Who Should You Partner With?

Who Should You Partner With?
Aaron O'Hanlon
Aaron O'Hanlon May 12, 2011

The first step to forming a strategic alliance is to define who your "target market" is. Who in your area has tons of clients that most match the description of your ideal client?

Think about the other businesses your clients patronize – and which ones they don't. For example, a good number of your clients might shop at a nearby golf supply store or moor their boats at local marina.

How about interior decorators, furniture stores, high-end hair stylists, pet salons, dry cleaners, and Realtors, to mention a few? Sit down and write out a list of businesses in your area. Better yet, sit down with your local Yellow Page directory and do this exercise – you'll find dozens and dozens of potential Strategic alliances.

In general, there are different kinds of strategic alliance partners you can choose from, and each of these, of course, requires a different approach. They are:

  • Neighborhood businesses that serve the same type of client
  • Retail merchants
  • Major employers
  • Educational
  • Associations and organizations
  • Events and celebrations
  • Your own employees
  • Your existing clients
  • Business-to-business merchants
  • Non-profit groups

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