The Difference Between a Strategic Partner and a Vendor

The Difference Between a Strategic Partner and a Vendor 2 mins read

You enter the room. It’s a large conference room with a dark oak table and patterned flooring. Two individuals look up at you and stand to greet you. Will this be your team?


You exchange pleasantries and move to start discussing your business. The team sits, nodding their heads and listening. You get to a stopping point: any questions? They dive in head first.


They pull out a sheet of paper and start asking questions. Tell us how you got started. Where are you from? What makes your product different? Now sell me on it — what’s your elevator pitch?


We did our research and were wondering: Have you heard of Acme Co.? If so, how is your product/service better? You haven’t? Let’s evaluate this a bit and share what we found.


You start to realize…they came prepared. They’re interested in what you’re selling and are taking the time to listen to everything you have to say. To get to know you and your vision. That slight degree of angst that you walked into the room with starts to subside.


Strategic partners will ask questions. They will come prepared. You will leave with the feeling that they understand who you are, what you do and what you’re selling. Strategic partners play on a different field than normal vendors.


After all — It’s not a single transaction, it’s a relationship. That’s how it should be.

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