Partnerships & Strategic Alliances

By: Lisa Marie Koebcke

One way to expand your business network is to develop partnerships or strategic alliances with companies that you nurture a relationship with over time. Many businesses do this without realizing, but the power behind strategic partnerships is being aware and more importantly – being “strategic”. ultimately, it is your internal team that is vital to the day to day operations within your organization; however, if you cultivate the right partnerships, there will be a huge payoff for you and your company.

So how do you choose the right partnerships?

Strategic partnerships do not always have to align with your industry, but they should align with your values.

Great relationships to nurture are those who offer business services that either compliment or supplement yours.

For example, a complimentary relationship would be one that is in your industry and could be sent work that is outside of your scope. For example, if you are an integrator that specializes in custom high-end integrations, you would want to build a relationship with another integrator who specializes in let’s say low-end or mid-range jobs that fall outside of your scope of work. Instead of trying to “do it all”, you offer those companies referrals. In turn, when a job comes along outside of their scope, you will be the first one they call.

A partnership that supplements your company would be with vendors you commonly utilize to support your business for tasks like graphic design, website builds, accounting or more. If you build a strong partnership with these vendors by respecting their time, services, and pricing – they will develop a respect for you that can also lead to referrals.

What are some other benefits of partnerships?

Fresh Ideas: You may think that you know the best way or the latest way to staying relevant – and you very well might. Having partnerships, you can rely on and trust offers perspective into how others inside or outside of your industry are running their marketing, billing, account management or more. Learning from each other will aide in the progression of your mutual success.

Enjoyable Conversation: Working with vendors or companies routinely allows for established relationships to be built. This will ultimately lead to a group of people that are an extension of your company that you actually enjoy working with on a regular basis.

Competitive Advantage: Many companies will offer competitive pricing to partners who have been a resource of theirs over a consistent period of time.

Referrals: We mentioned it earlier, but one of the best ways to generate new business is through old-fashioned word-of-mouth. By building solid relationships, your brand will get out into the marketplace by just being honorable in the relationship you have nurtured.

Do you have a list of companies you have identified that are complimentary to your business? How about a list of companies that are supplemental? Tell us about it on Facebook or Twitter.

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