Two heads are better than one
There is perhaps no better way to overcome challenges in business than to relate back to this old saying. When you harness the strengths of others, great things can happen, and collaboration with like-minded partners is an effective strategy for growth. Indeed, for thousands of years, merchants have used it as a principle for doing business. Whether you are pooling technical expertise or sharing industry knowledge, the right partnerships can benefit everyone – the businesses concerned, their employees and their customers.
The benefits are great
Through partnerships, businesses are able to broaden their relevance and open up their markets. Customer experiences improve, and employees can benefit from new opportunities when they are exposed to different perspectives. Developing ties between complementary businesses fosters a broader approach to services and solutions that helps everyone involved to be more successful.
Forge such relationships, and you can expect to benefit in a number of ways.
Improved knowledge – as we all know, knowledge is power. Strategic partnerships present the opportunity to learn and grow from each other’s viewpoint.
A competitive edge – by pooling experiences, you can create more comprehensive and rounded products and services, and reach new markets.
Improved reputation – when you partner with a company that shares similar goals and vision, the influence of each can increase, enhancing your market reputation and strengthening your position.
A growing customer base – by conducting a referral process between partners in associated but non-competitive markets, each can benefit from the others’ customers. For example, a copywriter might join forces with a graphic designer. Each set of unique customers may well have a use for the partner’s services too.
More stability – if you want to remain relevant in the long term, a partnership can help address your weaknesses and enhance your strengths, through access to more knowledge, innovation and expertise.
If you are contemplating using partnerships strategically, there are a few things to think about to maximise the chance of success.
Identify the opportunity – look at your own products or services and see where there is an opportunity to offer more. Identify where there are areas for improvement, and think about whether partnering with another organisation deliver that improvement.
Have a shared purpose – the most successful partnerships have a shared purpose – whether that’s to help businesses with an e-commerce strategy, or as we have here at Remus, the desire to offer a whole range of solutions to the recruitment sector.
Use each other’s strengths – when each partner has a unique but complementary strength, the sum of the shared efforts become even greater. At Remus, we have a strength in delivering reward solutions, and it marries perfectly with our partners’ strengths in building relationships with contractors and temporary workers. Together we can offer a whole package that benefits everyone concerned.
Informal partnerships are useful too
Of course, not all successful partnerships need to be formal, long-term arrangements. Informal agreements can also increase credibility for both parties. If you are new to the idea of partnerships, start simple with one or two companies you trust. Actions such promoting each other in client pitches, sharing each other’s content on LinkedIn, guest blogging for each other, or having a partner page on your website are all great ways to start that anybody can do quite easily.
Have you found benefits in developing partnerships? Do let us know.