How to Partner with Brands as an Interior Designer, Stager, or Workroom
The Kate Show | Episode 36
This episode is sponsored by My Design Assistant, virtual assistant services for interior designers: www.mydesignassistant.com
Whether you’re a new business owner in the home industry or a longtime entrepreneur looking to revitalize your pipeline, your business will grow from collaborating with other businesses and brands. In fact, marketing your business in this way is more lucrative than paid advertising and can also help bolster other areas of your marketing, such as growing your social media channels, expanding your mailing list, and increasing traffic to your website.
In this episode of The Kate Show, you’ll learn how to choose and approach a brand partner (script included!), how to determine the nature of the partnership, and what to offer your new audience as a collaborative partner.
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How much does it cost to partner with a brand?
Collaboration requires time rather than money, yet it can result in significant money earned in the end. (If your potential partner requires payment from you, it is no longer a collaborative relationship but an advertising agreement and should be decided upon accordingly.)
Regardless of how you approach a collaboration—one time gig or ongoing—it has the potential to grow both businesses and, most importantly, serve your mutual clients at a higher level.
How do I find the right brand or company for a collaboration?
I’ve partnered with more brands that I can count and each held a varying degree of success. The most successful collaborations were with companies or brands that met the following criteria:
We were not competitors
We shared the same target client (e.g. a home stager who partners with a realtor to reach homeowners / sellers)
We had mostly separate audiences (some crossover is natural)
We did not employ a contract or long term agreement (freewill promotion looks and feels best)
What if I don’t have an audience to share?
If you’re a new business owner or brand and relatively unheard of, don’t worry. When I was in this position, I did exactly what I’m about to share with you and was the major source of growth in both my audience and my business:
Approach a potential collaborative partner who meets the above criteria and say…
“I would like to offer added value to your audience by teaching them about XYZ. Based on my research, this would be relevant and helpful to them. In return, all I ask this that I am able to reference my business or services at the end.
“It would mean the world to me if a prestigious business like yours helped me get this message into the world. The people I would love to work with already trust you, and now I’m asking you let me give them more in a way that doesn’t put more tasks on your to do list.”
Always start this conversation with how your bigger partner can benefit. Show that you’ve taken time to research their audience and that you are familiar with their services or products.
Collaboration & partnership ideas for the home industry
Local high end decor boutiques
Golf club associations
Real estate brokers
House cleaning companies
Window treatment workrooms
Design centers (if wholesale)
Interior design associations (if wholesale)
Golf clubs and decor boutiques (if retail)
What should I do as a collaborator or partner?
Regardless of your niche within the home industry, you can offer any of the following as added value to your partner’s audience:
A one hour webinar on a relevant topic—with a link to your website at the end
A one hour in-person seminar or class—with a meal or refreshments to make time for conversation before / after the event
A hands-on tour of your design showroom, window treatment workroom, or staging warehouse—let your potential client see the inner workings of your business
Smaller but also effective options for collaboration include…
Introducing each other to your mailing lists by adding a “featured vendor” or “preferred partner” section to your email newsletter with a link to their website
Teaming up on Facebook LIve or IGTV
Sharing each other in Instagram stories or regular posts
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