Segment 20 - Strategic Partner Network
So we are going to cover as we have in every second we're going to cover a lot of ground with this one I'm going to introduce really one kind of the final topic if you will that's new ah but then we are going to jump into bringing a few of you individually up here two really talk about remember I gave you homework and told you go home and work on this or go back to your hotels and work on this and so we're gonna bring a few of you up to see what kind of progress you've made you're you're also free as I suspect maybe some of you will to say I don't get this or I didn't get this or didn't do the homework and so then maybe as a group will sort of collectively help you fill in that segment if that is the case that you're in all right so we're gonna end talking about a strategic partner network and this is really this is an element of referral generation quite frankly and in fact a lot of times you know in my one of my previous books that referral injun I cover this content a lot of times w...
hen I get asked to speak broadly on the whole topic of referrals this is a this is a key segment because I think that the ability to build an effective strategic partner network might be one of the most potent things that that you can do now the way you power that strategic partner network is everything we've talked about, you know, previously in this program having content and having a really clear idea of who makes an ideal client and having your core message I mean, these are all things that and why they came first in this program is because these are all things that really power a lot of these other things that we've talked about like your sales process and like your social media and you can't really skip one and expect to do well in some of the others and you'll see how I bring that into this idea of a strategic partner network I think pretty quickly now let me define what I mean by that because again, strategic partner, that could mean a lot of things when I'm essentially talking about his other non competing businesses that have your same potential ideal client are ideal prospect in mind who could somehow that you could somehow develop a relationship with so that you could actually co market or or somehow they could refer you or they could bring you in to speak a lot of the things that we talked about actually intentionally building a network of businesses that that could do that and and the reason I really love this is because a lot of times when people think in terms of referrals, they really focus on primarily if not exclusively on their clients, which I understand their customers I mean I get that they know how brilliant you are they could talk you know very very elegantly about what it is that you do what you've done and the results that they've gotten but the nice thing about developing a street strategic partner network is that the right strategic partner might have one hundred or two hundred you know prospects that they can introduce you to or that they could put you in front of and so in terms of really having a powerful and referral tool there's really a few things that beat it the right customer might have three or four friends or neighbors or colleagues that they can think of on dso you really the you know, the math on this obviously I think is what makes it worth putting in the effort to do this so here's the essential kind of framework for how to build a strategic partner network the first one is you have to adopt the right frame of mind a lot of times when I start talking about the strategic partnering idea people think in terms of oh yeah I'll go and find other people who could help me write I'll find other people who could send business to me and what I'd like you to do is consider your existing customers and ask yourself what are all the other services products things that they might actually need in order to grow their business make their life what they wanted to be you know succeed in other ways what are all the other things that they need and so then from asking that question I want to I want to suggest that you then try to build a the strategic partner network or this team of best of class providers that could actually fill as many of those needs as possible right? So instead of thinking in terms ofthe who could I get to refer me think in terms of how can I be a how could I add value to my client's life or to my customers life by being a resource for them for everything else that they might need right so that when you build trust with a customer when you're working with a customer and they go oh you know we really haven't found that florist or we really haven't you know found that other thing that we need you know for our wedding or for whatever it is we're doing that you're actually khun saying you know what here's a person or here's a couple people that I trust that I know I mean I've worked with I'd love to refer to you so I think that now let's only what's going to happen is if you get in the habit of doing this you know the end game and all of this is that you will end of generating referrals you will end up having strategic partners who send you business but if you look at it as a way to actually increase the value that you provide your customers I think you'll go in with the right frame of mind so in other words as you develop this best of class team you know you have to constantly be asking yourself would I refer my best customer to these people or they don't make it on the list so what I think the mistake that a lot of people make when they start this idea is they go and they start trying to find hey