How to build partnerships to grow business

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Two heads are better than one. There's no better way to say this.

If there are 2 people of different skillset working on the same project and complement each other, the resulting outcome would always be greater than what they could have achieved had they worked on it individually.

Historically, big brands such as Tesla Inc, Apple, Disney, etc. all have undergone strategic partnerships at some point of their business life cycle which in-turn took them to the next level.

Let's find how all of us can build partnerships too, to grow our businesses.

Leverage audiences

If you're a blogger, you should look out for potential partners/bloggers who belong to your niche and have a comparatively larger audience than you do.

The best way to leverage their audience is by doing a guest post on their blog.

Guest blogging provides a host of benefits.

Not only does it portray you as an authoritative figure in your niche, but also, exposes you to a completely new set of audience which can build new relationships with thought leaders in the industry.

You can also feature these guest posts on your blog so that your partners too can have an access to your audiences.

Another brilliant way to build partnerships is by co-hosting webinars together.

This could be applicable for businesses of complementary categories. For example a fitness trainer and keto baker co-hosting a webinar on fitness and diet tips!

A similar working methodology can be applied with podcasts as well.

Establish a successful partnership strategy

A study by Harvard Business Review showed that an average professional spent 28% of their time emailing which doesn't necessarily mean that the entire time spent is productive.

To manage your time better you could perhaps hire a virtual assistant who can take care of your email activities.

This can include anything from clearing junk emails to replying to generic queries, and conducting outbound emailing activities.

You can give them a brief on what type of partners/companies you want to get connected with and ask them to create a list of email addresses of all the relevant stakeholders at these potential partner firms.

Once a list of prospective partners is built, the VA can then start approaching them by setting up an outbound email strategy.

You can also ask them to create email templates that can be used to approach individuals from similar walks of work.

Once you receive responses and virtual/physical meetings are set up, a good way to understand what is on the table, and what needs to be brought can be understood by doing a NICE analysis.

You need to be interested in the partner more than being interesting.

What does that mean?

  • Needs: Understand what your potential partner needs
  • Intentions: Understand your partner's intentions and try to understand if it syncs with what you bring to the table
  • Concerns: If the partnership you are trying to execute solves all the concerns that the other person has
  • Execution: How are you going to execute things and put forward a mutual benefit

Once done, it will make the person on the other end feel that their values and goals are being respected which can pave the way to a great and enriching partnership.

If you are just starting out with building partnerships, it is important that you have the right processes in place so that you can automate your marketing. This can help you scale your business up much faster than when you do it manually.

Incentivize to earn

You have got to give something first in order to receive something.

Let's say that you run a digital marketing agency and have a few partners for related activities such as video creation, editing, photography, etc.

A lot of times it so happens that the clients they have generally also look for more services to get executed for their business operations.

What you could perhaps do is, provide an incentive or a referral bonus to your partners.

A referral bonus can range anything between let's say 10-20% of the total order value of the services that they might buy from you.

This referral bonus is motivating enough for them to start vouching for your services and even if the customer isn't looking for digital marketing services, they might just passively put it in their conscience how digital marketing can help their business and who can help them conduct the same.

It could be the other way round too.

You can also come into an agreement wherein if someone is looking for your partner's services, you can refer them to your customers and receive a cut from the entire transaction.

Remember, collaboration is always better than competing with them and it always creates a win-win situation for both parties!

Track your visitors

Let's say you get a tonne of visitors on your website but do not have a way to convert these visitors to become your email subscribers.

In such a scenario, it's going to be extremely difficult for you to conduct deep marketing activities.

By deep marketing, we mean profiling your visitors by age, demography, industries, and other important parameters relevant to you and then accordingly curating content for them. There are plenty of tools that deploy IP and cookies tracking to get a better understanding of who your visitors are.

If you have an email list in place and have the right profiling done, you can specifically target the people you want as your partners.

Let's say you're into furniture sales.

With correct profiling, you would be easily able to identify people from your audiences that are into plumbing, interior design, painting, and other relevant fields.

Post that, it would become really simple for you to reach out to them via email or other outbound activities and create suitable partnership offers for them.

That way not just are you saving your valuable time by targeting the correct set of audiences, but also, increasing the chances to grow and help others grow in their business!

Growth mindset

Not every partnership that you intend to form would work out the way you desired to.

You need to select your partners carefully, understand each other's strengths and weaknesses, and see how one's strength can cover the other's weaknesses and vice-versa.

With opportunities in abundance out there, one failure should not let you down.

You must have the growth mindset which always makes you look for opportunities that help you and others associated with you grow collectively.

Only then, success shall come your way.