Transforming a startup into a successful business is a tall task at any time. Doing so while the world is still clawing its way out of pandemic and directly into political upheaval on a global level is downright Herculean. As if that wasn’t enough, you should try managing it as a woman when the world still hasn’t tackled such basics as wage equality. It can all feel like an uphill climb – the type of climb that has you pushing the stone of Sisyphus. It is hard to move ahead when you are constantly forced to re-litigate yesterday’s battles.
It is not just you. Career women are less likely to have strong networks. Developing a co-marketing strategy can help you develop that network. Historically, women tend to make better team players. That means they are better able to leverage the many benefits of corporate teamwork. If you feel embattled all the time, finding other people who share your circumstances can be a good way to fortify your confidence. There are a number of challenges and potential pitfalls inherent in co-branding and co-marketing. But there are also advantages that don’t get enough consideration. Besides the solidarity of women sticking together, here are 3 big reasons why you should formulate a co-marketing strategy.
Increase Your Visibility
One of the best things about subway ads is that they are seen by millions of people every week. By combining your marketing efforts with a non-competitor, you spread your reach to a new audience and increase your visibility. It is one of those situations where a rising tide really does lift all ships. When your marketing efforts are combined with those of another entrepreneur who has a complimentary product or service, you will open new markets as a result.
The key is to find complementary rather than competing products and services. If you make apparel, partner with someone who makes accessories such as handbags or jewelry. Customers who buy one will also buy the other. And seldom are all of those products made by the same company. If you make cowboy boots, partner with a company that makes genuine, western jeans. You can even do a more informal type of cross-marketing in the form of in-store recommendations. You can send your customers to the jeans shop for special discounts. And they can send their customers your way. Think of it as cross-linking in real life. Marketing partnerships have some real advantages over competitive marketing. Increased visibility is just one of them.
Marketing is expensive. And good marketing is even more expensive. You can afford really good marketing when you combine your marketing dollars with a co-marketing strategy. Alone, you might only be able to afford a quarter-page ad in a telephone directory. With a partner, you could both benefit from a full-page ad.
You see these types of partnerships all the time and might not recognize them. Some of the best carrier adverts feature specific mobile phones. When Apple makes an iPhone ad that flashes the Verizon logo at the end, both companies paid for the ad. Because it was more about the phone than the carrier, the bulk of the payment would come from Apple. But in other commercials, it is more about the carrier than the phone. In those cases, the carrier pays the lion’s share. Either way, carriers don’t make phones and smartphone makers don’t provide carrier services. Women can use their propensity to partner rather than compete as a competitive advantage.
When you partner with other businesswomen, you don’t have to take all the risks of a new marketing campaign by yourself. Because you are spending only half the money, you are only taking half the risk. You will have more resources to try other marketing strategies that were not open to you before. Television advertising will become more accessible. You can get a better feel for what does and doesn’t work. Having more options with less risk means finding the marketing strategy that is truly best for your business.
As a woman, you know how hard it is to fight for every inch of ground you gain in business. When you co-market with other women in business, you increase your visibility, reduce your costs, and decrease your risk.
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