How startups can partner with companies like Google.

Startit Admin

Thursday 21 June 2018

How startups can partner with companies like Google.



  • Kristina Hahn, Director of Americas Partnerships Solutions & Innovation (Google) _@thahn44
  • Jason Leder, Partner Lead, VC’s & Startups (Google) _@jasonleder
  • Michael Mignano, Co-Founder & CEO at Anchor  _@mignano

There are various opportunities for startups to partner and work with large companies such as Google - beyond typical funding. Opportunities range from support/assistance on core products to custom partnerships.

At SXSW this year, some folks from Google came over to explain how to get their attention. Here are 5 takeaways and some tips and tricks that we happily share with you.

  1. First of all, use their platforms and products. Sounds logical but there’s a lot to gain there. There are many ways Google can help startups to accelerate. Google Play for example has an a/b testing feature to test your apps. Google Analytics is a great measuring tool. Think of using Google’s log-in as a customer onboarding option, and consider that distributing through Play could mean double digit conversion. There are many other ways that they can help: distribution, monetisation, engagement, assistance, user acquisition, infrastructure partner, training or testing your loading speed of your website.  But it is up to you to get in touch and ask.
  2. Another one is ‘Google my business’. You can create your website for free, with maps integration, or investigate Google ‘my business events’ to get a view on events organised for your sector or industry. Also check Google for entrepreneurs: it supports initiatives in 125 countries around the world.
  3. Use of case studies: Google has been around for some time, and they’re happy to share lots of data from case studies. Ask, and dig-in.
  4. is a new program by Google with, if you are accepted, business mentoring, ui/us reviews, and many more goodies.
  5. If you’re vlogging, or you want to make footage to put on Youtube, Google has built YouTube spaces: state of the art studios you can use for free.



If it is aligned with what you are building and there could be added value for your company: try out their freshly released new technology, tools, services and products and provide lots of feedback. They are testing the market too, as many of you are. In the same way that feedback makes you happy, it does them, too. Companies like Google actually want startups to be early adopters, give feedback and build new usercases. Believe me: if they roll out those API's they can't wait to see what startups build with them. Great usercases will be showcased on their websites or stores, and chances are you can get some extra marketing and visibility for your company and your product. So don't be shy to engage with all these platforms. Too many startups wait too long to apply and they miss out on lots of opportunities.

If you want to skip all that and get in touch directly you can always reach out via our community, talk to other startups who’ve done this before, leverage on networks of investors, entrepreneurs and Google people so you get intro'd. Warm intros always help.

If you use email: make it very specific as if you were to convince a VC to invite you for a talk: be short and clear, mention data: x users, x growth, include a pitchdeck of max 10 slides and a CTA that states something like: it would be great to work together because of xx.

A few weeks ago I asked our contacts at GAN to see if there was somebody working at Google who could help me build a closer partnership between our two companies. GAN introed me to the head of startup partnerships for Google Cloud, and only a few days later I was hacking a meeting room with him in their offices in Mountain View. He made a warm intro for me to the responsible for startup partnerships in Europe, and off we go.  Hopefully something great comes out of this, but at least I got to know the company a bit from the inside, I’ve got some insights in how they work and what they expect, and I myself have intro’ed a startup of ours to them.


So remember these companies are no so unreacheable as you might think. If you never shoot, you will never even have the chance to miss.

Greetz, Lode


Want to hear the panel session? Click here.
Make sure to read one of our other summerreads about SXSW. Click here!


Writen by @Luytterschaut