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The Value of Co-marketing: A Partner Perspective

Whats the real value and solution to effectively co-marketing?

Today successful marketing through the indirect sales channel is a must for lots of vendors but also something many struggle with. However we think there is a rigorous process in terms of how they should engage and enable their partners and by knowing the steps they’re going to take, you can worth with, around and inside their framework to better fit their marketing aspirations and achieve your goals, ready to get started?

What is co-marketing?

HubSpot suggests that; “Co-marketing is when two companies collaborate on promotional efforts for a co-branded offer. In a co-marketing partnership, both companies promote a piece of content or product, and share the results of that promotion. By levering the relationship and reach of a partner, co-marketing campaigns are designed to deliver more leads, buzz, and awareness, with less work.”

Co-marketing can manifest itself in lots of different ways across every conceivable piece of content and channel, and should where possible always be a true collaboration between you and the vendor to create a message that suits both your needs and aspirations.

What are the benefits of co-marketing 

A successful co-marketing campaign should benefit both parties. co-marketing offers vendors the chance to reinforce their brand identity and provide a consistent experience across a large audience. For partners, it’s a very helpful boost in publicity and provision of assets.

Here are some of the benefits:

    • If you’re a small team you can remove the need for content creation! Much will be provided by the vendor who likely has great resources
    • It’s great for building relationships with vendors and other partners.
    • It offers an interesting insight into how marketing programs operate, giving you a better understanding for the future.
    • It gives you the chance to take content you do make in different directions and engage with different people.
    • It helps you ‘fill the gaps’ in your own skills or resources, as the vendor may have the budget or expertise that you don’t.

These days, it’s only getting harder to stand out online, which means partners are taking greater risks to get noticed – spending more for less visibility. Co-marketing mitigates some of this, representing a safer, but very effective solution.

How to pick your the right vendor to market with

 

Deciding which vendor to collaborate with will be crucial to the success of your co-marketing campaign. The partner vendor relationship is highly reliant on these interactions 

You’ve likely already identified a few vendors you want to work with, but before you approach them, consider the following:

    • Do you have the same target audience?
    • Will they have similar goals to you? (they may not be exactly the same, but think about whether each party’s objectives will be met)
    • How much effort are you willing to put into the campaign and what will you expect from them?
    • Is the end result going to be worth the effort?
    • What expertise can each of you bring to the table?
    • Does their brand have a good reputation?

    • Will their team be easy to work with?

The last question is really important – to the success of the campaign and for your teams well-being. Take it seriously as vendors can be liable to push the limits of their partner relationships to get ahead.

Vendors sometimes overlook the fact that these partnerships are not one-to-one or even one-to-many but rather many-to-many relationships.

Typically you’re likely to have 10 to 20 vendor relationships. Each vendor demands your mindshare, commitment and share of wallet. They each have their partner portal and co-marketing automation platform. As we’re sure you know having to log in to multiple platforms for each of the vendors you represent is a huge time sink when all you really want is to be running your business and serving your customers but there are some key ideas to getting the most out of your relationship.

Getting Co-marketing Results

From my experience, the results of this practice can generate a very high ROI. Key things to remember are:

    • Set dates for when the campaign will run and deadlines for when work needs to be completed.
    • Think about how best to communicate and share assets. As mentioned it’s likely the vendor will have a chosen platform or platforms to do this, work with them as best as possible and keep touching base regularly
    • Keep each other informed at every stage: when a file has been shared, when a post has been published, and of course the results of the campaign.
    • Be KPI driven in order to really show off your results to the vendor and see the most out of your relationship – assess:

      • Number of MQLs.

      • Number of SALs.

      • Number of campaigns planned.

      • Open Rates/Impressions/Clicks etc.

      • Potential Pipeline revenue created.

      • Weekly goal-setting/gap actions/weekly takeaways.

By learning the way vendors are likely to move their co-marketing agenda and ideals forward we hope you now have a better understanding of where you fit in all this! Primarily never forget that co-marketing is most definitely a symbiotic solution for you and the vendor. Its great that you get access to the materials and potential prospects you may not have had but be assured your contribution is what produces value at the end of the day. Should you need help making the most of your vendor led co-marketing campaigns please feel free to get in touch and talk about the services we can offer to help you stay relevant and competitive.