The Hunt for a Business Partner

I’ve been running my own business – pretty much by myself – since 2001. After 10 years I’m weary from going it alone professionally. I’m typing up my thoughts on finding a business partner, visions I have for moving forward, and things I’d like to accomplish with a biz partner. Right now I’m seeing out contacts and friends in my network that have been down this path before, and maybe gain a bit of advice or direction in the process.

The best was I know to find a partner is to ‘date’ first.  I’d love to collaborate on a few projects to see about finding the right person (or people) to grow a business with.  Best case, we both find business partners and grow a company together. Worst case, we finish a project and move on our separate ways.  I don’t have a project right for a partner now, but I’d like to see about working together with someone to find it.  While I’m currently working on projects, it’s not the type of thing that I want to move forward with a partner on.  So we build it from scratch, together, as a new business endeavor.

Here’s the thing, I hit the wall and realized I can’t scale very well.  When I’m working on client projects, I am heads-down and can’t really take the time to properly solicit and cultivate new clients.  Leads thrown my way collect dust because I just can’t work on all the things that are needed to land new clients (in-person networking, pitches, proposals, contracts, etc.) while I’m trying to produce work for clients and meet deadlines.  One of my bigger fears has been actually landing multiple clients at the same time (which has happened more than once) because the project ramp-up is so intense and consumes so much of my time.  Another issue I’ve been having is landing the wrong type of clients, ones that don’t see the whole picture online and tend to want to focus exclusively on SEO, PR, PPC or paid lead generation services that don’t work on their own.  It’s frustrating.

So what type of business do I aspire to? Maybe something like Red TettemerGMD StudiosCampfireBrains on Fire or The Archer Group (you can see what I like and aspire to is all over the map literally and functionally).  These are the agencies I’m following from afar and admire from the outside. Since it is highly unlikely any of them have me on their radar to grab me up, I’m looking to build my own.  Think technology, interactive, immersive, digital – edgy. Right now I want to be more than just ME.  I’m pretty damn sure I’m not employable, I’ve been an entrepreneur and business owner way too long. I’m a storyteller and technology geek and the two combined make a mighty powerful platform for clients.  I love the idea of crafting content to educate and inspire my client’s own customers to not only buy the product, but evangelize to their friends and family to do the same.  I don’t like selling and I don’t like for my clients to have to ‘sell’.  I want to help make my clients memorable.  Not just at the point of sale, but memorable within their customers entire life.  I don’t know what type of work specifically that is called, or what type of ‘agency’ we would be labeled as, it’s just what I see the future (my future specifically) as. [Read more…]