Over the past several years I have watched closely as business practices and 'HOW' people do business has changed. Our economy has been forever changed and many larger businesses are taking on the practices that have sustained small business for years. This past week I saw an advertisement that demonstrated this trend perfectly.

Let me begin with saying that as a small business owner, I recognized early on that I would NEVER EVER find a broad enough customer data base on my own. I just did not have the marketing budget to get the word out and did not have the time to seek them out one by one. And I became aware of the value of shared information.

I knew that my customers bought other things than what I had to offer. And I also knew that there were hundreds of potential clients nearby who purchased items and services from my peers - but knew nothing about my services of products.

It is for this reason that I began forming alliances. 'Forming alliances' is a term many small business owners are aware of - but few really practice well. Many small business owners shy away from forming true alliances for fear that they will lose their customer. And that my friend, is scarcity thinking at work.

Last week I saw a commercial advertisement on television put out by a very big company. The company was touting the fact that their product was a much needed product. The company was General Electric - and their product was turbines - that help create electricity.. And to prove their point they mentioned that without electricity that they could not brew beer. Instead of stopping at the point they made - they mentioned a specific beer; Budweiser.

Its not clear if Budweiser paid G.E. to appear in their commercial. But it is a clear example of alliance marketing. (view the commercial here)

It may seem like a simple concept to share information with peers and promote each other with joint offers or offering coupons from other businesses. All it takes is some time, effort and trust with your peer. Unfortunately many business owners think that they will either have to give up control or that their partner(s) in the alliance will not reciprocate with the same degree of enthusiasm as they have and the arrangement will be lopsided. Again scarcity thinking.

As a small business owner and an abundant thinker, I realize that sharing talents and information is critical to the success of any business in this new age. Creating joint coupon books, special joint offers or even appearing in each others' advertising is a great way to reach a larger audience. Metaphorically, it also shows that we all can play together in the sandbox together and do so happily.

"One of the keys to effective communication and dispute resolution is understanding ourselves and how we think and also understanding how others are wired as well. Each of us has personality styles that are unique to ourselves - however there are also patterns as well. When you understand the differing personality styles and their blends - you begin to see people as they are with more understanding! For more information on understanding personality styles please contact Mandie at president@roaringwomen.com."

Learn more about forming alliances here, or check out our upcoming webinar on forming alliances.
here: Affiliate Marketing

" Like this article? Sign up here:JOIN OUR NEWSLETTER list that offers more of these tips, coupons, inspiration and education that will help you propel your business to the next level! "

Author's Bio: 

Mandie Crawford is a marketing expert, business coach, trainer and motivational speaker who was recently awarded Calgary Business Woman of the Year for her contributions to the business community.

Mandie also has skills and expertise in providing high quality guidance in time management and system implementation for small a medium sized businesses. Her passion as a business and professional development coach is to helps women recognize their value and self worth.

She is the President of Roaring Women Ltd which is Canada’s premier national business support group for women in business that focuses on connecting, promoting and educating women in business. In her goal to encourage and educate women in building business across the country, she launched and completed a 6 week coaching tour in partnership with Staple Business Depot in 2008 where she coached over 600 women in business.

Mandie is mother to four children and 3 stepchildren and one highly energetic chocolate lab! Ms Crawford is also a former award winning police officer with Halton Regional Police.