Is autumn your slow season? For many Canadian retailers, the cooling of the temperatures often coincides with the cooling down of sales. If you find that sales fall when fall starts, this might be the right time to start a new business partnership. The whole “scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours” philosophy has worked for companies all over the world for decades. Might it be your turn to give it a shot?
Locate the right fit.
The first step to a successful partnership is finding a like-minded business owner who doesn’t operate a company in your industry. After all, competitors don’t tend to join forces unless one of the two is going out of business. You may want to consider a brand that has a strong online presence. On Entrepreneur.com, the Founder and CEO of Porch.com, Matt Ehrlichman notes that that there are plenty of examples of retailers working with digital platforms to extend their reach.
He highlights the recent partnership between Macy’s and Buzzfeed’s Goodful. “Macy’s will offer 100 Goodful products (such as appliances, kitchenware and other home products) in its stores and online, providing the brand with a much larger distribution platform and increasing brand awareness,” explains Ehrlichman, “Meanwhile, the partnership gives Macy’s access to the 45.2 million consumers Goodful reaches every month — many of whom are millennials.”
Nurture the relationship.
Remember that forming a new business partnership is no different that starting any new relationship. It must be nurtured in order for it to last for the long haul. In addition to setting expectations between your business and its newfound partner, be sure to put efforts into growing your personal connection. As Greenleaf Book Group CEO, Tanya Hall details on Inc.com, it is important to mitigate disappointment or impatience during the ramp-up period.
“Consider the importance of not competing with your strategic partner in cases where your business offerings do overlap,” she advises, “It’s best to develop a process to flag clients who were referred by strategic partners so they can be managed appropriately. Taking business away from the person who sent you a prospect is a surefire way to quickly kill a partnership.”
Keep your options open.
It isn’t mandatory to make your business partnership exclusive. It can certainly be beneficial to add a number of business partners to the fold. Doing so can only help grow your reach in different markets. Not to mention, as Hall points out, avoiding exclusivity protects your ability to end any partnership if you find that the relationship isn’t working.
“Some partners will see the benefit you bring to their customers and push for an exclusive deal to make the value proposition even sweeter on their side,” she writes, “That’s a win for them, but not for you. In most cases, it makes more sense to stand your ground and decline exclusivity.”
Are you thinking about partnering up with another business this fall, but are worried about the costs that may be involved? Contact Synergy Merchants and be sure to ask us how our unique merchant cash advance program can help you. Call us at 1-877-718-2026 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also apply online for a free, no obligation quote!