who could send me the most business andi I think that that's where the breakdown occurs immediately but if you if you said if I didn't get a single referral from any of my strategic partners but I was able to actually help my customers get more of what they needed by referring people to them I think that this idea would have value to you does that make sense because that's a that's a that's a a shift for a lot of people and how to really approach this sow again I can't stress enough nobody shows up on your list of people that you would want to be strategic partners unless they meet that qualification you really feel like you would send your best customer to them okay so the next step is then I want you to think in terms of identifying you know who are you know what are all these needs that my customers actually have what you know and you may not come up with the whole comprehensive list but I would suggest we went around the room you could you could start you know, spouting out eight or ten you know, potential other non competing strategic partners that could be it could show up on this list then you're going to want to recruit those and I'm going to show you a very specific process for for how I've done this for years but then you're gonna want to and this is where a lot of times this breaks down once you identify and recruit those people and you get him interested in talking to you about an idea of a strategic partner network you know what you're going to do to activate him there's a lot of people you've probably had people over the years they said hey, we should be working together you know, we really have the same clients and I really like what you're doing and then you shake hands and never talk about it again right because nobody really has the the the tool or the processed actually put this in place in a way that makes sense and then if you really take this idea too hard I'm going to suggest that you can actually build an entire kind of platform around this idea when I mean by platform is is so the platform that we talked about in the earlier in the programme the blogging, the podcasting, the video, the speaking that you think in terms of how could you engage your strategic partner network in that so could use could these be guests bloggers? Could these be people you interviewed could these be people that you did videos with? Could these be people that you would act that would actually invite you in to their networks to speak? So you take that platform idea now and you bring it over to your strategic partner network as well. So that was the overarching explanation so now let's break each of those down so the first one is simply to identify so let me let me engage you guys in this um in this component of it so I have a couple of forms that we use all the time one is for b to b and one is for b to c but if if so if I were to ask you to identify some potential strategic partners so I'm goingto pick on jason who would who would potential strategic part is just so obvious that's why I had to do it just to get the ball rolling. I was looking for that's what who are who are some potential strategic partners for your business as you grasp this concept most most notably that comes to mind would be wedding planners, wedding coordinators, right florists photographers of course we'll really everybody in the ecosystem yeah exactly but really I mean in the end right because you know wedding planner may actually in some ways be may actually be too big you know not a big necessarily but may want to control all the components of it right whereas all the moving parts I might actually want to or might actually be more prepared to actually refer each other right um and I'm sure that you've had people that come to you that aren't using a wedding planner that are still missing six or eight of the of the components are hadn't thought of that so some of you like you're you're some of your courses that you do like the timeline course sure a lot of that is to identify here's all the years all the things people usually do in this that you might not have thought of right right so that to me you know your list would be pretty easy but how would you identify necessarily the best ones because I'm not talking about a yellow pages directory here right we wanted this is your best of class team how could you identify those in in my current sales pitch if you will in my meetings that I have which you're teaching right well not your pitch your current sales teaching my sales teacher where have I been film students in that process one of the things that I actually speak to is working with a team of professionals so 00:10:04.79 --> 00:10:07. everybody being on the same page whether there's three 00:10:07.59 --> 00:10:10. of us or thirty of us working together to make sure 00:10:10.15 --> 00:10:13. that we meet one core common goal which is the outcome 00:10:13.1 --> 00:10:16. of this wedding so those are the people that I would 00:10:16.62 --> 00:10:18. look to to put on that list of people that are going 00:10:18.5 --> 00:10:21. to be on board with everything that happens and butting 00:10:21.17 --> 00:10:23. heads through the process right totally totally agree 00:10:23.53 --> 00:10:26. with that but how do you identify who those actual 00:10:26.08 --> 00:10:29. people are? Apparently I don't know that okay okay 00:10:29.6 --> 00:10:32. so there isn't anyone answer I mean some sometimes 00:10:32.51 --> 00:10:36. by reputation, right? I mean they're venders or suppliers 00:10:36.44 --> 00:10:39. that everybody knows they're just great right? But 00:10:39.16 --> 00:10:41. one of the greatest