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nurturing business relationshipsBuilding a strong business includes building strong relationships with other enterprises. How you nurture these relationships can mean the difference between mediocrity and excellence. Here are five simple ways to nurture your business relationships.

1. Send Gifts for the Whole Team

Sending gifts is great for anniversaries, holidays or big accomplishments like reaching certain sales goals. Gifts can include gift cards for your own products, candy or baked goods, new office appliances (copiers, printers, etc.) or certificates or plaques commemorating their support of your business. As you’re able, remember to give something to as many of that company’s team members as possible, not just the top executive.

2. Refer Clients

As you get people who come your way in need of other services, send them to some of your partners. If your agency deals mainly with small loans and you know someone looking for a travel insurance agency, refer them to the one you use for your business. When the agency clients come in who are specially referred by you, they realize that you thought highly enough of them to send them new business, and they will likely do the same for you.Business Referrals

3. Stop By With Snacks

It may not seem like a big deal, but just dropping by to check in with the receptionist can be a great way to keep your business on that company’s collective mind. Add a little bonus to the visit by dropping off some snacks the employees can share. Just be sure not to stop by during the busiest time for them so that you’re not getting in the way of daily business.

4. Be a Sponsor

Sponsoring a team-building or fundraising event for another business is a strong way to show that you value the relationship between the two companies. Sometimes sponsorship comes in the form of a direct donation to a cause; other times you may be a sponsor by providing needed materials for events (plastic bags, tents, clipboards, etc.).sponsored-by

5. Share Their Success

When a partner business reaches a milestone, completes a successful event or opens a new site, be one of the first entities to share that accomplishment on social media. By doing this, you are offering them extra publicity, spicing up the news feed on your own social media profile and encouraging them to do the same for you when the time comes.

In short, treat your partner businesses as you would like to be treated. If you support them, you help them grow into — or continue to be — a company that can support you.

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