What is the best way for a small consulting group with Fortune 100 clients to build its client base?

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We are a regional, private, graduate school whose corporate education division has snagged big name clients. What is the best way for use to leverage these name brand clients to build our own client base?

-- Susan Vece (svece@lfgsm.edu), October 17, 2000


Brand name clients are going to give you integrity as long as you can get on the same page as the corporate education division. You can't use the goodwill they have created if you have not formed some sort of partnership with them, to enable you to capitalize on their efforts.

The benefit of such a partnership is that you leverage of the corporate education division and if you obtain clients that are better placed with them, you have an immediate system in which you make the referrals. Likewise, if they have clients that are suitable to you, this will encourage them to pass along appropriate leads for your client base.

Clearly you have to differentiate between what you offer and what the corporate education division offers but a client doesn't care about how you are internally organized or what your processes are to maximize an opportunity. Having done that, you should be able to share costs in marketing collateral and even resources such as creation of a distinctive website which highlights your collective branding.

Partnering is the way organizations are naturally progressing towards so you will only be imitating a trend already taking place in the corporate world.

(Note that Mark Zorro is a pseudonym I use to seperate my personal writings at FC from my career, business and family interests, since to do otherwise will severely compromise these interests.)

-- Mark Zorro (zorromark@consultant.com), October 18, 2000.

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