business partnership shaking hands

How To Sell More, Easier With A Partnership Marketing Strategy

If you’re like most small business owners, your time is spent on the myriad of demands from the daily operations of your business. You might dream of expanding your market reach into new areas, but finding the time to create a promotion campaign for your company, is challenging when the phone keeps ringing and the meetings keep coming. That’s where partnership marketing can be invaluable. You already have relationships with people in businesses that can help your company grow and expand its reach. Why not take advantage of these opportunities.

What is Partnership Marketing?

Partnership marketing refers to the practice of enlisting the people and companies you know and already work with regularly to promote your products or services. It can be as simple as asking a blogger to review your product or as complex as working with another company in joint marketing, advertising and promotional efforts.

B2C Partnerships

In the consumer realm, partnership marketing might mean working with an “influencer”, a prominent blogger or social media star who focuses on a topic that compliments your business. For example, if you sell cooking equipment or are a wine distributor, you might work with a food blogger. These relationships are relatively easy to find and take minimal support. In most cases, letting the influencer try a product or service for free is generally all it takes to garner a review.

B2B Partnerships

In the business-to-business arena, partnership marketing requires a bit more work. However, these relationship can be just as beneficial…or even more so than B2C partnerships, since a reliable business will likely garner more trust than an individual blogger. B2B partnerships could involve working with a company that sells a complimentary product, for the benefit of both companies. Using the cooking equipment example, this might mean working with a food wholesaler to promote your restaurant equipment to coffee shops, restaurants and cafes. Affiliate marketing, where companies are paid a commission for sending customers via a website link to your business, is another form of B2B partnership marketing.

Work Smarter, Not Harder with Partnership Marketing

The idea of partnership marketing is to make your job easier, not harder, and to expose your product to markets that wouldn’t necessarily know about your product via your regular marketing channels. However, there are a few things you need to do to make this marketing strategy work well for you, especially in the area of B2B sales.

1. Support your partners with marketing materials. It’s not enough to say, “Go sell!” You need to provide your marketing partners with the collateral material they will need when someone asks them about your products. This can include print material, special promotions and even giveaways.

2. Consider financial incentives. It’s not wrong to offer a financial incentive to your marketing partners. In fact, this could be what keeps them motivated to promote your products. This incentive could mean reimbursing marketing expenditures or affiliate marketing commissions.

3. Communicate well and often. Good communication is crucial in making partnership marketing work well for you. Educating your partners on the benefits of your products, your product line and your promotions on a regular basis will not only keep your business in the forefront of their thoughts, but also make them effective marketers for you.

Partnership marketing, done well, can transform your business and beef up your bottom line. At the Pollock Marketing Group, we understand the importance of building and nurturing good relationships and can help you get the most from partner marketing without exhausting your valuable time and personnel. To learn more about how partnership marketing can work for you schedule a free consultation. We have years of experience in partner marketing that could change your bottom line.