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The importance of strategic alliances

merv_neal_1There’s an old saying that goes “If you want to go fast then go alone. If you want to go far then go with others.” I learned very early on in my business career that this is a fundamental principle if you want to grow your business.

One of the basic mistakes that folks make is that they form alliances with others that are not mutually beneficial. In other words it is good for one party but not the other. To use another old saying it has to be a “win win” situation. The best alliances are ones where each party can assist the other to grow their business. By default yours will then grow also.

The other thing to remember is to have a variety of alliances as not all of them will work all of the time. This is the same for marketing campaigns, working with clients, keeping staff etc. Always be ready for the next step. That’s what being strategic is all about. When done well a network of strategic alliances can be one of the best and cheapest marketing tools you will ever have.

Here are 5 types of alliances that you may like to consider.

1. People who attend your Laughter Club. People who attend your laughter club need to know what else it is that you do. Always have fliers on hand for attendees to take away and give to others. I always let them know of gigs that I’ve done recently to get them to know the breadth of the opportunities that Laughter Yoga (and you) has reach into.

2. Anyone in the health industry. Our health industry is struggling to keep up with the increasing number of patients and illnesses. Health professionals are very open to anyone or anything that can help them to help others get healthier. Make sure that you know the health benefits of Laughter Yoga and can talk their language. Remember that “Laughter can’t cure anything, but it can help to cure everything.”

3. Anyone in the education system. If you don’t have children yourself then the chances are that you know someone who does. Children of all ages are finding challenges with Social Media and the issues that it presents. Self-esteem is a factor in cyber bullying which of course Laughter Yoga can help with. Our “Very good very good yeah” chant is fundamental to building one’s self esteem.

4. Speakers Bureaus or workshop providers. Other opportunities lie with external providers of Laughter Yoga in conferences, workshops or programs. While Speaker’s Bureaus is a hard market to get into there are many workshop providers who are always on the lookout for engaging and entertaining speakers and presenters. Make sure that you have your “Killer BIO” ready. Having a short promotional video of you in action always helps Speakers Bureaus in particular to get you gigs at conferences.

5. Other Laughter Yoga buddies. And last but certainly not least is other Laughter Yoga folks. Too often we see them as competition instead of allies. Try to get in touch with as many as you can, determine their level of expertise, and then find out how you can help and support each other. You will then find that the Laughter Yoga pie will start to grow.

If you have any further questions regarding creating and keeping strategic alliances then please feel free to email me at mervneal@laughteryoga.org at anytime. Any recommendations for future topics are also appreciated.

Merv Neal is a Laughter Yoga Master Trainer and the CEO of Laughter Yoga Australia and New Zealand. He has successfully owned and operated his own businesses for more than 40 years. He has created a Laughter Yoga Business Training Program to help others to take Laughter Yoga to commercial organizations, and/or to create a Laughter Yoga business of their own.