Discover how business.connected can help you collaborate and work with other business owners online
Business.connected in partnership with Vodafone is an extensive online training programme that will help 150,000 small businesses boost their digital skills. The free 12-month initiative - delivered exclusively online and consisting of workshops, webinars and e-learning modules - will empower businesses to kickstart digital change, adopt new technology, and stay safe online.
Collaboration is one of the four core topics of the programme and when done correctly enables a business to thrive. Vodafone recently commissioned market research with Atomik Research which found that Britain’s small-and-medium-sized business (SME) community is being held back by a lack of digital skills which is why learning to collaborate with others online is so important.
Rhea Freeman, digital expert and business.connected adviser, shares how you can collaborate with others effectively online, providing three simple steps you can follow. She also draws on her own experience of running her social media consultancy and collaborations she has taken part in as a business owner.
Why collaboration is key as a small business owner
Collaboration is an incredibly effective way to promote your business and it doesn’t have to cost you anything if you find the right people. When you collaborate with others you can expand your online reach whether it’s through a competition, live workshop, podcast or blog.
For a business owner who is new to collaboration, you should think about what value it would add to your audience/customer base and work back from there.
Here are my key three steps to take when collaborating online with other business owners:
1.Do your research
You want to make sure your core values match those of who you are collaborating with. Think about what the core values are of your business and find other businesses that share or have similar values.
2. Set realistic expectations
Be clear in what you expect from the other business or influencer you are collaborating with and what they can expect in return from you. Communicate what objectives you have for the particular collaboration and what you are hoping to gain from it. You should take into account your own work schedule and what you think you will be able to deliver in the time you have available.
If you can manage expectations effectively, collaboration will be better for everyone involved.
3. Make a plan
Set out a plan for how your collaboration is going to work. For example, if you have agreed to run a competition together: how is this going to marketed? What assets do you need? How many times are both of you going to promote the competition on social media? How do people find out about the competition?
Since the pandemic, with most businesses now working online, collaboration can not only benefit your business and your brand reach but also allows you to network online, providing an opportunity to make new connections.
If collaboration is done right, everybody wins.
Looking for further digital support?
Sign up to business.connected today for support with digital security, collaborating with others online, websites, e-commerce and connectivity.
Discover how you can collaborate online using Microsoft Office 365 with business.connected e-learning.