Maybe you're getting ready to list your company on the business-for-sale marketplace.
Or maybe you're just interested in making your company more visible for possible acquisition offers. Either way, you're facing the harsh reality of today's business marketplace: Attracting business acquirers is a lot more difficult than it used to be.
There is currently a glut of businesses available for acquisition. So to raise your company's visibility, you'll need to resort to every trick in the book – and maybe even a few new ones. Hiring a business broker has advantages, but to get adequate exposure you'll need to drive the process.
One of the best things you can do to raise your company's profile is to participate in your industry's trade association. Trade associations create opportunities for networking. But they also make it possible for you to list your company in the trade association directories that brokers and buyers use to identify acquisition targets.
Trade Association Basics
Trade associations or trade groups exist for most business industries. If you can't locate a trade association for your exact business model, there's a good chance you can find one that is closely related to your field of expertise. Although trade associations offer a variety of benefits for their members, one of their primary functions is to encourage networking and collaboration within the industry. When it comes to business acquisitions, many acquirers first stop is the trade association and the directory that lists its affiliated companies.
Advantages of Trade Association Directory Listings
- Centralized database. Trade association directories are central repositories for information about the movers and shakers in the industry. Using a single resource, acquirers can initiate a search for acquisition targets.
- Geographic reach. Trade association directories include listings for companies throughout the U.S., making it easier for your listing to be seen by a geographically diverse group of acquirers.
- Established industry presence. Right or wrong, affiliation with a trade association gives your company an established industry presence, even though most trade association don't vet the businesses that are listed in their association directory.
- Company vitals. Trade association directories can include different types of information about your company. Some simply list your company name and contact information, while others may include a brief description. Check with your trade association to find out what can and can't be included in your listing.