places to find people to put on 00:10:41.63 --> 00:10:44. this list of yours is to ask your customers who else 00:10:44.88 --> 00:10:47. do they buy from who else do they think is best of 00:10:47.19 --> 00:10:51. class? The nice thing about starting there with your 00:10:51.14 --> 00:10:55. list is that if they really already refer you know 00:10:55.35 --> 00:10:58. they really already trust that person you've kind 00:10:58.33 --> 00:11:00. of got a common bond already write you both share 00:11:00.65 --> 00:11:04. a customer so you have I think that potential opportunity 00:11:04.19 --> 00:11:07. to really take that at least those people that's the 00:11:07.78 --> 00:11:11. first place to goto look to be on your list so no 00:11:11.02 --> 00:11:14. you haven't really shared any of your strategic partners 00:11:14.2 --> 00:11:17. what about what what what jumps to mind when you hear 00:11:17.4 --> 00:11:20. that idea of what could be well who might show up 00:11:20.84 --> 00:11:22. on your list what types of businesses might show up 00:11:22.8 --> 00:11:27. on your list so for me it would be other women in 00:11:27.23 --> 00:11:30. business who have the lifestyle thing going so it 00:11:30.33 --> 00:11:37. could be people in health and fitness s o r the common 00:11:37.17 --> 00:11:39. thing would be that we work with women business so 00:11:39.8 --> 00:11:41. mine would be more of the business strategy howto 00:11:42.21 --> 00:11:45. get super focus and focus on one thing at a time moving 00:11:45.56 --> 00:11:49. forward and incorporating fun so I would look for 00:11:49.85 --> 00:11:52. people in the lifestyle space so that's where I was 00:11:53.07 --> 00:11:56. so your current clients are used are you I'm just 00:11:56.74 --> 00:11:58. starting you're just okay so the idea would be that 00:11:58.9 --> 00:12:01. you would look at your current clients and say hey 00:12:01.35 --> 00:12:04. if I'm looking for people that want this from me there's 00:12:04.06 --> 00:12:06. a good chance that they that they're also looking at you know nutrition and health and fitness and those areas so you'd want to maybe start identifying people that you could when you started working with them I'm guessing that if you're helping them design their lifestyle plan you know these airprod components that you're going to tell him you need to be doing thanks right and so so it's I think in your case it's almost part of your product teo really tohave that strategic partner network is so I think that that's one of the goals that you ought to really set out, right away is to start identifying you know who who those people are because I know in and in your case a lot of times people come to you and they want the strategic component but they want all the tactical things that you don't either have the expertise to do you want to do s so it becomes part of your product a cz well does that make sense yeah and so for so far of my web tv show that I want to start I can find fill in the blank so women are so focused on the business they neglect the lifestyle so I can figure out what other people are doing that and then interview them howto get better at this or how to spend more time doing the things and I think you'll have the opportunity because you will probably attract people that are working with some of those professionals already on dh that might be the opportunity for you to start expanding your or define people that people already know and trust so anybody else have ah you want to share what in your world what would what would be some potential great strategic partners coach is like a business coaching you are our life coaches I mean they're they're sort of merging thursday's web designers a bookkeeper anything that small business owners need right and I think again probably a great ifyou're because one of things you're trying to do it's just not just identify somebody who can do that it's got to be somebody you again the the the bar that I always like to say that you would send your best client without hesitation so it does require you to do a little work to learn that you know from those people and how they operate kind of on that obviously is a d j my personality is what I saw which means I'm only available for one of it at a time is it okay to have my competitors on that list a cz well in the sense that I'm unavailable yeah that's a really great question um I think that absolutely is because and I'm sure that there are certain industries like that worse is really common where people like I can't do it but you know throw it overto you know so and so I mean I think that's a really common practice and I think I'm a firm believer that at some point in time you're going to get that back right you know maybe maybe tenfold so so absolutely that they should I mean obviously you want to take the work you want to take sure but I think that if you can make somebody happy by saying look go to this person they'll take care of you I think that's a win for both right on I do think that would come back s o that's great great question okay so now that we've identified some of these people we've built this list of potential strategic partners by talking to our clients or by just by reputation or just really by going out and really you know scouring or maybe it's people you actually do business with that are you that you already know I mean there's lots of ways for people to show up on your list now we want to take the process of actually educating those people right because if we well let me back up what we want to do now is invite those people right to actually be a part of our strategic partner network