When I say the words “strategic partnership”, what comes to your mind? Is it high level companies joining forces and take over a market? What about collaboration? Does that spark some interest? What if I told you that YOU could create strategic partnerships with other business owners? Did you know that forming strategic partnerships can help YOU take YOUR BUSINESS to the NEXT LEVEL?
It’s true. But before we get into the nuts and bolts of it all, let’s cover some basics. What is a strategic partnership? A strategic partnership is a relationship between one or more business owners that MUTUALLY BENEFITS both parties. It’s a PARTNERSHIP for a reason. It’s not a one way street where one person gets more benefit than the other. When you are looking to form these strategic partnerships you need to make sure you understand what you both bring to the table.
“Just one great partnership with the right person can have an incredible impact on your business success.”- Janine Ogg & Jo Foster
Think about it this way…
When you form a strategic partnership it’s basically PEOPLE creating PARTNERSHIPS to increase PROFITS. There are a lot of benefits to collaborating with other business owners. These include:
- Similar target market
- This will help you to expand your geographic reach. A good example of this would be partnering with someone in another country or in another state. It allows you to connect with others you may not have ever reached through your network and marketing efforts.
- Competitive advantage
- This gives you a competitive advantage with your clients because even if you can’t help them…you “know a guy” who can! How often have your clients asked you for a referral?
- This also helps to build trust with your clients because they see you as an authority because of these partnerships. They know, like and trust YOU – so it is natural for them to reach to you for a referral.
- Shared resources
- We are all on information overload. You don’t have to be everything to everyone. By having strategic partnerships, you can share knowledge, “been there, done that”, learn from their experience, divide and conquer when learning something new. All of the above saving you time and money while increasing your knowledge.
However, even with all the benefits strategic partnerships bring, there are a few things that you need to consider!
One of the first things you need to consider is commissions/money exchanging.
The new term for this is affiliate marketing. It’s a well known term in today’s online world, but this practice used to just be called commissions or referral bonuses. Although I see the benefits of such bonuses, I believe you should refer someone (a strategic partner) because you truly believe in them and their capabilities and not because of the potential for monetary compensation. However, it is mutually beneficial for you both, this can be a nice added bonus.
The next thing you need to consider is making sure this partnership is EQUALLY BENEFICIAL!
I covered this earlier, but it’s worth repeating. A strategic partnership shouldn’t be a one sided affair where you do all the giving and none of the receiving. If a partnership doesn’t benefit BOTH parties then it’s NOT a strategic partnership. You need to take into consideration your target audiences, price points of both of your services etc. Make sure that you both serve your audience in a similar way but in different areas of business.
Another huge consideration is legally binding contracts.
There are certain contracts out there that you need to have in place to protect you in a strategic partnership. These contracts such as an NDA are in place to protect you and your intellectual property.
Lastly, you need to “stay in your lane”.
You don’t need to be everything to everyone. Make sure that everyone understands their roles in the partnership and stays in their lane! When everyone stays in their zone of excellence, you become a powerhouse to your potential clients. Who wouldn’t want to do business with a one stop shop?
Now that you know what a strategic partnership is…who is someone you could form a strategic partnership with? Is there a type of business that would help your business go to the next level? Always have your eyes open to meet people who may be able to partner with you to help you take your business to the next level. I love to be a connector of people. If there is someone you would love an introduction to as a potential partner, email me and let me know!
For even more info on forming and creating strategic partners check out the FREE training in my FB Group (and also to connect with some really killer entrepreneurs, who could just be your next strategic partner!).