This month I thought it was important to reflect on partnerships, what makes them strong and the importance of researching your potential partner prior to actually approaching them. In my years of curating stories of African female brands and working to cultivate these brands and start ups , I have learnt a lot about partnerships and which ones are best to cultivate. The best partnerships I have had are the ones that I take time to research and spend a long time actually cultivating the relationship with.
This month we will be sharing tips on partnerships and why they are important. Our first tip for this month is one of the most important, which entails research! A lot of times I get emails, and messages from people who want to become partners on different levels of my work but haven't done enough research about WCA. The first thing I like to know if how did the company find out about WCA. Within the first 5-10 minutes of the conversation I can tell how much research has been done on WCA and if this is a partnership discussion I should entertain.
The same applies to me as well, prior to approaching a partner I do my research online and also if there are any mutual brands that may be connected to the potential partner I ask about my partner brand prior to reaching out to them.
As you consider your next collaboration and partnership, I urge you to do your research, spend time knowing your potential partner, read about them, watch videos, and ask mutual brands who may have worked with them what their experiences have been. If the potential partner has events, attend some of their events and get a sense of the work that they do.
The value of doing this type of research is that research makes you stand out from other brands who may have not done enough research. Research also allows you to know what the key areas of partnership should be with your partner. Once you have done thorough research you can take the next step towards approaching your potential partner. Stay tuned for more tips throughout the month on partnerships.