and so I'm going to show you a couple tools or a process for how you actually make that happen and one of them starts with you first developing a tool so that you can properly educate your strategic partners so remember we talked about how when I spot your ideal client and I told you this would come back again you need to be able to tell people that are going to be your potential strategic partners frankly you need to be able to tell your existing customers who might want to refer you you know how they would spot your ideal customer how to present kind of here's what we do that's different you know, here's our core message you might think in terms of developing a list of trigger statements we haven't talked about this much, but anybody who's really been selling any period of time it all recognizes when a client says something that you go oh you need us you know you you just said the exact thing that you know that really demonstrates that you really need us so like for instance in my business people will commonly say I'm doing really great marketing but it's it's totally unorganized which you know really means that that whole systems approach is really going to appeal to them or we have grown to a certain point and now he seems stuck and we can't go to the next level I mean those are those are actual phrases that people will say that almost always guarantees that that is somebody that my message is going to resonate with because they're experiencing the exact thing that I need and and I call those trigger statements because people never ever has anybody well I shouldn't say ever but most of time people don't come to me and say I wish I had more marketing right? Or I wish I had a marketing consultant but they do say we're stuck and we can't go to the next level and so that's a trigger statement I will go a lot of software companies and and nobody ever walks around says I sure wish I had more accounting software right? They say my receivables you know we're never on my accountant's always after me because we can't get him, you know, updated reports so those types of things that I've actually worked with clients over the years where we've had him develop a whole page of of statements that they've heard and that they know if somebody's saying this or thinking this or experiencing this you know that that's who you should refer to us on dh actually had a law firm one time that we developed a whole page and they would laminate it and give it to all their best clients who wanted to refer them and that their client would just stick it in the in a drawer somewhere when they were talking to somebody who said you know I have you know, one of their list of trigger statements it was kind of like ok that's now is the time that I really should refer so that could be really kind of a fun thing to play with to say if you hear somebody say acts you know tell them that we can help right? So think about that at some point but if you have some sort of referral offer and then also well your your marketing process so when you refer somebody to us here is what we actually do with that referral you want to make sure that you put people's minds at ease so that you're not going to just now start spamming them or you just going to start calling them all the time that you say look, we're going to invite them to this we'll send them this free information. We just tell him what it is you're going to do. What I've found is by having kind of this, this formal education process, and, again, you can definitely you definitely should create something like this for your existing customers with those customers that come to you and say, how can I help? I would love to tell the world about your business. You want to actually sit down with them and maybe go through this or giving a sheet of paper that has this kind of information on it. So, you know, we we've created, actually, a form that basically asked those specific questions. So if you're trying to educate somebody on how to refer you but the rial way that this idea applies to your strategic partner network I call this first when the perfect introduction right that that's that's a way so that if your son was going to introduce you to their friends or their neighbour you know this is kind of the perfect this is the perfect information you want them to use right? But if you just sent that to a potential strategic partner and said hey we wantyou refers your pride I'm going to get very far right I don't think you will experience tells me you want right but if you take that idea and flip it around and so you've identified your list of let's say it's eight or ten or twenty potential strategic partners what if you send them a letter that said we have clients that we believe could benefit from your products or services or maybe even we have a mutual client right? Because it's somebody you share a client with andi we believe we have other clients that we believe could benefit from your business and we'd love it from your products or services and we'd love it if you would spend a few minutes and tell us the best way to refer you to our clients when we have that need and by the way we have included a form in there that you can fill out so we know how to best refer you to make it very easy for you to tell us how to refer you and we've also included a completely form on our business just so that you understand the best way to fill out this form and if you're interested in talking you know send that send that back to us so what we've done here is everybody guess what we've done here is we've kind of completely flipped this idea around so instead of saying hey