When considering your business and how to add value to something you believe is valuable to others take a step back and think about what it is you are doing. Does this new addition really add value that your target audience will appreciate or will you be lessening your brand and image by bringing on this particular thing. Whether taking on a partner or cross promoting with another company will they care about your image and good name as much as you do? Do they know what is important to you when it comes to your business? If all you care about is a numbers game and drawing more people to you then partnering with anyone out there on the Internet without looking into their name or product isn't a concern for you. However if you are trying to cultivate your image so that your customers know you care about each and every one of them then it is important to make sure your new team member is trying to do the same thing. Yes we all need to get our brand out there but we shouldn't do it if it will cost us our name that we have worked at creating.
Last night I went to a theater production that I am going to keep nameless. It was a professional production that completely dropped the ball as far as I am concerned. Instead of working together, whenever the entire cast was singing you couldn't understand the words. Each individual person was on the stage for themselves and not the good of the show. People bumped into set pieces, wardrobes were malfunctioning – several wigs fell off during dance numbers. I personally would be embarrassed to have my name associated with a show that was such a mess. and this coming from a person who can think a group of 5th and 6th graders put on a magical performance. By not doing their job 100% last night the cast and crew sullied the production and the people who worked so hard to get it on Broadway in NYC and then take it traveling around the country. It was just another night on the stage for them, another show to get through instead of put their heart and soul into the performance. I would never recommend this show to anyone which means they tarnished the brand and there is nothing they can do to change that for me now.
Obviously you don’t want to associate yourself with a company or person who doesn't care enough to love their own brand and it was obvious the actor and actresses on stage last night did not. To find the right partner for yourself whether it is a one off deal or something you hope to continue into the future make sure it is the right decision for you. Are they the type of person or company that will do everything possible to make sure the customer or client is happy? Do they value customer service and quality over quantity? Does what they have to offer better your brand or are you doing them more of a service then they are doing for you? Make sure you are each offering something tangible to the other even if it is just name exposure make sure both sides are trying to achieve the same goal. Word of mouth from happy customers and clients who love their product and feel the two complimented each other. Even if you think all I am doing is hiring a receptionist does that person convey the message I want to be sending to anyone who calls they are the new “face” of your business the first person that everyone comes in contact with make sure that receptionist knows how important their work is to your company.