Stronger Together – The Power Of Collaborations
Owning a small business is tough but when you have the support of fellow creatives and local brands, success is in the making. Jolene Ogle chats to Maria Baron of Black and White Projects about the power of collaboration.
In the words of Henry Ford; “coming together is a beginning, keeping together is a process and working together is success.” Nothing could be truer for a team of creatives who recently came together to create boundless opportunities for each other, all led by the vision of Maria Baron.
A stylist, interior designer and property investor, Maria is on a mission to breed success. With more than 10 years of renovation and investing experience, Maria and her husband know what they are doing. When they laid eyes on a cool beach shack perched high on a hill in Coolum, they knew this was a chance to create a luxurious coastal abode.
Not to be confused with “flippers”, these guys are professionals keen to create showcase renovations with local businesses.
“I strongly believe in collaborating,” Maria says. “When we work in collaboration, we can all benefit. It is such a competitive world out there and there are so many small businesses trying to get exposure.”
Maria decided to team up with local businesses such as Loft Furniture, Woven Husk, Saya, Cast in Concrete Design and many more to style their renovation, Salty Views.
The idea was to use furniture and styling pieces in exchange for quality imagery captured by renowned photographer Louise Roche from Villa Styling. A photoshoot like this is often an expensive outlay for small businesses.
“For us, the collaboration was all about lifting the project to a premium level. By myself, I wouldn’t have been able to be as good as when working with others,” Maria says. “It can be challenging. It takes months to put it together, but it is worth it. The end result is such a beautiful outcome.”
Sam Smith of Loft Furniture said the key to a successful collaboration was ensuring everyone benefitted from the project.
“I’ve done a lot of collaborations throughout the years, but Salty Views was the most beneficial,” Sam says. “It can be expensive to set up a photoshoot, especially one like this. In this collaboration, I gained so much and it worked out so well.
“The imagery was amazing and then we ran a competition with the other collaborators and that allowed us to share and grow our audiences on social media.
“As a result, more people came to our warehouse and we gained orders.”
Since the collaboration, Sam sold Loft Furniture to Casa Noosa and is now the manager of the Noosa Junction showroom. For Sam, the benefits of the collaboration extend beyond the photoshoot.
“The businesses involved have continued working together and refer clients to each other,” she says. “it’s important to support other local businesses to keep dollars being spent locally,” she said.
For Maria, the outcome was an impeccably-styled home that was soon snapped up by lucky new owners while local businesses now have stunning product photography and a host of new customers and supporters.