What Bruno Mars, Sting, Rihanna & Ziggy Marley Can Teach Us About Joint Ventures

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Joint Ventures at the Grammys!

A couple of weeks I watched, with millions of others, the Grammys. Great show as usual, but I have to say my favorite part by far was the Tribute to Bob Marley with a joint performance by Sting, Bruno Mars, Rihanna, and Ziggy Marley. The rocked it! You can check out the performance here if you missed it.

But as my warped brain normally works I thought, wouldn’t this be an great topic to discuss? I mean here you have American, English, and Jamaican musicians coming together to sing one of the greatest hits of all time. Artists from completely different genres coming together to celebrate what they love most – music.

However, we see these sort of “joint ventures” everywhere. Even if we don’t realize it. Companies joining forces to expand their reach, increase exposure, and grow their brands and companies. We’ve seen it with Apple and Microsoft, SONY and BMG, Abbot and Costello. And YES, Abbot and Costello was a joint venture! Where would Abbot be without Costello, and vice-versa.

Joint ventures is the backbone of many success stories and continues to be. And if you want to take your business to the next level (as I do), this is a very important step.

I have to confess. I have not taken advantage of this powerful strategy as often as I should, but it’s definitely on my checklist for this year! However, I will share with you my past and most successful joint venture and the results I had from it, so you can begin to do the same for yourself.

The key lesson to point out is that all you need to have in common with your joint venture partner is the desire to provide a common end result to like-minded individuals. In the case of the Grammys, although the musicians created different types of music as individuals, there was one thing their audiences all had in common – the love of music.

Thus you just have to find out who in your circle also caters to others who “love music”, but the not the same type of music – and reach out to them. Understand?

One of the most successful joint ventures I was a part of was The Synergy of Business & Blogging Giveaway I created two years ago where I got together 31 bloggers and business owners to contribute an article. Not only did I get exposure from this giveaway, but so did everyone participating. Here was a perfect example of people getting together, from many different industries, but all had a love for two things – business and blogging and the desire to share what they loved most with others.

My results spoke for themselves:

  • My email list grew more from that giveaway than it had the whole year prior!
  • It immediately established me as an industry expert and leader.
  • It allowed me to immediately and quickly build a relationship with those that participated.
Does a joint venture have to be this involved? Of course not. You can get just as good results pairing up with someone who has an already good standing in your industry to jumpstart your progress.

Here are a few strategies you can consider:

  1. Create a spreadsheet with a list of people you’d like to work with. Ideally you would like to collaborate with those people whom are a few steps ahead of you so getting in front of their audience will be very beneficial to you; and yet you can still contribute to them as well.  However, collaboration with people at the same level of their business as you can still have great potential to help spread the word about your business – and often times it’s easiest to start here.
  2. Start looking at “competitors” as collaborators. Is there something they are not currently providing to your shared target audience that you can contribute? Reach out to them and see if they’d be interested in working with you?
  3. Make it SUPER easy for the other person to work with you. One of the first things I consider when others are reaching out to me to do a joint venture is how much work am I going to have to put into this? Unfortunately sometimes that determines whether or not I’ll consider a joint venture. I just have a lot on my plate and taking out some elses agenda can prove to be a bit too much. However, when they come to me with prewritten swipe files all good to go and all I have to do on my part is to schedule them into my calendar, than that’s a whole other ball game!

Note: When I say “swipe file” I’m just talking about pre-created content already created for use. That is, if you are asking someone to promote your product, program, or service, providing already created emails, tweets, status updates for them to “swipe” and use would make this collaboration a lot easier and more appealing. The less work the other person has to do the better the odds that they will agree to a collaboration with you. 😉

Have you been involved in any joint ventures yet? Tell us about it!

2 Comments

  1. I like the analogy here, Michele. You captured the a major part of what I am currently working on which is to foster an atmosphere of community NOT competition among those around me doing similar things as I. After all, we are all unique. Not everyone is right for us, but whoever IS will be attracted to us as. That’s how I feel.

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