Online Service Providers and How Partnerships Can Benefit and Grow Their Business

When many business owners think of online joint ventures, they assume they are for the people selling products. The truth is that many online service providers can also benefit from, and profit from, joint venture partnerships.

Here are just a few of the ways an online service provider can benefit from a joint venture partnership:

1. Ad swaps - Most online service providers - whether they are virtual assistants, copywriters, designers, professional or personal coaches, bookkeepers, transcriptionist etc…have a website. Chances are they have an ezine too. One potential partnership might include the swapping of advertising space with a relevant business. This can be particularly helpful if you’re on a budget and looking for new clients.

For example, a business coach could swap ad space on a website or in an ezine with a virtual assistant. Many people using a business coach are often looking for ways to optimize their time, and a virtual assistant may be exactly what they’re looking for. Likewise, people using a virtual assistant might be able to benefit from the services of a business coach, particularly if they’re looking for ways to grow their business.

2. Email and promotions - If you have an opt in list, or at least a list of customers, you can promote the services of a relevant business in your communications, or even as part of your next business promotions. Likewise, your partner can do the same for you. One idea to consider is not merely swapping, but placing an ad in your regular email communications with the agreement that you receive a small percentage of the profits. You were going to send out the email anyway - now you can make a little bit of money with it.

3. Guest bloggers - Blogging on your own site connects you with your customers. Blogging on another site connects you with their customers – who may become your customers. Blogging is an excellent way to establish not only a rapport with prospects; you can also demonstrate your skills and knowledge, thereby increasing your credibility as a service provider. You can swap guest blogs or you can share any profits that come your way by virtue of the blog, or you can make some other arrangement that works well for the both of you.

4. Ezine content writer - Like blogs, swapping ezine content is something that will help build your exposure and credibility. Additionally, ezines are easily shared with others and archived for lasting stickiness.

5. Product creation - Many service providers also offer information products like ebooks to give away with a newsletter subscription, or even books or audios to sell. Partnering with another business owner to create a product can be a tremendous opportunity. Create a promotional product to give away for free, distribute it to both of your lists, and include advertisements and offers in the book for both of your businesses. OR sell the ebook to both of your lists.

6. Swap services - What tasks have you considered outsourcing? Administrative tasks? Copywriting? Bookkeeping? Graphic design? As a service provider you can offer your services in exchange for a partner’s services. For example, a copywriter may be excellent at writing copy but horrible at designing a website. Trade a comparable amount of copywriting projects for a complete website overhaul and you’ve both benefited tremendously from the deal.

7. Cross-sell - This is a fun one that many service businesses forget about. Consider cross-selling. For example, as a virtual assistant you could promote and offer copywriting services to your clients as a partnership. Your copywriting partner could advertise that they also provide transcription, web updating and other tasks the virtual assistant handles. This way you’re bringing in business for each other.

The opportunities for service providers to benefit from online joint venture partnerships is tremendous. How are you going to leverage a partnership and build your business?