Power Partners, You Know You Need them, but Do You Really Have Time to Build Alliances Properly?

It’s official. The public’s buying behavior has changed. Every major marketing firm on Madison Avenue now has an Internet Marketing division; and many experts believe online marketing is even more powerful than TV, Radio and Print marketing is for many products and services. Everyone from grandpa to toddlers is becoming more tech savvy; and consumers are making buying decisions based on social and environmental responsibility.

What do You Do?

Well, totally changing your business model is out of the question for a multitude of reasons. However, a new joint venture can quickly gain you access to new customers, more capital, more technological resources; and give you more credibility in the modern marketplace. Continue reading

Growing Your Business with Joint Ventures

Whether you are starting out as an entrepreneur or have a successful business already, you know the importance of you clientele and growing your customer base. Sometimes it can be difficult to design and market new products and ideas on your own, especially if you are just starting out. One solution to this dilemma is Joint Ventures (JV). A joint venture is a business agreement between two parties with the intent to achieve a common goal.

Here are some great advantages Continue reading

The Advantages of Value Added Resellers (VAR)

In the world of business there are many benefits to producing products as Value Added Resellers (VAR).  In the computer industry, a company that makes the hardware can increase the value of their product, if they offer a specific type of software as standard on the computers they make.  The computer maker and the software creator work together to provide a new and more valuable product.

The advantages to the partners involved as VAR are numerous.  Continue reading

Should Your Next Business Partner Be Your Rival?

Although many businesses focus on outperforming competitors by taking advantage of their competitive advantages, many would actually benefit by forming a strategic alliance and turning their competitor into their business partner. While it may not be the most conventional approach, businesses have figured out that in some situations it’s better to focus on growing the entire market, rather than fight for the largest market share of a small market.

A recent Harvard Business Review article discusses why this strategy has emerged Continue reading

Goes Together Like Peas and Carrots

There are many things that go together so well that many people think of them that way. Such as peanut butter and jelly, peas and carrots, salt and pepper, or spaghetti and meatballs. Value Added Resellers (VAR) can take your company to the next level by creating a partnership that fits together just like those famous pairs. By pairing your products with products from another company, you enter into a win/win situation. Both companies are able to increase sales by offering an improved product, as well as accessing a customer base from each company. Continue reading

Preserving Trust in Strategic Alliances with Alliance Management

The role of an alliance manager in a strategic alliance is important during its formation because of the complexity of the agreements made. Then it becomes increasingly important later in the strategic alliance after it starts to lose its shine. It’s crucial to provide as much stability as possible, starting with keeping the same personnel throughout its duration. It is particularly difficult to maintain a high level of trust in the business relationship, and therefore, the role of the alliance manager is to sustain the level of trust by providing stability for all parties involved.

Because of the initial complexity when forming a strategic alliance, Continue reading

Assigning Responsibilities between Business Partners

There are many factors that demand attention when considering a business partner, but one of the most consistent pressing concerns is the delegation of work and responsibility, or more simply, “who’s going to do what?” Another company may seem like a good candidate for a business partner in theory, but in reality, the delegation of work may make the business partnership undesirable.

Because of the internal strife that may result from Continue reading

Alliance Performance Coaching: CEO Partnership Support

We all have a basic understanding of these three words.
Performance is the presentation of work, generally applied to an expected level of success. Coaching is mentoring and/or apprenticeship by instruction, encouragement and example. Put this all together for the corporate world and you have the following definition: The mentoring of executive leadership in forming strategic partnerships between mutually motivated companies to effectively raise profits and lower losses for each partner.

At a time when “coaching” is the go-to word for any form of guidance and “expert” advice, from Little League to self-help gurus, it’s important to Continue reading

Power Partners Create a Foundation for Businesses

Keeping a business growing requires thinking about unconventional solutions. Sometimes when seeking a solution, it takes an angle from the other side to give a clearer light on the problem. Being power partners with another business is a great strategy to give businesses a new look at common problems.

Power partners are a great way to secure a consistent revenue flow to insure continued success. Continue reading

3 Steps to Find Alliance Partners For A Competitive Advantage

As a business owner, you have probably spent a lot of money in marketing campaigns to grow your brand and your business. Do you have the feeling that there is just something missing that is preventing you from getting the exposure you need and the competitive advantage you deserve? Have you ever considered seeking another business to form a partnership?

