Partnerships can be a powerful tool for growing your business. A partnership can give your business an extra boost. You will get new ideas, new audiences, and possibly a new product, depending on which type of partnership you choose.
There are a few right and wrong ways to partner with a small business. These are the top mistakes entrepreneurs make when searching for partners. These are the most common mistakes entrepreneurs make when looking for partners. Learn how to avoid them, and you can take advantage of this great opportunity to partner with others.
1. Consider your needs first.
Entrepreneurs tend to focus on what they want rather than what they can provide for their partners. Potential partners don’t want to be sold. They want value. Be clear with your potential partners before you approach them.
Are you an established expert? Are you a member of a reliable list? Do you have the ability to introduce them to new audiences? Are you an expert in an area they don’t have? What gap do they have that you could fill?
You want to make the relationship work for both of you. You should not even consider contacting potential partners until you are able to clearly and concisely communicate your value.
2. Consider your coworkers as rivals.
If you view other businesses as competitors, you won’t be able to build the relationships that you want. Instead, see other business owners as collaborators and partners in serving your audience.
You should be focusing on what makes you different from other businesses in the niche. Look for partners who can serve your audience in a unique way when you are looking for partners. These businesses don’t compete with one another. What does your work add to theirs and vice versa?
By joining forces to offer more value to your customers, you create more opportunities for your businesses as well as better service to your clients. It’s a win for all.
3. Before you meet with prospects, make a pitch.
It is rare to pitch someone cold. Establish a relationship with them socially. People respond better to people they know. Begin by connecting via social media or getting a recommendation from a friend. Spend some time getting to understand them and what their needs are. Don’t expect anything in return for your help, but be gracious and offer your support for small things. You will be more open to a partnership offer if you are on the radar of potential partners.
4. Your partner should do the heavy lifting.
You can plan ahead and pull your weight. This is a partnership. You’re not employing an employee. Each person will have his own goals and needs. It is essential to agree on the division of labor. Partnerships that have been successful have created agreements outlining roles, responsibilities, and how the money will be divided. As you would with clients, aim to exceed your client’s expectations.
5. After the first collaboration, disappearance.
Do not lose the ball. Many people have great ideas, brainstorming sessions, and start conversations but fail to follow through. It’s a waste of time if you don’t take action on your ideas and move the partnership along. While ideas are great, step is what will get you to your goals. You must keep your promises and do what you promised. This will build trust and open up the doors to more opportunities down the road.
Strategically choosing your partner is a powerful way to quickly build your business. Don’t let this stop you from getting started. Instead of pitching cold, build the skills you need.
Keep your eyes open for opportunities. Do not exclude your “competitors.” Respect your promises. You’ll be able to create a more profitable, successful, and fulfilling business than you ever dreamed.
Sydni, a tech-savvy coach known as “The Smart Simple Market Coach,” uses a results-oriented, “how-to” approach to implement simple strategies that allow service professionals to create profitable businesses where they can live the life they want.