joint venture marketing
The old business strategy, “If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em,” can be so true for a joint venture. Business owners want to succeed in keeping their business sustainable and growing. And usually the biggest obstacle for a business is competition. But do you view your competition as that which must be conquered, or have you really taken a look at your competition and analyzed how you can work to increase profits together?
The psychology of competition has always been that of beating the other companies. There must be a clear winner and a loser. However, this does not have to be the case in business. It is quite possible that you and your competition can put differences aside and work towards mutually beneficial goals. But in order to make that work, you need to remove the face of “the other guy” and become an informed and strategic-thinking entrepreneur.
Analyze the Competition
Before you can figure out how to work together, you need to know the similarities and differences between you and your competition. First, take a good, long look at your competition. Gather and write down information about their business process. Where do their customers come from? How is their product packaged? Where do you see their advertisements?
Learn everything you can about how your competition works. Become a “secret shopper” and make a purchase. You can hire someone or get an associate to do this work if your competition knows whom you are. First-hand knowledge of business practices can be some of the best data. How do they treat customers? How fast was their service? What is their décor if they operate in a retail shop or office? Casually ask other customers about their experiences with your competition.
Formulate a Strategy
Once you have gathered as much information as you can about your competition, analyze their strengths and weaknesses. Is their packaging inferior? Do they provide much better customer service than you? Find the points where your competition could help your business, as well as the strengths you possess that can help them.
After you have pinpointed potential areas in which you can combine efforts, formulate a point-by-point presentation that you can use to convince your competition that by working together you can both enjoy increased revenues.
Approach the Competition
This could be the hardest part, especially if you have had an adverse relationship with your competition in the past. But remember the past is history, and you want to look toward the future with high expectations of success. Agree to bury the proverbial hatchet.
Take them out to lunch or invite them over for a formal meeting. Outline for them your strategic plan that shows specifically how you can combine strengths to generate higher revenues. Can you create more attractive packaging? Can you use your cost-cutting method of production with their stellar customer service? Remember to focus on showing them how they can benefit from your strengths.
If your competition has an open mind, then a joint venture can easily be agreed upon if the benefits are there. Remember to maintain a professional and business-like attitude and your competition can see that you’ll be easy to work with. If your competition agrees with your plan, then congratulations! Move forward to setting your plan in action and enjoy the benefits of your joint effort.
christian fea is CEO of Synertegic, Inc. A joint venture marketing firm. He exemplifies how to profit from Joint Venture relationships by creating profit centers with minimal risk and maximum profitability.
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