www.faithsenam.com and www.eaprilpr.com My name is Faith Senam, an Accra-based Fashion PR Specialist, fashion writer and founder of e'april Public Relations. I have a combined experience of 10 years of acquired knowledge and skills from diverse fields of work in the areas of Public Relations and Strategic Communication, Projects and Events Management, Customer Relations and Brands Marketing and Social Media Management. In 2012, I set out to launch my agency, e’april PR with a special interest in PR for fashion, beauty and lifestyle brands. I had just graduated from the university with a BA in Strategic Communications and was confused as to what to do. I was then working as a cashier in a telecommunications company and had sent out several applications hoping to get a PR Job but none was successful. I decided after 3 years to quit and stay home. While home, I decided to start building my online presence and hone my writing skills (which is an essential skill for a PR pro). I created a blog and started writing on how to use PR to build brands for fashion, beauty and lifestyle. A year on, I was offered a job as an Account Manager in one of the leading PR agencies in Ghana to handle PR for a new client who was launching a beauty product. Through that opportunity and many other brands I worked on while working at the agency, I gained my media contacts and built on my experience which enabled me to branch out and go back to my first love, Fashion PR. I landed my first paid job as a Freelancer in May 2015 to handle PR for a fashion designer. Working with that brand for 2 years, I managed to secure placements in top media platforms in Ghana and beyond and then worked with the brand to be recognized in the industry which got them nominated and won some awards within the period. Since then, I have gone on to handle PR for several fashion brands and some beauty and lifestyle brands, managing their communications and online presence. Clients I have handled PR for include, Adubea Jensen, Selinabeb, Ghana Menswear Week (formerly Accra Men’s Fashion Week), Horseman Shoes, Pure Persona by Nana, So Aesthetics, Nadrey Laurent, Evangel Magazine amongst several other brands she has consulted for on project basis. I enjoy connecting brands to the right audiences and that has been my journey so far.
What were the biggest initial hurdles and how did you overcome them? While starting I noticed the lack of role models in PR (especially females) in Ghana who I could look up to or learn from and share ideas with them. I depended a lot on online resources and followed other PR professionals in other countries who were doing amazing work. Later, I thought about starting a network of PR women who can share, mentor and inspire other young women like myself. This led me to establish Women in PR Ghana, a not-for-profit organization that seeks to create opportunities for women studying and practicing PR to connect and advance in their career. Did you ever deal with contention from your family and friends concerning your pursuits? How did you handle it? What would you do differently in hindsight? Yes! When I started fashion PR as a Solopreneur, many people including family and friends did not know what it was about. They would send me job adverts to apply and would tell me to at least look for a job and do this on a part time basis. And mostly when I was working from home, they never believed I could make a living off it but years down the line, after receiving recognition for my efforts and contributions to the PR profession here in Ghana, they are finally appreciating the work I do. I guess the lesson here is to prove to people what you can do rather than to argue with them. I nurtured this and I am proud of how far I have come. What would you say was the single most influential factor in your success? My purpose: I believe that I have a purpose to make an impact and this drives me each day. I remind myself anytime I feel like giving up and when I think about how far I have come, I take a break and bounce back more determined. What do you know today that you wish you would have known when you first got started? I would have probably taken more opportunity to work and gain more experiences before getting started. Since fashion PR is a relatively new space in Ghana, I did so many try and errors to get to where I am now. What advice would you give to an upcoming youth or talents locally and internationally? I would tell them to believe in whatever they choose to do. And that anything they want to become is possible but they need to be determined to achieve that because in many situations, people will not understand it and will try to talk them out of it but once they are determined, they can surmount all hurdles and be successful.