Are you an e-commerce merchant struggling to make meaningful partnerships and create compelling content? 🤔
We feel you, and that's why we're excited to introduce our AMA with Nick Penev.
As Partnership Manager at Hellotax, Co-founder of XTREME POWER brands, and a dedicated remote-work advocate, Nick has years of experience under his belt and is a true legend in the land. Plus, he's got a decent lineup of accomplishments to back it up!
🏗️ He’s successfully built over 20 private-label supplement brands 📈 Grown his partnership agency to over 30 clients and 1K+ partners 💰 Achieved an impressive €5M revenue in 2015 (with only a €5k initial investment in 2010 🤯).
So if you're ready to unlock the secrets of content and partnership success from an e-commerce powerhouse, you should read this exclusive AMA session with Nick Penev 🚀
🗣️: What are some benefits of forming partnerships in eCommerce?
💬 Nick: Partnerships in eCommerce can bring several benefits: Such as shared resources and expertise. You use your partner audience to expand. Cost for co-marketing is $0, you pay by sharing as well.
Expanded customer reach: You promote your product or service to the partner audience who have never heard of you. Cost for co-marketing is $0, you pay by sharing as well.
Brand exposure and PR: You use your partner audience to spread the world for your brand.Again ... cost is $0, you need to the same for them.
Reduced costs: You save ton of mine for paid marketing.
🗣️: Can you provide some examples of successful eCommerce partnerships?
💬 Nick: Some examples of successful eCommerce partnerships are: Amazon and Whole FoodsNike and AmazonShopify and FacebookTarget and ShiptMillions of other partnerships like eCommerce agency and 3PLs, Tax agencies and Amazon agencies, ecom VAT provider and ecom accounting. There are unlimited examples, if you share the same audience but you are not competitor, you can be a partner.
🗣️: How do you find the right partner for your eCommerce business?
💬 Nick: To find the right partner for your eCommerce business, you can consider factors such as complementary products or services, shared values, aligned target audience, The best platforms to find them are Linkedin and I've used Linked Helper to grow my network. I highly recommend to check it out.
I've recommended it to 200+ companies to use it. Another options are online events and industry events which are more expensive and I've attend only one in-person event so you can do everything online.
🗣️: How to form a relevant offer to get more consent in partnership?
💬 Nick: The best way is by gathering feedback from your partners for the relevant needs of their clients.Multiple clients of mine and myself have developed new products or services for clients and partners after listening to pain-point by a partner who gave the idea about it.That's why I have a rule with partnerships. I never make assumptions and meet whoever is willing to meet me as you never know what would be the outcome.
🗣️: In my opinion, the content itself decides a lot nowadays, so my questions will be about it: What are some common mistakes that eCommerce businesses make when creating content?
💬 Nick: They think too much about it. Don't waste time, start doing it. You are not gonna get it right the first time. You learn by making mistakes. The best way is to start creating content and optimize after you get feedback and results from it.
🗣️: What are some tips for creating effective email marketing content for eCommerce?
Subscribe to multiple newsletters and see what others are doing.
Keep it simply, as short as possible and avoid too many CTAs as it is a distraction.
Implement what you like and test.
Measure open rates/ctr and keep on chaning and testing all the time.
Test with your audience and with your partners.
Here are some other ways of creating content as well.
SEO/Blog-exchanges - It is the most expensive and the best in the long-term, you need quality copywriters who can create interesting topics which could be published by partners withhigher domain ranking 50+. You produce the content and partners distribute it. Of course, you should do the same for them as well.
Social posts - Keep it short and sweet, post daily, casually and use humor .... tag close partners. Look what others are doing and use what works ... you are not gonna reinvent the wheel.
🗣️: How do you ensure that your content is relevant to your target audience?
💬 Nick: You test different content/formats/CTA and measure the results to see what works and what doesn't.Last but not the least, use ChatGPT to help with content creation as it saves a lot of time and money. There are thousands of other tools as well so make sure that you help yourself with them.
Here is the activity on my profile for a week ... few post ... 12k impressions ... cost $0 😜
🗣️: What are some risks associated with forming partnerships in eCommerce?
💬 Nick: The only risk in partnerships is if you think too much about. We use the shotgun approach at the beginning. We form a lot of partnerships and evaluate them based on the outcome. From 100 partners you'll end up working closely with only 20% of them. So judge them by what they do , not what they promise or how big they are.
🗣️: What are some best practices for creating eCommerce content for customer service training materials?
💬 Nick: If your questions is for cross-selling between partners. Then your partner is going to do that for you team and vice versa. We are doing tutorial, Q and A sessions, campaigns and other form of edu-content to cross-educate their teams. If you are question is strictly for CS, I won't be able to help that but I have a lot of partners who specilize in CS and VA services which provide such support for my partners.
🗣️: How do you create effective eCommerce content for chatbots?
💬 Nick: No idea but I have partners who specialize in that. Connect with me on Linkedin and I'll intro you.
🗣️: What should we consider before entering into a partnership?
💬 Nick: Like I mentioned to some of the previous question, partnerships is more about action than planning 🙂
The first thing to do is check your competitors and who their partners are and what they do with them, that would give you an idea on what they do. Try to connect with their partners and start working on some partner activities to get the word across you to their audience. Like joint webinars,social or email swaps, joint workshops etc. Make sure that you always make the first step and take the lead.
🗣️: How can we manage the risks associated with partnerships?
💬 Nick: The only risk with partnership is when you don't do them 😃
Some partners will be reliable and will lead to quality and long-term relationships and some will be waste of time. So the only risk is associated with time-wasting which is part of the game so for that I've developed a step-by-step screening with partners. I suggest certain partner steps and based on how the partner reacts, we move to the next one. If they don't make the effort to go to 1st base, we never reach 4th base. On average, you need 100 partners to find 20 quality ones. The more you meet, the better you become managing them.
🗣️: Do you have some tips for negotiating a successful partnership in eCommerce?
💬 Nick: I never talk about money when we discuss partnerships.We share what we do and we start with giving value to each other and then once we see the overlap, the negotiating is much easier and then we outline the commercial side.I tell everyone that I avoid agreements like the plague as they don't accomplish anything but some paperwork so I judge my partners by what we do and this is something I tell them in the first meeting.
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