Collaboration is a great way to build relationships in your local marketplace. Not sure where to get started? Here are some ideas on how to work with other local businesses so you can drive attention and awareness about why consumers should shop local while attracting customers to your business.
One of the first questions you may ask is, what other businesses should I be collaborating with? Here are some ideas.
Find People You Enjoy Working With
The best place to look when collaborating with local business owners is your own personal and professional network. Which business owners do you genuinely enjoy working with? Where do you shop when you support other local businesses? Which other local business owners buy from you? This is a great place to start! Existing relationships can easily form into natural collaborations, from co-marketing to hosting community events.
Look Nearby and Think Outside the Box
When it comes to collaborating with other businesses, it’s a good idea to start with the ones that complement your own. These partnerships keep the customers first. What other types of products or services complement what you offer? For example, a home remodelling service could partner with other home services such as a home cleaning, plumbing, or landscaping service.
Also, consider businesses that are similar to yours but offer different services or focus on a different specialty or demographic. For example, a salon could partner with a nail care centre to offer complementary discounts for services. Think of companies you might refer your customers to for other products or services.
What other local businesses do your customers love? Maybe there’s a bakery down the street from your automotive repair store to partner with. You could offer a sweet treat for customers or a discounted service for customers of the bakery!
These are a few types of partnerships to consider, but don’t be afraid to think outside the box and get creative!
Ways to Collaborate
Once you’ve identified local businesses you want to work with, here are a few ideas on how you can actually collaborate:
- Sponsor & Participate in Local EventsSponsoring local events such as sports teams, community gatherings and non-profit fundraisers is a great way to work with other local businesses and build awareness for your own business.You could work together with a number of different businesses to organise a large local event. This not only helps you drive interest from each business’s customer base, but also allows you to amplify your efforts by adding together budgets, offers, and promotional efforts around one common event. For example, many local districts organise local markets that get a lot of buzz from communities and even media outlets, driving traffic to each business collaborator. Service-based businesses can promote special offers and coupons to customers of these events.
- Cross-Promote with Coupons & OffersAnother way to collaborate with local businesses is to create special offers for the consumers of your collaborators. For example, you and another local business could both offer a special discount for each other’s business. You could also build collaboration into a group customer retention program, offering rewards and offers not only for your own company, but for other local favourites, helping spread the love and customer appreciation to a core group of local businesses.
- Co-Market Your Products and Services OnlineAnother way to collaborate with local businesses is to co-market your products and services online. You could share each other’s logos and swap blog posts or articles. Be sure to request links back to your website from the other local business’s site. This will assist in building awareness to your business and its offerings as well as creating strong backlinks which are effective in boosting your SEO.
Working with other local businesses can be a great way to build awareness for your company, provide interesting and unique offers and events, and ultimately help boost your business.
Have you ever collaborated with another local business? What ideas would you add to this list? Share your thoughts in a comment below!