I love collaborations!

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What could collaborations do for your business?

At a recent Mums Unltd meeting in Harpenden, I was asked to give a presentation on collaborations, and as it was well received I thought I’d share my experiences here.

Now I’m no expert, but I have embraced the idea of collaborations as part of my business since it began in January 2016.

The definition of collaboration:

The dictionary definition is: the action of working with someone to produce something.

But I like to think of it as: You scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours, cooperation and  joint marketing.

Teaming up with another small business is a great way to grow your own business and is a key part of my marketing plan.  Not only can it lead to business growth but it can also be very rewarding and fun!

Why collaborate?

  • To grow your business – increase contacts, awareness of your business, sales/profits and/or add value for your existing clients
  • To inspire you to do something new & be more creative
  • To learn something new  – 2 professionals working together with different skills/strengths leads to greater synergies and impact
  • To save ££ – sharing development ideas, expenses; gain economies of scale; get a bigger bang for your buck!
  • To solve problems – the power of 2/3 heads to create ideas, solutions and actions can be very powerful.

How to collaborate?

I have found collaborations come in many formats:

  • Events – creating events to jointly promote each other’s business
  • Blogging/email marketing/social media sharing & endorsing – sharing your content to different audiences
  • Joint offers/cross marketing – add value to your clients by linking up with another business to generate referrals and rewards
  • Joint campaigns – create joint marketing campaigns for greater impact

…and I am sure there are more!

Top Tips

  • Assess any business collaborations to date:
    • What has worked well/not so well? Why was/wasn’t it a success?
    • What would/could you do differently?Be clear about your objectives?

 

  • What do you want to get out of collaborations: Sales? Awareness? New contacts? Profits? Knowledge? New geographic area? Adding value for your existing clients?

 

  • Define what you can offer your collaborative partner(s)?
    • What will you bring to the party? Clients, products, skills….etc

 

  • Be clear about who is involved, their objectives, roles, expectations etc
    • Who will do what? Is it an equal/fair partnership? Make the time to prepare, plan, implement and review

 

  • Be prepared to try new ideas – step out of your comfort zone!

 

  • Be selective but don’t over-analyse!
    • Don’t say yes to everything! Set yourself some guidelines for what you will/won’t accept

 

  • Don’t be afraid to say no to proposals and don’t be put off when your proposals are rejected

Partner Up…Team Up….Good Luck!

I’m always looking for new opportunities to collaborate with local businesses and would love to hear from you.

Louise Murphy

07889 724299

louisecaptaintortue@gmail.com

www.facebook.com/LouiseMurphyCaptainTortue/