you guys look really great about you could send us some business let's talk sometime about being partners you're basically inviting people to tell you about their business because you think that you might have potential opportunities for them now if you got that letter would you be a totally still pay a little more attention to it maybe be a little more apt to respond to that and then you've made it really easy because you've you've given him essentially a form that they can complete to send back that information and you've showed them how you've completed it so you kind of you you have without them knowing it you've educated them on your business right? But the entire basis of this idea is that nobody shows up on your list unless you truly would want to know about their business and potentially refer them so my folks that I have gotten to use this process that I call the perfect introduction in reverse get about a fifty percent return on these so they identify and in some cases businesses that don't know them at all you know they just showed up on list because they had a high reputation and they wanted to network with this business they'll get about a fifty percent return on people saying okay whether they fill out the form or they just e mailed back or call back and say that was interesting let's talk I'd like to learn more about your business on dso you've started the process than of kind of recruiting these people um and here's the next kind of key component to that because you don't want to just have a meeting and have them tell yes you do you want to kind of vet them you want to learn about their business they may actually be a potential referral source but you don't want it to end there you want to actually be that person or that business that says hey, I have an idea how we can take this farther right away so once you've recruited and you've had this introduction kind of meeting think in terms of what would be the content opportunities so instead of just saying hey, we should work together sometime what if you said hey I'd like to do a video interview with you I'd like to do a podcast with you I'd liketo have I'd like to have you right a guest post for our block post because you know these would be some ways that I actually you could actually get good content you could actually expose you know their businesses to your networks all of a sudden you're not only making it easy you're making suggestions and ideas for them right away to benefit by being part of your strategic network even though they don't really know that that's what they signed up for necessarily yet you might even think in terms of you know what would be some special offers that you could get from them so in other words do they have products that they would like to give you do they have some sort of discounts they'd like to give you that you could share you know with your network teo help expose them I worked years ago with a a graphic designer that went to a print shop and for any time somebody came to them and designed that they wanted a new logo for their business they would give them a gift certificate for five hundred three business cards at the print shops all of sudden you here was the graphic designer who was designing your logo who also got, you know, free business cards. Well, the print shop of course knew that you were probably gonna get other stuff. You know, back when we used letterhead and envelopes and things like that, you were probably order a lot of other stuff so that five hundred business cards was nothing if that got you in the door but for the graphic designer that was a little value add that got that got her business because she was able to go to her clients and say oh by the way if you're a new client of mine you know this is something special you get so a lot of your potential strategic partners mike might want to put together an entire package you know of that type of thing because they get exposure for that but you get value add for doing that obviously if you have the opportunity start making referrals to some of these strategic partners if you can become customers of the strategic partners rate them review them really build this kind of bond and really right now everything I've talked about is your feels like maybe you're kind of giving in this relationship but what ultimately will happen of course is that they'll start seeing value in that they'll start talking about you they will not they will I can almost guarantee you they will send you business just by virtue of the fact that you are giving them opportunities to expose their business to your pretend your network your clients does that make sense is anybody doing any kind of any kind of strategic relationships right now that that have that mirror this in any way at all I'm working on I'm working on serious portrait serious actually I wanted teo have you photographed for me later you take pictures of me looking like this it was signing the book was actually it's, really fun, because I get to interact with authors and creatives, musicians and create interesting portrait other off their work and it's. A way for me, teo, to create something interesting and show up in a creative relationship was more like a famous but familiar faces into my into my own wart. Sure, so, yeah, that's, great that's, great, anybody else? What are you doing? Well, I've actually met some people through creative live who have other steamy on here. I've watched them and watching other things and there's, this one girl named gina heart, who is like a hybrid of oprah and martha stewart, and so even planning the controls, a visual, actually, e