What kinds of things might you need? It all depends on the type of business you have and your existing resources. You may not even realize at the moment what it is that you need. Consider the following list. Would anything on the list be beneficial to you?
- Some type of products (not necessarily for you to sell, but to use in production, marketing, administration, etc.)
- Services (ditto the above)
- Storage space
- Administrative support
- Accounting support
- Promotion of your business to their customers and prospects (maybe in return for revenue sharing)
- Providing you a high-visibility recommendation or testimonial
- Their “beta-testing” of your product/service
- Customer lists of your kind of prospects (this is the answer to the question, “Who already has the kind of customers that I’m targeting, and how can I make it worth their while to give me access to them as well? It works when you aren’t directly competitive with each other.)
- Any kind of know-how that you lack
- Money (loan, grant, for equity, etc.)
- Introductions to people who can help you (this can be incredibly valuable – it can give you instant credibility)
The average person looks at that list and says, “Sure, it would be nice to have some of those things, but I can’t afford to pay for them.”
First of all, realize that you don’t necessarily have to OWN it. You just need the benefits of it. How?
- Yes, you could buy it if you can; but you can also…
- Rent or lease it
- Trade/barter for it something that you have of similar value that the other part wants
- Borrow it for a period of time
- Ask the owner to put it to work on your behalf
It’s a new way of thinking isn’t it? But take it to the really magical next-step-up that can really set you apart as a business person and be the difference in success or not: paying for something is but one way to get the benefits of something. For example:
- You could publicly credit the owner for contributing its use to you (lots of companies will do all kinds of things just for exposure)
- In return for using it, you could trade something you have that the other party wants and doesn’t have (like anything on the above list)
- You could share related aspects of your revenue with the owner of it on some negotiated basis
- You could solve a problem for the owner of it (mutual back-scratching)
- You could improve the “thing” for the owner, then let him/her use the improved version
You can do this! Just ask the other party outright what they would accept in return for letting you use what it is that they have that you need, then negotiate from there. You just might be able to provide what they need, which could include finding a third party who has what they need and do a three-way swap of values.
Thinking in this manner is a habit. Try it for a while and you’ll find that your thoughts automatically going in that direction the next time you need something that you don’t have.
“Why You Usually See Three-Tiered Service Pricing”