How To Build Strategic Business Partnerships

Today we will be focusing on how to attract Small Business Owners or, as I like to call them, Professional Strategic Business Partners into your business. This is one of my favorite subjects. It is important to remember that business is more than just sales, it is a relationship. It is the bond that we build with other people. Creating strategic partnerships with other business professionals will have a major impact on your business and take it to the next level. The great thing about the resources we have today is that we can not only build relationships with people locally, but we can also reach people anywhere in the world. So, let’s start with having the basics for your business in place before we talk more about working with other small business owners.

Branding Your Business By Creating An Online Presence

Creating a consistent brand is important for any business. When you meet with another business professional to discuss your business, what is the first thing you think will happen after you leave? How will they learn more about you and verify that you are a trusted professional that they want to work with? The first thing they are going to do is Google you. If you went online right now and searched your name or your business name, what are the things that are going to pop up? Here are just a couple of things that every business owner should have set up so their business has an online presence, especially if you do not already have a website for your business.

A professional LinkedIn page, business Facebook page, Google business account, etc.

These are all free options and can be implemented quickly and easily. This will be one of the first things that shows up when people Google your name or your business name. It helps you have all your business information listed in one place – it is like your virtual business card. Be sure to include your name and your company name, a little bit of information about yourself, information about your business, and your business history. Do not forget to stay consistent with your branding. Connecting with other business owners online is key to building your business so you want to make sure your business has an online presence.

The moment you start talking about your business with someone, they are going to look for you online, so you just need to know what kind of information is already there and make sure that you are happy with the results. So now that you have set up your online presence, let’s talk about why you might want to consider working with other small business owners in the first place.

Why You Should Work With Other Small Business Owners

They already understand what it takes to be a business owner

Successful business owners know the hard work it takes to grow a business. They already have a customer base and a system in place to sell to those customers. When you start having a conversation with them, you can skip the small fundamental details about running a business and go right to discussing how your businesses can work together.

You already have a connection with them

As business owners, you both speak the same business language and you both face the same business challenges. Common experiences are the perfect place to build your friendship and potential partnership, and when you meet another business owner, you already know you can connect with them on that level.

Now that you are starting to see the potential in partnering with other small business owners, let’s talk about some of the places you might be able to organically meet some of them.

Where To Meet Other Small Business Owners

Community networking events

There will always be several great opportunities for you to network in your community. Business owners who attend these events are already working to grow their business and will be more open to building a professional relationship with you. Remember to always be yourself and ask great questions to keep the conversation flowing. A great way to find out about other events is to ask the people you meet what similar events they attend, and before you leave, you will have a calendar full of future events to attend.

Local classes or events

When looking for local classes or events to attend, think of who could help you with a little bit of advice, a workshop you could go to, or a meeting of like-minded individuals. The main thing is to get another opportunity to interact with local people in your community, and a more relaxed environment can help you foster a natural connection with someone. A great book about the benefits of attending social-based events is The Ruthless Elimination of Hurry. It highlights how the best currency in business is the connection you can have with friends who also happen to own a business. This is not only great for your business, but also helps provide a healthy balance in your personal life.

So now that we know the benefit of partnering with other small business owners and some of the places we can meet them, let’s talk about a few of the criteria for the businesses we might want to partner with.

What Kind Of Business You Should You Look To Partner With

High-rated businesses with a good reputation

Do not forget this partnership will be a two-way street and you do not just want to partner with anyone. Be strategic with the type of businesses you are aligning your business with. You do not want to waste your time or theirs if it is not the right fit. They will be representing you and your business just as much as you are representing them. Make sure you do your research on them before approaching them about working together and be sure they are a good fit for your needs. You want to learn how to qualify and disqualify your prospective partners.

Local small businesses

You want to find a business that everyone in town already knows. They already have an established brand and reputation. It will be the best partnership when the owner is the face of the business and the best salesperson there just like you are.

Industries that synergistically already align with you and your business

It will be easier for you to figure out a way to add value for small businesses that are already established in the same general field of business as you are. It will also be easier for you to build a genuine connection and work with someone who has the same interests as you do.

And finally, let’s talk about some of the ways we can put our best foot forward once we have chosen our potential strategic business partner so that we make the best first impression when we meet with them to discuss working together.

How To Attract Strategic Business Partners

Get to know them on a personal level first

It is best to start building a personal connection with someone before you try to start building a professional relationship with them. Once you have met once or twice, you will be able to communicate with them more effectively because you know them better.

Show them the value potential of the partnership

Make sure you have your presentation ready and you are prepared to show them how partnering with you and your business can help them make extra income and what your products will offer to their clients.

Meet them where they are

Try to determine the best way to start working together with the least amount of work for them. You do not want to overwhelm them in the beginning with too much information. Determine how you can incorporate your products into their business seamlessly and make sure you clearly demonstrate that to them that in your presentation.

Be prepared for possible objections

Be sure to think about potential partnership objections you may face before you meet with your potential partner. For example, we already know that all business owners are busy people and could immediately want to reject the idea of partnering because they do not want to add anything more to their workload, so you will want to make sure you know how you will be able to easily incorporate your business into theirs without creating another job for them.

If you are trying to grow your business and really take it to the next level, start branding your business locally and building strategic business partnerships. A great book for more advice on this topic is Give and Take by Adam Grant. It summarizes the best philosophy for building a business, especially with a local presence.

For More On Attracting Strategic Business Partners, check out the mastermind.

*Disclosure: I only recommend products I have used myself and all opinions expressed here are my own. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases at no additional cost to you.

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