Business owners are used to rolling up their sleeves and getting the job done. Actually, they are used to getting all the jobs done. If there is a gap in the business, be it for human resources, marketing and advertising, production or sales, entrepreneurs are accustomed to saying "the buck stops here".
While this go-getter attitude is admirable, it is not always the best way to grow your business. Recognizing your own limits and finding solutions other than doing it yourself can be a turning point in your company's development. Certainly, you can hire staff to fill your gaps, but there are other possibilities as well. Have you considered a strategic partnership with another company that can help you meet your goals?
Five Reasons You Should Consider Strategic Partnerships
Partnering with the right company can help you attract or capture a larger share of the market, helping you beat the competition. You may be able to get more exposure, offer better products or services, or position your business more strategically. No matter how old your company is, partnerships can jumpstart growth and give you a stronger competitive advantage.
Companies spend much of their time building their audience. Through strong lead-building, advertising and content marketing businesses establish a base list of interested customers. Your business may be able to tap into these contacts through a good partnership. By aligning your company with another that compliments yours, you can immediately reach a targeted list of clients who may be interested in your products and services. With your partner's help in promoting your brand, your audience will trust you and know that you are providing added value to them without your having to do the legwork.
By working with a promotional strategic partner your product will get to the marketplace faster. People will hear about your brand faster and learn about your product faster because you will be working with a company that they are already familiar with. Reaching buyers as quickly as possible increases sales.
You cannot know how to do everything and you should not try. By forming strategic partnerships you can fill any knowledge gaps that your company has quickly and efficiently. For instance, if your company has a great production team but no marketing department, finding a partner with digital skills can help you reach new customers without waiting for staff to gain new credentials. As your partner promotes your product you can continue to focus on what you do best.
New companies often have a hard time gaining traction in the marketplace, especially if there is already a powerhouse company in the way. Partnering your new company with companies like these can leverage the reputation the larger company already has and bring some cachet to your own brand.
Six Ways To Ensure Your Partnership is Successful
The first step is to clarify the goals that you have for the partnership. Are you interested in more clients, new skill sets, or a better reputation? Knowing what you'd like to get out of the relationship is the first step in ensuring that your partnership will be successful.
Once you understand what you want out of the partnership you need to understand what your partner wants too. Common goals are convenient and can make it easy for two companies to feel good about their venture. If your goals are different, be sure you understand how you can meet your partner's goal as well as how they will compliment you. Skipping this step is tempting, especially when you are in a rush to get what you want, or your partner is already in your industry and you think you know their goals. Taking the time to be transparent with one another is the only way to establish parameters for success. Start off on the right foot and your partnership will head in the right direction.
Once the partnership has been established be sure to cultivate positive connections. By connecting socially you can encourage strong collaboration and communication. Taking the time to build friendships also builds trust. Keeping lines of communication open and being sure all parties are included in discussions and decisions allows for a smooth working process, with fewer errors and changes.
Use whatever tools you need to be open and communicative with your partner. This may mean investments in systems, reporting or communication software, whatever can help you connect with your partner. Be sure you have a team in place with members from both organizations that will track goals and successes. This group can help keep projects on track, provide troubleshooting and process management, and represent all key shareholders from both sides to keep everything running smoothly.
By focusing on real data and performance metrics, leadership can have a real understanding of the result of the partnership. Data that tracks timelines, deliverables, sales and other goals can ensure that all parties see positive results and progress toward end goals. Without hard data, either side can fall prey to relying on emotions to gauge the success of the joint venture. But emotions are not an effective way to determine if goals are being met, or if the project is a success. Insist on clear data and metrics to base your decisions on.
Be sure to celebrate success, both for your company and your partner. The clearer it is that you are interested in your partner's success the stronger your relationship will be. Every collaboration should benefit both parties, so be sure your partner is clear that you know and support this fact.
Business partnerships are an incredibly effective and expeditious way to grow your business, increase sales, improve your reputation and fill in any gaps in your company's competencies. For a small business, partnerships are a great way to see tremendous success without having to do all the work yourself.
Publish Date: April 14, 2022 6:59 PM