While most marketing manuals seem to focus on social media and digital, forming partnership agreements with other SMEs might be a great way to grow your customer base
People forget the vital role partnership agreements can play in SMEs’ marketing efforts. If you don’t believe us, just remember that all evolution is dependent on the formation and success of collaborations, alliances and partnerships. You just have to observe the world around us to recognise this fact.
Collaborations, alliances and partnerships are prevalent everywhere we look. In nature, in trade, in business, in work and in our personal relationships. Animals survive in herds, flocks and troops. The best hunters are those which work in packs.
Similarly, countries and states have harnessed the advantages of forming unions and global trade agreements with each other.
Now, the development of the world wide web has led to the ultimate modern-day expression of the power of collaboration.
From its beginnings in 1989 with Tim Berners-Lee building an infrastructure allowing pages on a single website to be accessed by other computers, the number of websites today is estimated to exceed over one billion.
The internet is an alliance of unprecedented global proportion. Businesses, organisations and individuals all around the globe actively use websites daily. In the relatively short timeframe of just 30 years, our world has been transformed beyond recognition.
It has given marketers, entrepreneurs and website owners a golden opportunity to embrace the power of partnerships and use them to nurture the growth and success of their websites and businesses.
As so correctly pointed out by James Cristal in his excellent book The Complete Guide to Partnership Marketing the marketing form “has been simply swept under the marketing rug.” He argued that modern marketing books focus too much on digital, social, strategy and branding but consistently fail to address the value of partnership marketing.”
An extremely effective but as yet largely underused partnership marketing technique for marketers and website owners is direct collaborative advertising partnerships (DCAPs). But how does it work?
Let’s imagine we have two website owners. When using a DCAP, owner A would agree to place an advert on owner B’s website and vice versa, without any advertising fees being charged by either website owner. Two ads but no costs.
However, just like any effective partnership, the key challenge for successful DCAP agreements is for marketers and website owners to find appropriate matches.
A typical scenario might be an entrepreneur who has a wedding photography business with a new website and wants to get more targeted reach but with a relatively small budget.
Nearby, another entrepreneur with a florist business specialising in weddings also has a great website and also wants to expand on a limited budget.
These two entrepreneurs would be a perfect match for a basic DCAP agreement. They’re in the same industry and complement each other’s products and services. If they agree to place ads for each other’s products and services on their respective websites, they’d both instantly get exposure to each other’s traffic, jointly increase the reach and awareness of their websites and jointly benefit from each other’s wider marketing activities, without any additional marketing and advertising costs.
Visitors to the website for wedding photography are highly likely to click on an ad for wedding flowers because of the association and visitors to the wedding flowers website are highly likely to click on an ad on for wedding photography services.
And it doesn’t have to stop there. They could both then enter into further DCAP agreements with other businesses with websites in the wedding industry including cakes, catering, invitations, cars, attire and wedding venues.
And then they could expand beyond the wedding industry and quickly establish a national presence by partnering with more generic websites. All for no cost.
In conclusion, marketers, entrepreneurs and website owners can all take lessons from the world around us. Evolution is majorly dependent on the formation of successful collaborations, alliances and partnerships. And if you want to evolve your enterprise, partnership marketing may be a good way to go.This article comes courtesy of adoppo.com, the website offering a dedicated platform for marketers and website owners to meet, network and form DCAP agreements with each other on a global scale