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Newsletter #854: The “Find a Great Partner” Issue

[Welcome back to the Damn, I Wish I’d Thought of That! newsletter. This is text of the great issue all of our email subscribers just received. Sign yourself up using the handy form on the right.]

Part of being a great marketer is becoming really good at making friends and establishing healthy partnerships. And it’s all probably easier than you think. How you could do it:

1. For distribution
2. For content
3. For rent
4. Check it out: The Idea Swap

1. For distribution

Sometimes the success of a product simply comes down to being able to get your stuff in front of people. Because it’s so fundamental to success, you should constantly be looking for smart partnerships to help you do it. That’s what Starbucks did when they partnered with hotels to offer ground coffee for guests. Through the partnership, they had the chance to get into more than 500,000 rooms. Sure, Starbucks has more negotiating power than most of us. But no matter what you sell, there’s probably a partner out there you haven’t thought of yet who could help get your products into the hands of potential customers.

The lesson: Think about the companies your customers also buy from and just start asking around. If the partnership is right, someone out there would love to work with you.

Learn more: CNNMoney

2. For content

You don’t have to put all the creative burden of coming up with great content on yourself. This is the thinking that went into Whole Foods and The Container Store’s partnership to create a series of back to school videos. The content was pretty simple — it featured employees from both brands offering tips — but it was useful, timely, and through teamwork both got to reach a much larger audience.

The lesson: Great content partners not only help you create fantastic new stuff to share, but they’ll also have an existing audience you can reach.

Learn more: The Dallas Morning News

3. For rent

Wouldn’t it be nice to wipe out an entire fixed cost like rent? Seems like something from magic land, but sandwich shop Rising Roll Gourmet has worked out a number of partnerships where not only do they not pay rent — but some landlords are actually paying them up to $30,000 just to be in their buildings. It’s the result of a competitive commercial real estate market and Rising Roll’s cleverness: Their “express” stores use pre-cooked food, so there’s very little build-out and no need for ovens or ventilation systems. They make it painless for building owners and in return give them an edge when companies are comparing office locations.

The lesson: Think about your biggest challenges around finances, product features, or market share and start looking for those home run partners who can help you overcome them.

Learn more: QSR

4. Check it out: The Idea Swap

Have an idea that you’d prefer to see live on rather than just fade away in your head? Looking for some quick inspiration? This site is where ideas both big and small get traded.

Check it out: The Idea Swap

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  1. Johnathan Crawford October 13, 2011 at 10:17 am #

    Whole Foods and the Container Store’s collaboration is an excellent example of “marriage marketing.” From my experience, the biggest obstacle to getting companies to work together is their respective egos. Often, they are so afraid of sharing their customers with another company- even non competing companies- that they miss out on opportunities.

    More companies should seize the opportunity of expanding their reach through partnerships.

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