This is a guest post by our partner, Referral Candy. 

You’ve probably heard of the saying, “no man is an island”.

This saying is both true in terms of business and life.

You need to collaborate with distributors, businesses and influencers to expand your customer base. You need to work with others to create promotional campaigns for your brand.

But how do you build partnerships? How do you find the best brands or businesses to work with? Here’s what you need to know:

Find top influencers using social media or networking events

How do you find the best brands or influencers to work with? Take a look at social media.

Use a bunch of brand-related keywords to find potential influencers or businesses that you can partner with. You can do the search on YouTube, Twitter, Pinterest or any other social media platform that interests you.

For example, if you’re selling gluten-free products, you can easily find brands or influencers in the industry through YouTube. Just search for “gluten-free recipes” on YouTube.

Here are the results:

If you’re a brick and mortar store that’s reliant on a local audience, you can attend networking events.

For example, if you’re in the local food industry, you could look for food-related events in your community. This way, you could reach out to potential customers and local businesses that you can collaborate with.

Find potential partners in your customer base

You don’t always need to go very far to find brands to work with. They might already be your customers. And if they’re already brand advocates, then that’s great!

If they already know and understand your business, then it’s easier to work with them.

For example, ASOS influencer marketing strategy involves influencers who are already advocates of their brand.

In their ASOS Insiders Community, they have a group of millennials who post their ASOS-inspired OOTDs (Outfit of the Day) to promote them on social media. From trendy outfits to maternity wear, their insiders community caters to fashion inspiration for every type of ASOS customer.

In short, find influencers and businesses who are already customers. You can do this by finding user-generated posts on social media. If it has a ton of likes and shares, then it’s probably by an influencer.

Determine if they’re the right fit for your brand

The ideal influencer should be in your niche. For example, if you’re in the makeup industry, then create a list of influencers that has a fanbase that will be interested in your product.

ColourPop Cosmetics collaborated with beauty influencer Jenn Im to create a new collection. The eye shadow was named “Jenn Ne Sais Quoi”, while two of her lip products were named “Jenneration X” and “Dohee”, which were based on Jenn’s Korean name.

The partnership was perfect for both parties because they had a common target market. ColourPop aimed to create beauty products and Jenn created great content – which are all aimed at their young female audience.

Another popular partnership is Uber X Spotify. This collaboration enabled customers to, take an Uber and connect their Spotify to the car’s radio and choose their favorite jams, while going on the road.

By looking at complementary services, Uber was able to deliver a more personalized experience for its users.
When choosing an influencer or brand to partner with, here are some guide questions you need to take note of:

  • Are you in the same niche?
  • Do you have the same target market?
  • Does their branding reflect your brand’s style?
  • Can they create quality content?
  • Is it easy to collaborate or communicate with them?
  • Will their audience be interested in your products and services?

Your answers will determine whether this influencer or brand is right for your brand.

Narrow down based on cost and metrics

After you’ve created a list of influencers, you can narrow down the list based on the cost of collaborating with the influencer or their metrics.

Of course, influencers with a ton of followers will probably charge more than micro-influencers. That said, you might want to look at your budget and try to determine if the cost of collaborating with a specific influencer and identify if it’s worth it.

Another way you can narrow down your list is based on metrics. Identify the follower count, domain authority and average number of shares on the businesses’ social media pages. This will give you an estimate on the amount of exposure you can get from the partnership.

Ready to find the perfect partner for your brand?

Finding the perfect partnerships for your brand is easy, if you know where to look.

Find influencers and businesses in your niche through social media. If you’re a brick and mortar store, you can attend networking events to meet businesses or customers that you can partner with.

You can also look at your customer base for brand advocates who are also influencers. Working with them will be a lot easier because they already know your brand or business.

After that, determine if they’re the right fit for your brand. Ideally, you should have the same target market, style and brand voice. They should also have the capability to create quality content to have a partnership that’s mutually beneficial.