With the onset of a crisis, many companies turned up in a difficult situation. The cost of products and services has increased, and the purchasing ability of people has fallen. Advertising becomes more expensive while bringing less effect. In such a situation, low-budget promotion methods, which include cross-marketing, is a great way out. It’s a great method for smaller businesses with a lower marketing budget.
What Is Cross-Marketing
Cross-marketing is a new, interesting marketing technology. Its essence is in the intersection of related services or goods in one PR-campaign jointly conducted by two (or more) companies.
The simplest example, familiar to all, is sets of goods in a supermarket, made upon the principle of “cheaper together”. Alcohol brands can produce sets of “whiskey + cola” or “gin + tonic” in collaboration with the manufacturer of sodas.
Another option is mini-gifts from partners: for example, a small sachet of a new stain remover can be attached to a pack of laundry detergent. Both companies benefit from this. The cost of such a share is modest, and customers are happy about the favorable offer. This approach is applicable in all areas of business.
The business industry is always looking for new ways and technologies, advertising, including becoming more non-standard, the market in search of fresh means of attracting customers.
A good example of cross-marketing was a New Year’s campaign held in one car salon: buying a certain brand of cars, all buyers received a certificate for free receipt of a chic Danish beauty fir-tree. This was carried out jointly with a company trading Danish firs.
As a result, all three parties were satisfied: a car-care center providing a free bonus to its customers; buyers who have received a chic gift for the new year; the company selling trees, having the opportunity to advertise its services through a car dealership and through the salon website.
Benefits of Cross-Marketing
- Reduced advertising costs due to co-marketing.
- Establishing long-term cooperation with various companies from other business areas.
- Active response from consumers, as they can get a double benefit.
- After the cross-promotion, the result is quickly visible.
- The effect of joint cross-shares is twice as large as that of shares individually.
- Expansion of the scope of sales of services or goods.
- Increase opportunities to promote your brand.
- Increase in the market reputation of the company conducting cross-marketing.
How to Plane Cross-Marketing Promotion
Step 1. Set goals
Before moving on to planning a particular promotion, set goals. Decide what is more important for you: attract new customers, expand sales, reduce the cost of attracting a customer or increase audience loyalty.
One of the goals may be to increase brand awareness. This is especially true for startups that are focused on rapid growth. For example, you created a mobile application, but the resources for promotion are very limited. Find a large brand whose customers will be interested in this option, and offer special conditions.
In addition, joint marketing may improve your reputation. For example, shoe stores with an exclusive partnership sell souvenirs of a charitable foundation, and the proceeds are sent to the charity afterward.
Such an action in itself does not increase the sales of the network, there is no financial benefit for the client. But it perfectly demonstrates the social responsibility of the brand and improves its reputation.
The specific goal will help choose the format of cooperation: tactical or strategic. Tactical cooperation is a short bright stock, limited in time. Strategic cooperation, on the contrary, is long-term, or even permanent.
Step 2. Choose a partner
To decide where to look for partners, it is important to consider two important points. First: the goods must be accompanying (for example, the salon of wedding dresses promotes a wedding photographer studio or the florist). It is necessary to analyze what the potential partner is doing and how your products or services complement each other.
Second, study the customers of this brand and try to understand why they became its adherents. Based on this data, think over how to adapt the product so that it is interesting for the audience of this particular partner. It is desirable that the goods or services of your company and partner companies belong to the same price category.
The principle of coincidence of price segments is not always respected when it comes to the bonus. But here it is better to avoid extremes: if you can not afford a little bit valuable gift or the partner has no samples, it is better not to give it at all.
You can choose another cooperation option: present a discount card of a partner store or a promotional code for a discount.
Step 3. Agreement for cooperation
Most often, a partner company is sought through personal contacts or contacts obtained at specialized events. But there is another way. You can take the initiative: find contacts on the Internet or on social networks.
Write briefly. The most important information is who you are, how your product can help the company’s customers, what is the benefit of future partnerships and how to contact you.
You can even make offers to large corporations while being a small company. The main thing is for the cooperation to be mutually beneficial.
Step 4. Control performance and KPI
To understand the effectiveness of a partnership, you need to establish for yourself the criteria for tracking goals. Track at least two KPIs: the growth of subscribers who use the service, and their outflow. Without clear guidelines, joint marketing and affiliate programs are not worth holding. It is still a business tool. It is very important to tie KPI to your goals.
There are actually no special complications during joint operations. It is only necessary to clearly formulate goals and KPIs, choose the right partner and specify the details of the cooperation.
Everyone can decide for themselves how to use this tool if they have a clear goal. This is the main advantage of cross-marketing. It brings excellent results when the goals of all those participating in the cross-marketing are thought out and coordinated.
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