Plugging in to Strategic Partnerships; What is the strategy behind it?
At the end of the year, I often receive the question, was this year beneficial and how did you do in your role at SmartHOTEL? Normally, my common answer is related to the number of new partnerships or new customers we have contracted. In my last conversation with a business partner I shared a different vision: The success of this year was very much depended on the success of the relationships I build.
Effective relationships and partnerships allowed SmartHOTEL to benefit from working together in many ways such as:
Adding value to our product and services
Accessing new markets that we were not active in (yet)
Making new integrations and enhancing brand reputation and exposure
Most of the times with no monetary invest or increase in workload
During the conversation, I was explaining in what way my role was contributing to the business the question was raised on what my interpretation of a strategic partnership was. That answer is very clear to me.
“A strategic partner is another business with whom you enter into an agreement that aims to help both of you achieve more success.”
Obviously, your organization must be partner friendly to attract partners that bring a certain quality and also a level of reputation. My focus is most of the times on “making friends” with those companies that are ‘happy and sunny’ and tend to attract more business, in order to have positive outcomes in discussions on the potential.
The more potential partners are attracted to SmartHOTEL, the greater the chance is of finding the one and forming a special partnership which will elevate both businesses to the next level. What I face is that the first conversations (dating) start with sharing ideas, showing interest and defining the opportunities, at that point you can easily select the potential that will really make the difference.
What are the most common outcomes of a new partnership with SmartHOTEL:
Acquiring new clients
Creating more geographic reach
Accessing new technologies
Adding shared resources
Combining products to create 1-stop-shops for clients
In my experience of having conversations with potential partners I always come to the question that can make or break the continuity of the process of the project:
“What is in it for both?”
Think about bees and flowers, the bees get the nectar they need to thrive from the flower and the flower gets to take advantage of the bee’s mobility to spread its pollen. There is a fair balance when it comes to the benefits that exist in this relationship.
For SmartHOTEL we have signed several new contracts related to new strategic partnerships but also many that are long lasting which we have strengthened even more. It is crucial to pay attention to your partners and also promote these partnerships to your clients. I am very proud of these partnerships and face the benefits of them every day. Ending up this 1-way conversation I would like to leave a personal note to all partners, potential partners and people that I have met, spoken or introduced during 2017:
It is me, on behalf of the SmartHOTEL team, other partners, and hotels that want to thank you for your loyalty, commitment, and hard work. It truly is partners like you who have made all the difference this past year!
Partner report 2017
We love hospitality
Together with partners worldwide we helped to realize the ultimate guest journey. SmartHOTEL delivers Smart & Simple hotel software and tailored services.
Some of our partner highlights are:
Global reseller partners
Together with our distribution partners, we are able to provide the best hospitality software solutions and services on global scale. Both integration partners and resellers have been added to the SmartHOTEL family.
Partner Portal Release
From connectivity to distribution partners, we are building towards the best hospitality network to serve hotels of all sizes. Whether you are looking for one of our existing partners, or you are interested in joining our partner network, https://smarthotel.nl/partners.
Oracle Platinum partnership
Our extensive partnership is based on strong and ever-evolving technology combined with our knowledge of the Hospitality Industry. This results in innovative hotel software solutions, tailored to the needs of the hotelier:
Channel Management for Hostels & Campuses
Offering flexibility in Online Distribution of beds, private rooms and dorms.
SmartCONNECT for PMS
Connecting any PMS system to Oracle OPERA ORS. Beneficial for chain hotel growth.
Booking Premier Partner
Booking.com Connectivity Partner Programme has four levels: Standard, Advanced, Premier and Premier Plus. As both our HQ's are located in the Netherlands we have had the opportunity to visit each other. ideating about Partner programs and solution products like Bookingsuite and our Channel Manager.
Thank you for being part of a wonderful year in Hospitality
- Derreck Weterings