Are you crazy? Do you really do business with your competitors?
Isn’t doing business with your competitors crazy?
However, did you know that one of the quickest ways of attracting new clients to your business is to use other business’ databases?
And that even includes using your direct competitors.
Now I am not suggesting in the slightest that you are to break in to their offices overnight and steal their client information! But what I am suggesting is that you collaborate and look at what joint ventures you can create.
Joint ventures are when two [or more] businesses join forces to create a more powerful force in the marketplace. Think of as two heads are better than one.
Or more importantly, two databases are better than one!
Let me give you an example.
Jenny is a fitness trainer. She works primarily with her clients on a 1-2-1 basis but is finding it hard going fitting enough sessions in to her day whilst still generating the income that she is aiming for.
She has decided to start offering group sessions and fitness training programmes as a way of working with more clients, increasing her cash flow yet reducing the number of hours she works. But the big problem is her database. It’s just not big enough to market her programmes to.
So rather than spend hundreds of pounds on advertising in the local newspaper or even more on buying a database, she decides to seek out other businesses who have the clients she is looking for.
She approaches her local gym. Some may think this is a crazy idea as her local gym is a direct competitor of her business, but the manager of the gym is interested in talking. Although they have staff working there, they haven’t really got their act together in regards to personal training sessions and motivating their members.
You see, although they have a strong membership at present, very few people are coming in and using the gym. And they know when this happens, they start getting lots of cancellations.
By offering the gym members a discount on Jenny’s fitness programme, this gives the gym a great benefit to add to their membership subscription without it costing them a thing. It should also encourage the members to train more in the gym in between Jenny’s sessions because they are more motivated to train by themselves now they feel fitter, thus reducing the chance of cancellations.
OK, so this story is hypothetical. This could be too crazy for a lot of gym managers who just wouldn’t entertain this idea and turn Jenny down flat.
But we are in a very interesting economy at the moment. Sticking with the norm and assuming that a particular business will not want to talk to you is, well frankly madness!
Many businesses are experiencing huge slowdowns and one of the advantages to you is that slowdowns cause problems. If you can solve the right problems, it’s good for your business. And of course, good for the other businesses, too.
More and more businesses are looking at joint ventures and building collaborative partnerships – even with direct competitors! So doing business with your competitors really isn’t such a crazy idea.
The trick is being able to create an offer that benefits both parties, plus their customers.
If you are struggling to attract the right clients to your business, joint ventures could be the quickest [and cheapest] way of moving your business forward right now.
Who could you start talking to and create a win-win situation for you both?
Other articles you may be interested in:
- 80% of your competitors are doing it wrong!
- Business Mindset Matters: the start up story from a small business owner
- Failed Life Coach turned Business Owner