The West Africa Competitiveness Programme (WACOMP) -Ghana, a programme funded by the European Union (EU) and implemented by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) through its support to the Global Shea Alliance (GSA) has trained 45 Shea based SMEs on branding and marketing in Accra .
The training was attended by small and medium scale companies producing shea-based cosmetic products including soaps, creams, hair products, and shea butter.
The topics focused on exploring effective digital marketing platforms to identify buyers of shea based products, understanding marketing investments for tomorrow, developing the right marketing mix for shea products and creating a brand positioning to enhance business export competitiveness.
As part of the programme, there was a B2B forum where the SMEs interacted with commercial attaché representing various export markets for shea buyers and retailers from the Ghanaian German Economic Association, Canada Ghana Chamber of Commerce, Sweden Ghana Chamber of Commerce, Ghana-India Trade Advisory Chamber, UK Ghana Chamber of Commerce and African Exporter.com.
The GSA through WACOMP’s Sub -Contracting Matching Scheme is implementing a project which will help increase the quality of products, increase productivity through training, encourage cluster development and upgrade of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) capacities.
The GSA and the WACOMP-Ghana collaboration is providing technical assistance to stakeholders in the Cosmetic and Personal Care Products Value Chain and help improved cosmetics and personal care products of about 50 SMEs increase sales, profits, and jobs.
The Sub-Contracting Matching Scheme is part of WACOMP’s intervention strategy where Associations, Firms and Networks are supported to implement activities that are innovative and complementary to WACOMP’s objectives.
Mr. Aaron Adu, Managing Director of Global Shea Alliance in a welcome address said the training programme was designed to identify different marketing approaches that companies can utilize without necessarily having to hire specialists such as social media experts but leverage online influencers to promote their products.
“Many entrepreneurs don’t have an employee dedicated to marketing but are rather doing it themselves. This training will therefore provide the SMEs with the skills to do it right and also have the opportunity to reach a wider audience through digital marketing”, he said.
Mr. Charles Kwame Sackey, Chief Technical Advisor of WACOMP – Ghana encouraged participants to make use of the skills being impacted through the GSA to be able to also connect to other markets virtually to increase their domestic sales and export.
“It is products that we sell that brings money and not those that are in warehouses’. So WACOMP works with institutions to ensure that Ghanaian products meet various quality requirements and use the appropriate branding and marketing channels to attract the right customers both in local and international markets and on various market shelves in the supermarkets and shops”, he said.