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We reached 60 million users & even partnered with competitors

Updated: Nov 24, 2023

I accidentally found myself down the partnerships rabbit hole recently at Streamline. Marketing channels can fade out over time and I'd rather develop skills in those that can never be obsolete.

The Work

1) Partnered with Super

Super makes website creation easy with Notion. They won the Golden Kitty award at Product Hunt and are quite renowned in the design world. I teamed up with them to craft a microsite using our free vector sets. This allows people to seamlessly copy and paste illustrations directly into Notion.

Our partnership received a lot of love from the community.

2) Partnered with Lucidchart and Lucidspark

Lucid has secured a place in the Forbes Cloud 100 List as one of the fastest-growing SaaS companies, boasting a valuation of $3 billion and a user base of 60 million. Thanks to our partnership, accessing Streamline is just a matter of two clicks in their app.

I wrote about our experience in Lucid's blog here and on their page.

Developer page includes my testimonial alongside friends from Slack and Headroom.

Partner page has more context:

Streamline was prominently featured as a partner in Lucid's press release, alongside other early partners such as Slack, Salesforce, and Notion.

They hosted us at their developer webinar featuring our tech lead

3) Partnered with our indirect competitors

This might be traditionally unheard of. The way I got this idea was by asking users in our post-purchase survey "What alternatives did you use before switching to Streamline" and saw a lot of users graduate to Streamline after using alternative products.

So, I reached out to them and struck a partnership!

Edit: Actually, partnering with even your direct competitors isn't all that uncommon. Adidas partnered with Bata while Puma did with Metro. It's wild and you should read about it!

The Takeaway

Partnerships take quite a while to get started, and there's a bit of talking back and forth that can happen. Sometimes, partnerships fizzle out.

You need to figure out how much time and effort a partner is willing to invest to make the partnership work. And do they have good enough reasons to do it?

Getting Mentored

When I was working out the partnership with Lucid and acting as the PM to build the extension, I asked for advice from Michael Pici (VP of Product, Revenue at Hubspot) to draw upon his experience.

I also had many video messages with Nick Lafferty, who used to lead Growth Marketing at Loom, to check if my decisions were on the right track. I always asked them questions like, "What am I missing?" or "Where could this decision go wrong?".

For the partnerships with our competitors and other partners (redacted), I continue to have regular calls every month with Hillary Miller (Head of Growth at Whimsical).

There are a lot of people who say nice things about me and are eager to watch my career grow but Hillary is the one making it a reality! It takes genuine effort to get into the weeds with someone and offer nuanced advice. And it is much harder to do that consistently every single month with no expectations in return! So, I cannot emphasize how important having a mentor is and I feel like I lucked out with her as mine!

What I've learned so far is that the goal of a partnership is to make sure everyone wins: you, the partner, your users and their users.

And if that combination matches, then no one is off limits.

Sure, there are templates, processes and better attribution mechanisms that can make the process better! Which you'll figure out over time. But the original creativity and the execution is where the heart of partnerships lies.

Thanks for reading!

Btw, I'm trying to better understand who my audience is. If you've got ten minutes, I would love to do a user research call:

- Khushi Lunkad



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