that helped was that most of those who manipulate votes aren’t really good at writing essays! Even at that I lost at my first attempt and was only fortunate at the third attempt. Canvassing for votes was hell, I was contacting all my phone contacts who I knew were on Facebook, and telling them to tell their friends while I did the same on Facebook, Twitter, BBM, and whatsapp. I also enlisted my brother to help get his classmates and contacts to vote.
I won the iPad and plaque, and also free air tickets to and from Nigeria’s capital (my first travel by air), staying in a nice hotel. I also got the chance to travel in a Presidential jet on my return journey with the SGF. I also earned some respect from the ‘Cabals’ that had been dominating winnings in the cyberspace.
You appeared on the Nigerian ‘Who Wants to Be a Millionaire’ in 2009 – tell us about the experience!
Appearing on WWTBAM was my first hugely memorable experience in competitions, especially as it is a televised show. From the the first time I watched the show in 2004 in its first season on Nigerian TV I dreamed about being on the show one day to face the host, put my general knowledge to test and do well. However, appearing on the show is not just down to one’s general knowledge ability, it also involves dialling or texting their short code to answer general knowledge questions for a fee, and if you are lucky to be randomly selected among millions of entries you would be contacted and asked a qualifying question. If you get that correct, you might be invited to contest with other entrants on the show at the fastest finger stage to eventually qualify for the hotseat.
I started dialling the WWTBAM short code in late 2008, in January 2009 I was called from the WWTBAM studio, but I failed the qualifying question. This gave me renewed hope so I dialled again and luckily I was called again and passed the qualifying question and was invited for the show. Since the show was recorded in another city from where I lived, I travelled with my brother and a friend for the recording. We were lodged in a good guest house and our food was catered for. I took along some of my general knowledge journals for revision and I was praying to be lucky with the fastest fingers contest to qualify for the hotseat. On the day of the recording, the contestants were transported to the studio and educated on how to conduct ourselves in the studio. Four shows were recorded that day and mine was the last. Eventually we were called into the studio for recording to start. While waiting for our show to start, we were watching a live feed of the ones being recorded, and I was also interacting with some of the other contestants. Most of them were pretty good, and some had even been up to the studio several times which is possible if a candidate hasn’t played on the hotseat before.
I was a bit nervous when we took our seats for fastest fingers first, we were asked a couple of practice questions in which i didn’t do particularly well, but when the real question was asked, it was about oceans and I was fortunate it was something I had acquired knowledge about because I study maps. I answered it as fast as I could – after the time alloted for the question ran out, the answer was revealed and I was announced as the fastest to get it correct so I went to the hotseat. I’d rehearsed being in the hotseat many times in my imagination, but the feeling was overwhelming. Anyway, I breezed through the questions without using any lifelines until I got to question 11 where I used a lifeline, and I exhausted the remaining two on the next question. After seeing the 13th question (there are 15 questions altogether) ‘Who directed Michael Jackons’s Thriller video?’ and not knowing the answer (John Landis), I walked away with 1 million Naira (the equivalent to £4,000).
It still remains one of my happiest moments. When the show was broadcast a few weeks later on national TV, I was overwhelmed with congratulatory calls and text messages from friends and acquaintances, and I became a mini celebrity for a while!
Have you applied for many other TV gameshows or quizzes?
I haven’t. Most of the TV shows are about singing/music, dancing, and sometimes acting which I am not really good at. Nevertheless, a new gameshow was introduced this month which promises to feature; entertainment, sports, and general knowledge trivia. I would love to participate on the show in the near future.
What type of promotion do you enjoy the most?
My forte is general knowledge quizzes, puzzles, and trivia. I also enter some random draw contests and I have been lucky to win modest prizes in some.
Which websites, forums, magazines or resources do you use for comping?
None in particular but I follow the #CabalBosses (contest aficionados) substantially on Facebook and twitter, their posts/activity usually lead me to where the feast is!
What type of prize promotions are most popular in Nigeria?
The most popular ones are the voting/liking/referral promotions, i guess because most of the brands are seeking huge online following. These promotions usually have the biggest prizes and controversies. I bet you know why!
What is your top comping tip or piece of advice?
Play to your strengths, and be consistent/dedicated.
What would be your dream prize?
Salary for life, a house, or a car.
Thanks so much Ope – and good luck with your comping for 2015!
If you’d like to feature on SuperLucky, send me a message via the Contact page!