s in the contest, she offers. So we've been planning an interview, siri's back and forth, so I'll interview her on xmas e and then she'll do the same, and so that's been pretty cool same with a couple of other people who have ok so these air great these air great starters ideas e I hope you see that I'm asking you to think much bigger about a nen tire platform where you you are providing your entire strategic network value before you're ever really asking for anything what you can also do almost immediately though is if you are producing content like I know you're going to now that you're going all going to be content machines is that you can also turn that around and say look I'd like to write a guest blogged post for your log if you have that I've written this incredible e book that people seem to love I'd love to let you have it and send it to your network you can actually co branded put your logo on it as well on dh send it out to your network obviously it's going to talk about your business and you know at the end it's going tio going to provide lots of great content but in the end it's going toe also give you the opportunity to be introduced to their network tell them if you've created a great workshop which I know many of you were working on your killer you know point of view workshop now that you're going to go out there on give talks on so go to your strategic partners now and and suggests that you would be happy to do that workshop for them well put together take take a handful of your strategic partners three or four of your strategic partners and put together a half day of workshop so that you all just invite your your networks or you all kind of cross pollinate your networks so these are all ways that you can then use once you've built and started developed these relationships with your strategic partners these air all the ways that you can activate that strategic partner network and use your content to make it very easy for them to introduce you to their entire network I think that's where this idea breaks down a little bit for some people is that everybody has great intentions to work together but it's a lot of work to figure out how to work together but if you come to them and say here's an e book you could send this out to your audience free of charge it's great content you can put your logo on it because you're not producing content even though john told you you needed to be producing content so so you kind of automatically sort of activate that by being the one who shows up with a sort of out of the box solution where you going ask something on yeah I was going to say maybe this is kind of an example of exactly what you're talking about so in developing the teacher training for maximum performance yoga I've reached out and I've looked for celebrity yoga teachers who are already out there using social media one example is I found a teacher a male yoga teacher who does athletic yoga in austin, texas was in austin for a conference we had dinner I said hey I would love to feature you on the teacher training program he says great you know? But I've been working so hard on my brand he has he has like twelve thousand likes on facebook he says I don't want to give up my brand and I said to him you don't have to give up your brand in fact use your brand you khun just work with us when it's convenient will promote and market you and then in exchange you market us to your brand so I think the idea of ah letting other independent contractors keep their brand keep what they're doing and partnering is starting to serve us and there was another yoga teacher too who came on board because we didn't make her give up her brand keep do what she's good at and then cross promote yeah now that's that's a great variation of what I just talked about it and particularly in your case because it's going to bed bring your very specific audience together because they already have built that audience of people that should be interested in what, what it is that you're doing so absolutely any thoughts or questions about this idea of strategic relationships are we wearing him out well I think some people are still having some questions on how they balance all of this thanks. Question comes from a new bond they say so do I need to partner with joint venture partners if I have products and services there's no way I can also be producing content and doing all the social interaction and establishing these conti's connections with these other partners now this is why all big companies have sales departments but what if we are still the only person in our company yeah so that that becomes I mean it's a distribution channel is what it becomes so the decision on whether or not to do that joint ventures that actually could be pretty powerful I mean they already have a network they may be already have a sales channel they may be already have established customers obviously there's a trade off you know what are they gonna want in order to do that joint venture right or they're gonna want fifty percent of the sale is and that could be a good decision on your part but you have to make that decision so it becomes a distribution and a scale question you know how do you want to grow how do you want to distribute your products? Do you want teo ultimately billed to the point over time where maybe you start hiring sales people so I think that's it's really? More it probably comes all the way back to session one where we were talking about, you know, what's the picture of your business and three years on dh that I think that's. How you ultimately make some decisions about that specific question.