If you’re a Marketing Manager or working in Community Engagement, we’re often faced with the challenge of ‘how?’ How do we get the name out? How do we build the audience? How do we get our potential customers to see the brand?
We know the why: because we want to grow our business. We’re also pretty sure of the who, what and when. But once you’ve scheduled in your tweets, written your content calendar and attended a few networking events you start to wonder if there might be more. More routes to market, more potential marketing avenues and most importantly, more potential customers.
When I first joined JournoLink, I was immediately thrown in to building out our partnership strategy with our Founder, Peter Ibbetson. I’ll never forget our first partnership strategy meeting. It was in a Pizza Express, and I left the building with a head full of mush. How were we going to target all the agencies, networks, corporate partners, SME partners...? The list went on.
But now, a year on, we have some great partners, who really champion our mission and are constantly introducing us to great businesses. Here are my top five tips to navigate your partnership strategy.
You should also read JournoLink's best tips and successful stories in our blog The power of the network.
1. Have A Strategy:
The first one probably won’t be right, but by having one you’re forcing yourself to really focus on the how?
2. Don’t Say Yes To Every Partner:
If you don’t think they’ll work for you, you may be right.
3. Give A Partnership Time:
Give people a chance to prove to you why partnering would work. Maybe give them a trial, you never know.
4. Make Sure You’re Tracking Your Partnerships:
Are they bringing you any new business? If not, maybe it’s time for a re-think.
5. Don’t Focus Entirely On New Sales:
Partners can bring you lots of new opportunities, whether that’s for events, focus groups, exposure or others.
Whether you’re a start-up or a larger business with a few staff, I’m sure there are at least a few partners out there that could help you get your message even further. Why not plan out a strategy and present it to your boss? Or maybe you can see a new opportunity for your existing partner strategy. Give it a go! What’s the worst that can happen?
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Written by: Emily Brown, Head of Partnerships
Emily trained as a broadcast journalist and worked as a reporter for The Voice Newspaper, Community Channel and The BBC, before starting her own video production company. She now heads up Journolink’s Marketing and Partnerships, taking a special interest in food and charity projects.