One thing that has become clear, over the years, is that online business owners make very good use of the resources at their disposal. They don’t hire employees, but efficiently hire who they need for what they need by outsourcing. They leverage their time without getting stuck into the 9 to 5 grind. They also don't need any special education or training. They just do it.
One way they can leverage their time and the skills of others is by partnering with other like-minded people. There is no need to do all the work yourself when you can enlist the help of someone who possesses skills and assets you don’t have at your disposal. The right partnership can result in a much more profitable and less stressful products. It’s a win-win for everyone.
A Few Partnership Possibilities
Partnerships can be a short-term or a long-term thing and there are many ways you can work with another talented business owner. For example:
Co-create a report, information product or print book.
Content is a great way to showcase your expertise and build your audience. It’s even easier when you share the workload with somebody else and when you work with someone else, you can tap into each other’s audiences and share the responsibilities of promoting your work.
Blogging is another way to showcase your expertise. It also helps you grow and connect with your audience on a more personal level. Blogging with a partner or a group of partners makes it a whole lot easier to get regular content out to your readers. Plus, you get to leverage the existing audiences of your blogging partners.
Launch a full-scale business together.
Running a business is a lot of work and having someone else on board to shoulder responsibilities and share work can be a lifesaver. As a solopreneur, you know how hard it can be to get away from the business. What happens when you’re sick or heaven forbid, want a vacation? When you have a partner, it makes all that so much easier.
Those are just a few examples and throughout your business, you may come up with other countless ways you can partner with other people. The important thing is to find the right partner for the right project and that’s what we’ll talk about next.
Finding the Right Partner for You
A lot of people go into business together because they’re friends and they believe they’ve got a great business idea. This can be a good thing or it could very well be a bad thing. Just because you have a common interest, it doesn’t mean your partnership is meant to be.
As a biz owner, you already know that there are many responsibilities and tasks involved with any project you take on. There is content creation, product creation, marketing and administrative responsibilities to look after. And that’s barely scratching the surface, but you get my point. There is a lot involved and you need to think about that when you take on a partner. If you’re a great writer, but hate administrative tasks and aren’t much for marketing, you probably don’t want to partner with someone who also likes writing, but doesn’t care for the rest. In that case, you’re duplicating your talents, instead of maximizing on them.
For me, my best partnerships came when I worked with someone who complemented my skills. I’m a writer and marketer. I loathe administrative type stuff and tending to the small details. And while I can make my way around HTML and install some scripts, I’m not a terribly technical person. Therefore, when I want to form any type of partnership, I want to find people who can fill those gaps for me.
Of course, not every partnership will create a perfect whole and you’ll probably still need extra help and special skills. In that case, my partner and I have to be prepared to outsource whatever else we need. For example, for one of my private label content businesses, I have partnered with someone who covers the administrative part of things, manages our writers and tends to those day-to-day tasks. I focus on the marketing and writing of promotional materials.
While we can take care of a lot of the technical work, whenever we need something more complex done, we outsource to our tech-gal in order to fill in those gaps. This allows us to be a complete partnership that leverages everyone’s skills to the best of our abilities.
Dividing the Work and Money
Before you start building websites and setting up products, you have a number of things to consider and make clear between the two of you. Here are a few things to think about:
Are they going to carry their own weight?
Make sure the person you work with is reliable. They can be the best friend in the world, but until you’ve worked together, you won’t know what they’re like as a partner. Start by working on a small project and expand that into something bigger as you’re both ready for it.
Are you both bringing valuable skills and assets to the business?
How you determine the value of everyone’s contribution is up to you, but make sure your roles are clear and you’re both comfortable with the division of work and assets. In many partnerships, you may decide on a 50/50 income split, but if someone’s contribution is going to be smaller, adjust your income split accordingly. Just know this before you make an agreement.
Who is responsible for which tasks?
Not only do you need to decide which skills and assets you’re both bringing to the table, but you need to break it down into tasks. Write down everything that needs to be done for the business and who will be responsible for each task.
Who is responsible for finances?
Finances can also be tricky. You can both come to the table with a specific dollar investment. Or if you’re running a bootstrap operation and have low overhead, one person might be responsible for paying the monthly expenses and then profits would be divided after the responsible partner pays themselves back. There is no right or wrong way to arrange it, but it’s important to have a full and complete understanding of how finances will work including how profits will be calculated, how often you will get paid and more.
Of course, the most important thing is to have all this in writing and in a contract. It probably sounds more complicated than it really is, but it protects both of you and it also helps you ensure the success of your project. If you have all this down on paper, you’ll both know exactly what you need to do to make your partnership work.
Having a partner brings new possibilities to your business. It means you can take on new projects, leverage other people’s built-in audiences and skills. And the beauty of it all is that you can still do it all from home by communicating through email, phone and other modern day communication methods.
Alice has built some great partnerships over the years, going way back to when her & I partnered together on what was known as Solo Masterminds (man, that was so long ago!). Today, she still continues to form relationships and build successful partnerships. And if you're looking for some PLR for your content marketing needs, be sure to check her sites: Publish for Prosperity & eKitHub.