If you haven't invested in a startup-corporate partnership for your business, you could be missing out on valuable growth opportunities. In fact, many of the world's leading corporate stakeholders continually lean on startup-corporate partnerships to facilitate a greater understanding of the marketplace, build exciting and new products, maximize their understanding of target audiences, and more. It's this kind of innovation and forward-thinking that allowed Netflix to outpace Blockbuster in both convenience and cost!
Moreover, in today's increasingly competitive landscape, businesses rely on startups' speed and direction to outpace competitors. Most businesses are left with only one option — disrupt or be disrupted. However, is joining a startup-corporate partnership program really worth the investment?
In this article, we outline the top five benefits of a corporate partnership with innovative startups.
5 Ways Enterprises Benefit From Corporate Partnerships With Startups
1. Agility and Momentum
In many instances, startups are able to operate with more agility than corporate counterparts. This proves especially beneficial when corporate partners need to move quickly through product prototyping, development, and deployment. When corporates run the risk of being outpaced by industry competitors, the ability to think and act quickly is incredibly powerful. However, regardless if you're building a new product or surveying the landscape, it's important to focus on the process and not the end result.
"Just because you started with a vision doesn't mean that's what you're going to end up with," says Jason Saltzman, founder at Alley. "Agility means being prepared to change directions if things aren't working out. Some of the most successful businesses in the world started out as something completely different."
2. Access to Emerging Technology
The savviest startups typically have access to and utilize the latest technological advancements to produce next-generation products and services. With direct access to new and emerging technologies, corporates have the firepower needed to create industry-leading products and services of their own. Additionally, startups are able to think outside of the box and actualize seemingly unrealistic or insurmountable technological opportunities. It's this kind of risk-taking that has allowed new and emerging technologies such as virtual reality to succeed in the digital marketplace.
3. Better Customer Experience
The right startup will help your business deliver a better customer experience. More and more businesses are prioritizing the customer experience in their quest to dominate their respective industries. In fact, recent reports indicate that the customer experience is more important than the product or service itself.
"Startups have different usage patterns and make different assumptions about products," says Chad Fowler, Microsoft's General Manager, Developer Advocacy. "Their feedback makes products easier to use — what is a delightful usage for a startup is often food for end-users."
4. Access to New Markets and Verticals
When corporates want to disrupt new markets or verticals, partnering with a startup is the way to go. Why? Startups can provide the corporate partner with all the insider intelligence and insights needed to accelerate their go to market strategy. Think of it this way — you wouldn't join a recreational basketball league without sizing up the competition, understanding how the pointing system works, or researching the best kinds of basketball shoes. It's this kind of information that helps you crush the competition.
5. Product Validation
Lastly, corporate leaders can use startups as a sounding board. With the help of a leading startup, testing and validating products or services in a controlled environment allows corporates to build more robust and customer-oriented solutions. From design to development, startups can help you think objectively about your product or solution and help you to create solutions that truly align with customers' unique preferences. In most cases, the best approach is to slow down to go fast.
"With the pace of business today, the pressure has never been higher or the temptation greater to act just for the sake of moving things off your pending pile and appearing decisive," says Patrick J. McKenna, an internationally recognized author. "This kind of 'shoot from the hip' style may make us feel confident that we are getting somewhere. However, you are usually dealing with complex, multi-faceted issues that require more consideration."
The Best Startup-Corporate Partnership Program
Joining a startup-corporate partnership program will provide immediate and tangible enhancements to your enterprise. If you haven't considered partnering with an innovative startup, your business could be quickly outpaced by competitors. There are hundreds of startup-corporate programs to choose from and finding the "right" fit is a critical component of corporate innovation success.
RocketSpace offers a suite of corporate innovation programs designed to help global brands connect with leading startups. From disruptive technology identification to open innovation strategy and landscape discovery, RocketSpace's corporate innovation services transform businesses and industry from the outside-in. RocketSpace is the right program to catalyze your business transformation.