Securing partnerships with big companies: a quick guide

I know that many of the postal service providers, who own large data sets, are keen to exploit new sources of revenue as their traditional business is in decline. I also know that they are keen to move into the digital market and that we have a perfect fit both in terms of the technology that we provide which enables data to be sold efficiently to smaller companies as well as a strong presence in the target market.

The process of identifying and selecting potential partners is really no different from selling to any business. You find out what it is that the customer needs, identify how your service will meet that need and target businesses that fit the profile.

Hopefully once youve landed the first one, you can then use the experiences and references gained from that to attract others.

A value exchange

Working with large partners is never going to be easy. Large corporates have established processes and structures that move slowly and are very political by their nature. For SMEs, this can be frustrating as it clashes with their agility and quicker decision processes.

It can also be easy to feel intimidated as well as flattered when large partners express an interest in your business. As a business owner you must have the confidence in what you’re doing and dont try and force the pace.

My overriding philosophy when dealing with partners is to make them look good. Whilst I aim to provide them with a level of support which makes them notice me, I am otherwise happy to take a back seat in the relationship on the basis that this enables them to take full advantage of its success.

Guy Mucklow is CEO and founder of Postcode Anywhere.

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