By Jessica Huie MBE, Founder of JH Public Relations

There are many different business lingo titles used to describe the coming together of two brands which share a synergy, with the ultimate aim of reaching a new audience, improving their service or purely to create PR ‘spin.’

If we focus purely on what we shall call PR partnerships, then we are talking about collaborating with likeminded brands which share your brand ethos and target market in order to reach a wider audience and create an interesting news worthy PR angle.

Working with small to medium sized businesses, one of the most common mistakes the entrepreneurs behind these brands make is limiting their own potential by thinking too small. Partnering is absolutely KEY in growing any business. As a small business we do this by standing on the shoulders of bigger and more established brands for mutual benefit.

If you want to partner with big brands then you have to think like them - and be sure that you can cater to the increased demand that your partnership will likely deliver!

So what do you have to offer as a small brand? The answer will be personal to you and your business, but it’s certainly not necessary to have deep pockets. Big brands will expect you to demonstrate your capability, so you’ll need tangible indicators of your company’s ability to create results, but as we are talking PR, perhaps the most important element of your pitch should be how you intend to shout about your partnership and the benefits it has or will deliver.

Which brands can you partner with for mutual benefit, and in turn generate press coverage from? Ask yourself the following questions and you’ll emerge with a list of target partnership brands.

• Which brands share your target market but are not your competitors?
• Which brands share your company ethos?
• Which brands are vocal about wanting to cater to your target audience?

In this global market, competitive advantage depends not only on what you can do, but also of equal importance, is whom you work with! Partnerships have become a critical part of any successful business strategy.

Lastly, remember that your currency could be free product, access to your database, and of course the all-important benefit of free positive publicity for the big brand.

Every one loves a story of David partnering with Goliath, and the media will do too. It makes the big boys looks good, so think big and get out there and capitalize on all of the partnership opportunities for your brand just waiting to happen!

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