When you’re an expert, you enjoy the benefit of having “higher-level” colleagues. In some cases, these contacts can be nearly as important as your relationships with your customers. We have an instinct to keep our business details private, but maybe it’s time to throw all the industry secrecy out the window, because informal professional partnerships can be invaluable. Here are a few ways teaming up can enhance your business.
Build Your List
Sometimes, to a focused entrepreneur who’s eager to get on with doing the work, “networking” is just too exhausting. But you can’t ignore list-building. Any friendly contact you have with other professionals should be seen as a chance to build your list. Ask before you add someone, but do always ask! Your e-mail list is an indispensable tool when it comes to growing your business. Having other experts on the list of folks who receive your content shares helps keep you at the top of their brain. And hopefully, you get some forwards and shares to their list as well. Studies show a good e-mail campaign has a higher conversion rate than social media, so don’t miss out on a chance to generate a little helpful symbiosis.
Sharing is Free
Establishing yourself as an expert brings the positive attention you want from your target market. But who else might be watching? If you think professionals adjacent to your niche might be taking notice as well, you’re right! And once you’ve made the “expert” impression, you’ll find that, not just users, but also other professionals will want your help. Figure out what you can learn from them, and do the same for yourself! One of my core beliefs is that you should be able to afford the help you need to improve your business. Well, what’s be more affordable than helping someone and having them help you? Sharing your expertise with professional colleagues costs you nothing, and gives you access their know-how in return. This might seem obvious, but I see people pass up the opportunity to collaborate all the time!
A-B-R: Always Be Referring!
If you feed business to an expert in a related niche, chances are they’ll be on the lookout for new business to send you. Reciprocation is the backbone of business and can turn your lean months bountiful. So name-drop your colleagues. Talk them up! Bring them into your meetings if you think they’ll be helpful. Not only are they likely to return the favor, but once a joint relationship is established, you can work together to help mutual customers on a going-forward basis. That elevates your service and provides a more comprehensive benefit to your market. You both come away looking good!
If you’re open to opportunity, opportunity will find you.