Trevor Noah: from funnyman to 'CEO'

By admin
12 August 2010

Trevor Noah could charm the socks off any woman – although only a woman with the patience of a saint would date him. He may be dashing but he’s always late and his attention is never undivided. He can hold at least three conversations at once, thinks nothing of making you wait an hour for an appointment and has been known to miss a function when he has promised he’ll be there.

He gets away with it because he’s cute . . . and talented.

And now the TV presenter and comedian has climbed the corporate ladder all the way to the top. He has been appointed “CEO” of Cell C – although in his case CEO stands not for chief executive officer but for customer experience officer, a position tailor-made for the razor-tongued comedian.

After having slammed Cell C’s service in a skit Trevor now has the job of ensuring its customers’ voices are heard when the network fails them.

“They’re the worst,” he complained. “They don’t even have their own network – they piggy-back on Vodacom. If Vodacom is the ANC, then Cell C is Cope. That’s just disastrous. Cell C drops calls more often than Jacob Zuma drops his underwear!”

A video filmed at the show made its way onto YouTube and a few days later Cell C published an advert in major Sunday newspapers apologising to Trevor. Then a week later the company announced it had appointed him as their new brand ambassador.

But no sooner had the adverts announcing his task hit the media than controversy erupted: was it all a set-up? Trevor and Cell C say of course not but the facts suggest otherwise.

The comedian denies the company staged his tirade and says Cell C contacted him only after hearing of his show.

Yet a search of SA’s internet domain name registry reveals, the website set up for consumers to complain to the new “customer experience officer”, was registered on 23 June - a month before the clip of him ranting about Cell C appeared on YouTube.

Cell C is taking a risk, media analyst Chris Moerdyk says. The campaign relies on the fact Trevor is a brand ambassador on one hand and an angry consumer critical of the company he represents on the other, he says.

“Now we know he’s on Cell C’s payroll he’ll have to continue to criticise them or we won’t trust him. And constant criticism isn’t good for any brand.”

Read the full article in the YOU of 19 August 2010

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