A beginner’s guide to online cross-promotion– how to get started and how to choose the perfect partner

Digital marketing is all about growing your audience. This is primary goal for many brands, to expand their reach and tap into new, potentially lucrative new markets. You must always keep your target customer base in mind, but if you can find a partner that can give you access to a pocket of new, similar customers that you so far haven’t been able to reach, you could be onto a winner.

However, cross-promotion can be a difficult thing to do properly. Getting started is always tricky and time-consuming, as you need to pick your perfect partner and work/negotiate with them to plan a campaign. You may not always agree with each other on the best way to proceed, but you need to find common ground in order to create the best possible campaign. There are lots of examples of fantastically successful partnerships around, but how do you build one of your own?

If you’re looking to embark on a cross-promotional campaign for the first time, here are the essential tips you need to remember:

  • Narrow down your list of potential partners. Firstly, you should rule out all that compete with your brand, even in a small way. Look for non-competing brands that are known as innovators and influencers, or those that are outside your current niche.
  • Don’t forget the power of local. A local business can be the perfect partner for your campaign, especially if they have a loyal customer following in the specific region you want to target.
  • Make sure your choice of partner makes sense. You must be able to establish some sort of link between both brands, one which is obvious to the consumer. An obvious example is a partnership between a car brand and a fuel company, or a balloon seller and a party planning business.
  • Your campaign needs to be relevant to both sets of customers. This is something you and your new partner will need to spend time on, as both the content and tone of the campaign will need to appear relevant and natural to both your customers and your partner’s customers.
  • Always do your research. Not only do you want a partner that has a good number of customers and followers in the area you want to target, but they need to have a good reputation too. Make sure that there is nothing about their brand that you wouldn’t want to be affiliated with. This means doing lots of research and background checks before agreeing to team up.
  • There are lots of platforms and mediums perfect for cross-promotion. Email newsletters can be a good way to shine a spotlight on your partner’s products, while guest blogs are a very easy way to cross-promote as well as get fresh content on a website.

Do you have any examples of successful cross-promotion? Who did you team up with and how did you develop a strategy? Please feel free to share your experiences.