Small business collaboration leads to growth, innovation and less expense

Marc L. Goldberg

Small businesses are all about competing in tough environments. He does business in the shadow of the “big box” stores as well as the neighborhood competitor. While competition is inevitable, there are also countless opportunities to collaborate with other businesses to diversify your audience, reach new customers, and improve your products or services.

But first, what does collaborating with another small business mean?

According Sharita M. Humphrey, “It refers to organizations working together to solve problems and achieve goals that seem out of reach when working alone. By combining the expertise, perspectives and skills of different people and organizations, all parties involved are better able to innovate and grow.

When small businesses combine their physical (equipment, facilities and/or raw materials), human (employment, employees, skills and knowledge) and intellectual (combination of knowledge and skills) capital, you and your people can reduce costs, expand reach and find new sources of income. So change your approach to go it alone and develop a culture of collaboration.

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You and your people can each achieve growth by combining knowledge to achieve greater customer reach. As a small business, it’s hard to compete with larger entities, but combined with others, your reach can be more effective and efficient. By combining your efforts with others, you can expand your network. You can develop a larger network collectively than individually. Successful small businesses can form alliances outside of their own network and grow their business. How? “There are more hands on deck.”

Time is a small business owner’s toughest competitor. Humphrey advises, “When you collaborate with others, it allows you to do more together than individually.”

When you partner with others, innovation is possible. When a variety of skills, knowledge, experiences and ideas are brought in, they are brought to the creative table. Diversity, which drives positive growth and collaboration, is the start.

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When there is cooperation, the life cycle of bringing products to market is shorter since one partner can be the developer, another can be the producer and one partner can be the sales channel. Collaboration brings together the resources and skills of various actors to achieve positive results. To do this, small businesses need to share their knowledge and learn from each other. When this happens, positive results are generated beyond the ability of any one to do so.

Collaboration allows you to benefit from the skills and expertise of others and to share your own. Not only can innovation happen, but problems can be solved. When two or more small businesses bring their skills and experiences to a problem, it gets solved rather than just “throwing it down the road”, which can happen when a solo operator tries to solve all their own problems because maybe he doesn’t have the skills. and the necessary knowledge. When companies cooperate, they inevitably save money because they can extrapolate the impact of a marketing campaign when 3 or 4 companies collaborate against just one.

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Who should you consider as a collaboration partner? The website She patronizes Recommends you businesses whose owners you value and with whom you already do business and businesses that have similar or complementary target customers or products. Businesses located in a similar location or neighborhood to attract customers to each other. A business that is a local favorite. Choose one where you can cross-promote on social media and ones where you can cross-promote. If you can cross-promote and provide “deals,” you can add to both organizations’ revenue streams. This means co-promotion in traditional and digital media. Cooperating companies can create product/service packages that attract similar customers. Another way to collaborate is to offer combined social events that have a common brand image. It’s about creating relationships and collaboration builds them.

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A good example of collaboration occurred recently when a seasonal business Woolfies in Dennisportwhich had already closed for the season, has established a mutual relationship with Makers Market which operates on Saturday and Sunday mornings (8 a.m. to noon) at Collaborative family table (former Riverway Lobster House) in South Yarmouth. Dale Shadbegian’s Woolfies is a go-to brand that will drive customers from those who love muffins and breakfast sandwiches to those who may be exposed to family baked goods, salads, soups and ready meals. Jeni Wheeler’s Collaborative Table. Collaboration, cooperation and co-marketing all in one.

Contributed by Marc L. Goldberg, Certified Mentor. www.capecod.score.org508-774-4884, [email protected]. Source: Sharita M. Humphrey, Award-Winning Financial Expert, Financial Mentor and Certified Financial Education Instructor, She Boss Talks (

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