The key is to find another business that does things you cannot do to combine your strengths to create something very unique and valuable. Let’s look at some important 3 considerations in selecting business partners to give a competitive advantage over time:

Continue reading

Alliance Management Requires Performance Management

The purpose of a business alliance is to bring two or more companies together to achieve defined strategic goals. The benefit is to reduce risk, increase rewards, and leverage resources. But how do you know if you’re successful? Alliance management requires you to assess performance. 

Over ten years ago, McKinsey & Company reviewed the financial and strategic outcomes of hundreds of business alliances. Their assessment was that the overall success rate was slightly higher than 50 percent. Who knew? Not the executives, according to the study.

To make sure this doesn’t happen to your business alliances Continue reading

Business Alliances Provide Stability with Reduced Risk

A business alliance is a tool used by businesses to stabilize a market so that each company benefits. There are several types of business alliances with each specialized to effect certain conditions for different scenarios. A business should consider the needs before entering an alliance so that the correct type can be addressed for the best and most beneficial results.

The types of alliances include: Continue reading

Famous Strategic Alliances that Paid Off and Changed the World

Strategic alliances are an increasingly common sight in the modern business landscape. A study by Booze-Allen & Hamilton showed 20,000 new alliances formed between 1987 and 1992. One reason for this is the need for brand recognition in a crowded global market and because there have been many success stories of strategic alliances that have helped companies take off. Academics talk of the effectiveness of alliances in terms of game theory, these real life examples are a testament to the success of such a bold business move.

Starbucks and Barnes & Noble

The coffee house and the bookstore. Continue reading

Why Creating Strategic Alliances Helps your Business Grow

Reaching out to like-minded individuals is one aspect of creating new business and it the same effect that happens when reaching out to like-minded businesses or competitors of the same or different genre. Specifically speaking building Strategic Alliances is networking with companies and or vendors that deal within the same area of business. For instance, a local business needs to increase sales. One way they can accomplish this is to find another local business that caters to a similar demographic and build a working relationship that benefits both companies by increasing the audience of both through joint advertising. Continue reading

A Strategic Alliance is NOT a Joint Venture

In a 2010 Inc. post, “How to Build Business Alliances,” I was surprised to read the very first line:

The basic logic of the strategic alliance – a joint venture between two companies – is often irresistible: It’s difficult to break into new markets, and a partnership can bring instant access to new customers. 

What? A strategic alliance is not a joint venture. Yes, a joint venture is technically a strategic alliance. However, the reverse is not true.

Specifically, a joint venture occurs when two companies invest finances to create a third, jointly owned company. Continue reading

Sales Strategies Heading into 2013

Sometimes it’s difficult not to think of those who work in sales as anything more than the slick late night used car sales people from days gone by. However, much has changed over the last 30 years, especially when it comes to sales strategies.

Heading into 2013 it’s critical for your sales team to understand what factors Continue reading

Several Reasons Why You Need Business Alliances

As a business owner, you should always be looking for a way to increase your bottom line. There are different strategies claiming they can help you increase your business, but one that is often overlooked is forming business alliances. This term might be complete Greek to you, so here’s a quick breakdown of what it is. Continue reading

Successful Entrepreneurs Become Successful Business Partners

There’s an interesting story about the partnering of the ice cream giant, Baskin-Robbins.

According to a post in Entrepreneur, Burton Baskin and Irvine Robbins each began their ice cream stores as separate companies at the advice of Robbins’ father. Dad thought that the men would take too much time making compromises and “kill the product’s potential.”

So only after each had launched successful separate businesses did they subsequently become business partnersContinue reading

Alliance Performance Coaching: Better Process Makes Better Practice

There’s an interesting video on YouTube featuring former Google CEO Eric Schmidt. In it Schmidt explains the benefits of having a coach. He tells the story of his early years as CEO when a board member suggested that he find one. Though Schmidt felt there was nothing wrong – he was the CEO, after all – he took the board member’s advice and began to work with a coach. As Schmidt explains in the video, a coach helps give perspective to things we are unable to see ourselves.

The same is true with alliances.  Continue reading

Strategic Alliances: Secrets from Fortune 500 for any businesses

You scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours. When you form a strategic alliance with another company, you get the benefits of leveraging an expertise, product, service or asset that isn’t even yours. Yet, they call on the same customers you do.

Big businesses have been reaping the rewards of these relationships for years. Continue reading