Just because you are a solo-preneur doesn’t mean you have to go at it alone. In fact, if you try to go at it alone, you are not setting yourself up for success and you’re doing yourself a huge disservice. When you open yourself up to the world with genuine curiosity, willingness to learn, and authentic motivation to collaborate, a whole new world of infinite possibilities awaits you!
I recommend cultivating 3 types of relationships.
The people you admire and who model similar values to yours. They are people you love to be around, who inspire you, give you confidence, spark your motivation, and challenge you to think differently. They can be people you know personally like your teacher, colleague, friend, or your neighbour. They can also be people you don’t necessary know but you admire from afar like an industry thought leader, political figure, author, or inspirational speaker. All great leaders and successful business people have many mentors in their circle – who help and support them on their journey. I encourage you to do the same.
Businesses and organizations that service the same type of client or target market as you do. Affiliating yourself with like-minded people who believe the same things you do and have similar service offerings (non-competitive) is essential to fast-tracking your business growth. There is enough work for everyone. Adopting an abundance mentality is the only way this type of relationship is going to be fruitful for both of you. Leveraging the community that each of you has not only allows you both to create a stronger collective offer but it provides added value to the client – it’s a win-win situation.
The main influencers of your target client. In other words, who are the people that are motivated to help your target audience find a solution to their problem? Align yourself with those people and nurture those relationships. If they understand your business value, believe you can solve the problem, like and trust you and have a referral mindset, they will turn out to be your greatest fan and vocal ambassador for your brand. (Your very own army of marketers!) You can show your appreciation by reciprocating referrals or providing a referral fee. Most people will be happy to recommend you if they like you, but if you don’t specifically ask for what you need, you won’t get it.
- Make a list of all of the people you admire. How can you incorporate their influence in your life on a day-to-day basis?
- Cultivate your business partners. Make a list of businesses you believe to be a good compliment to yours and determine which of them services the same target audience. Start discussions and brainstorm ways of working together for mutual benefit.
- Create a referral strategy. Who might be good referral partners for you? Start with the people who are your greatest fans already. Reach out to them and ask them if they know who specifically would benefit from your offering.
Solo-preneurs are never solo. Cultivate relationships and create your power circle.