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Below are the benefits and dangers of partnerships.

Benefit 1: Compete with larger businesses

For a small business or entrepreneur, partnering with an established brand could give you the clout you need to get off the ground. Larger companies have marketing resources, budgets, and even brand recognition that could take you years to acquire. Leveraging this kind of partnership will help you compete with businesses much larger than the ones you’d be able to on your own.

Benefit 2: Save money or pool resources

From something as simple as joining with some other smaller businesses to buy supplies in bulk, some types of strategic partnerships can save you money. Grab a few friends and rent an office together or split a hotel at an upcoming conference. Or, find a non-competing business with a similar target market and launch a joint marketing campaign. Be creative and think outside the box—these types of partnerships are generally low-key and low-risk, so jump in!

Benefit 3: Focus on your core competencies

When you pass off something to a strategic partner (maybe your bookkeeping or IT), that frees up your time and energy for other things. If you have a solid relationship with a great partner, it gives you the opportunity to focus on what your business does best—building your brand and making you more profitable in the end.

Danger: Biting off more than you can chew

There are a lot of scenarios that could fall into this category, but they all boil down to you either 1) not being quite ready for the arrangement or 2) agreeing to something that overextended your business. Sure, a partner could turn out to be a complete bust, or another market factor tanks the agreement, but the bottom line is that you (and by extension your company) probably just weren’t ready.

However, if you’ve taken my advice up to this point planning, researching, and preparing carefully for a strategic partnership, you’ll be ready to roll without a hitch.

Still need some more advice? I’m happy to give you some feedback as you look to find a strategic partner that works for you.