As a business owner, you’re not really working in isolation. You can collaborate with the business community to increase business and make more sales if you think a little bit outside the box.

1. Work with People You Like – First, ensure that you choose business owners that you share values with, even if you’re competitive in some areas. You don’t want to work with someone you don’t trust and value as an ethical business owner.
2. Work with Complementary Products and Services – Find a business to work with that offers complementary products and services to yours. For example, if you sell baby items, you can work with a party planner and cross-promote each other.
3. Work with Similar Businesses – You can even work with businesses that are almost identical to yours. For example, if you’re a sole proprietor you can work with a larger business and help with their overflow, and vice versa.
4. Work with Influencers – You need people who have a big following, but they need you too. If you offer their audience good products and services that they need, you can make a deal with them such as a free product in exchange for mentions or even cash payments and affiliate deals.
5. Consider Working with Your Competition on Some Projects – There is even a place to work with your competition on projects. Meet your competitors, learn everything you can about them, and if possible you can also discuss the gaps in each of your businesses that need to be filled. You can even sponsor an industry event together if you want to.
6. Sponsor Industry Events – Want to be known as the “go-to” person in your industry? Then don’t shy away from industry events. Participate and sponsor events that get a lot of attention. This is going to help you get a lot of inside contacts, as well as show the world that you’re the expert.
7. Co-Market Your Services – If you have a service-based business, you can immediately expand your offerings by working with people who sell other services to the same or similar audiences. Work out together what you each want to offer, and tell clients that your colleague can handle aspects you can’t and vice versa.
8. Combine Products and Services to Create Special Packages – Another way to work with others is to make special packages together. For example, if you sell lipstick but not makeup remover, you can work with another company to make special packs. This can be accomplished with services as well.
Working with people rather than against them is a great way to ensure that businesses are lifted in your community or industry. Everyone can earn more money if you’re offering what the customers need and want.

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