Two philosophies I follow:
- It takes years to establish trust and seconds to break it.
- The more value/money you add to others, the more value/money others ought to add to you.
The key is identifying trusted partners that understand these concepts. My experience has been that when there’s no money on the table, all parties see eye to eye. It’s only when you start to make a lot of money you discover the true value in your partnerships.
Today brought disappointment in a referring partnership I have. This partner and I are making some really good money together – and its at an exponential growth.
It came to my attention that an account was getting credited to Direct Response – the partner gave me his word. I then executed on my part of the deal and got the lead to close , you know, Glen Gary/Glen Ross ABC style:
Shortly after I received an email from my referring partner that he was taking the deal and I was getting cut out.
WTF! My partner gave me his word that this was a referral attached to our account, I then performed, got the lead to close, and he switched out on me. In situations like this I always like to give the other party the benefit of the doubt, so I reached out for clarification.
My partner referred back to our “contract.” Sure, I know that an oral amendment does not usurp a written contract, however this was down right wrong. I spent time working with the referral and got him to sign on the line in which was dotted – and only followed through due to my partners word that the account was mine.
Then my partner went into a harangue about how I’m too aggressive and if I’d like he’d gladly terminate our relationship – which I understood as him taking all of the money and me getting outed. Nice!
Now I’m not going to quote my partner or reveal his name, as now I know he is a man that follows contracts to the letter of the law (when it’s convenient for him of course) – there’s an MNDA in place.
The irony is that when I probed the referral further, it came to my attention that they actually got to my partner through an advertisement we’re running. My referring partner conveniently forgot to ask the lead how he found out about my partner.
Which begs the question: how many other leads did this partner “forget” to ask where they came from? After all, we have several top commercial intent keywords on lock organically – haha, we even rank at the top of the search engines for his name/company’s name. Surely there’s more traffic coming from our ads – I’ve yet to see one convert though.
Over the past few months I’ve literally had this partner’s competitors kicking down my doors for our business. Out of respect for the longevity of the relationship, I politely turned them away.
Now I’m stuck here on a Friday night thinking to myself, what should I do? This partnership has been going really well so far, but I just caught him slipping. There’s a really good opportunity for us to make millions together – but is it worth it? What are your thoughts?