Have you ever gone to a networking event and learned something new? Had a conversation with a stranger and gained a whole new perspective? Worked with someone who has a completely different style and picked up a new tactic that is now embedded in your workday?
Chances are, at least one of these events has happened to you—and you’re better because of it. While we all strive to wear all the hats and do all the things, we ultimately get by with a little help from our friends. The same is true in business—strategic partnerships help us extend our reach, fill in gaps, strengthen our service offerings, meet our goals, and ultimately, strengthen our brand.
LMD is a brand that welcomes partnerships—all different kinds of partnerships—with open arms. Here’s a list of our seven must-have types when it comes to partnership:
- The Home Team: At a minimum, your employees must be aligned and in sync with your messaging, business goals and priorities in order to advance your brand. Everyone on your team should be able to tell the same narrative and be working toward shared goals.
- The Megaphone: It certainly doesn’t hurt to have someone on your side with the reach and willingness to carry your brand message. Strategic partnerships with influencers are imperative to getting the word out about your brand and the cool things you’re doing. Endorsements from macro-influencers (the Jeff Bezos and Kylie Jenner’s of the world) are fantastic but can be hard to come by. Don’t underestimate the power of micro-influencers—those with a smaller but loyal following.
- The Missing Piece: Even if you’re a “one-stop-shop,” the value of partners comes from the fact that they aren’t involved in your daily operations. As a result, they can add a fresh perspective and greater value to your solutions. These partners may include subcontractors and/or consultants, and subject matter experts.
- The Guru: Learning is a lifelong process and there’s so much you can learn from industry experts, thought leaders, mentors, even competitors. Plus, by partnering with a respected person or organization, some of their shine rubs off on you (which is good for your brand).
- The Apprentice: Consider opportunities to partner with organizations that may be less established or known than your own—one that can learn a few things from you. By building others up you’ll grow your network, have a hand in creating something great, and help your brand grow in the process.
- The “Bet-Ya-Didn’t-Think-Of-Them”: While collaboration within your industry is a no-brainer, building a network of people and organizations that have completely different skillsets can also be eye-opening, in a good way. A fresh pair of eyes offers real benefits in terms of looking at old problems in new ways and developing innovative, comprehensive solutions.
- The Worthy Cause: Donating in-kind services to another organization has multiple benefits. It contributes to the greater good, it’s great for team building, and it can offer a level of creative freedom that you may not be able to enjoy when working on projects for paying clients. And the organization that you’re donating your work to will say great things about you within their network…and they’ll tell two friends…and they’ll tell two friends…
The moral of the story? Don’t go at it alone. Sure, you have a powerhouse team with great skills—but by bringing in some of the partners we’ve mentioned above, you may be pleasantly surprised by the wealth of new ideas and new energy that partnering can offer your team. At LMD, we work with all types of partners to ensure we’re providing the utmost value to our clients. While we think we have a pretty kick-butt team internally, our networking and partnerships efforts with strategic individuals and organizations are vital to our clients’ success—and ours as well.