SEO tends to be the primary focus when we talk about getting better ranking results and improving your online business strategy, but have you considered co-marketing alongside of these efforts? Small businesses often use co-marketing to collaborate with other businesses to achieve better, more productive, marketing, and this is especially true online. This collaboration can (and should) occur in similar industries. This strategy can also help to improve your SEO in the process.
According to BootSuite, one reason that this is beneficial is to help businesses that may not already have established or large audiences; this way they can actually work with others to pool their followers. By doing this everyone can increase the size of their audience. The result is that customers learn about relevant products and services, and businesses within this co-marketing collaboration can get access to new customers they wouldn’t have otherwise been able to reach.
5 Ways You Can Use Co-marketing
There are many different strategies for co-marketing, so this is definitely an area for you to be creative. While one of the most common forms of co-marketing is for two companies to develop content together and promote that content to a shared audience, this isn’t necessarily the only way. Below we list a few examples of the types of co-marketing that have been popular and are really good places to start when looking to co-market.
1. Content Development
As mentioned, content development is one of the most popular ways to co-market with another business. A HubSpot article offered the following examples: ebooks, webinars, templates, and blog posts, all of which can be great for collaborating. The goal is for both parties to share the downloads from the offer, and therefore get twice the leads that they normally would.
2. Video and Webinars
Increasingly, visual content like videos and webinars are becoming more popular for collaborative co-marketing. Audiences love visual content and will be happy to see your business teaming up with another to produce something that they will enjoy viewing.
If two or more businesses find that it is worthwhile, holding events can be a great way to gain access to leads and market multiple businesses at the same time. In order for this to work, all of the parties involved will have to contribute equally and the expenses need to be worth the results you are planning on getting. The good news is that if you are not solely responsible for the costs, this can be a very beneficial strategy.
While developing a larger content project can result in more leads, attention, and downloads, smaller blogging projects are also a good way to increase leads and develop a mutually beneficial relationship with another business. In this style of co-marketing, each business writes for their partners’ blogs and their partners write for their blog.
5. Extra: The Best Co-marketing Situation
To have the best situation when co-marketing, make sure that the business or businesses you are collaborating with have similar goals and interests. If one business has the goal of increasing their leads while the other is focused on sale conversions, it might be difficult to figure out what the best strategy for success will be. You also want to have some idea of how you are going to accomplish the goals you want to achieve—for example, be sure you get a sense of what kind of event your collaborator wants to have, or what kind of content they are looking to develop.
There are also a few questions that you might want to consider asking yourself before you dive-in to a co-marketing collaboration:
- Do they have a similar type of audience that our brand has?
- How many new leads am will we get from this particular collaboration?
- Will the invested time and energy with the other company be worth the time of our brand?
- Do they have some expertise that our team does not?
- Does their brand and name have a good reputation?
- Are the people enjoyable to work with?
Answering these questions will give you some insight into whether or not this co-marketing relationship will be worth your time. You want to make sure that this invested time and energy will be worthwhile. Always make sure you are happy and interested in collaborating with the business partner, just because they are “well known” does not necessarily mean that it will be worth your time.
Next: Promote Your Content
Once you have developed and produced the content for your co-marketing project, it is time to promote. Social media and email marketing are both great ways to get this content out to your existing audience and reach out to those unfamiliar with your brand. Be sure that in your agreement you discuss how your business (and theirs) should be tagged on social media every time the content is published. This will help to increase both of your followings and create more awareness of your brand’s name.
How Co-Marketing Can Affect SEO
Why is it important to consider co-marketing for your SEO? One of the most important aspects of co-marketing is content development, whether that is in the form or a webinar or an e-book, or a promotional piece for an event that you are holding. Content that is relevant and rich in keywords specific to your industry will help to give your business a boost on the rankings. Further, if your collaborator is posting links to your website, your brand name, and other content ties to your business, the more link building that is going on, and the more visitors you will have as a result.
In Conclusion: Measure and Follow Up
It is always good to see how these efforts work out (or don’t) after the fact. Be sure that you run necessary analytical analyses to see what kind of leads and site visitors this marketing strategy helped you gain. Once that’s taken care of, you definitely want to be sure to keep in touch with the business (and representatives) that you collaborated with. While it doesn’t generally make sense to do one project after another with the same business, there may be an opportunity to work together again in the future. These relationships are important to maintain, especially if the strategy was successful for both of your brands.
Co-marketing is absolutely a worthwhile strategy for building up your SEO and collaborating to get more followers for your brand. It is really important to pick a business that is going to provide a positive and worthwhile collaborative experience, and ultimately make sure you have some of the same end goals. Also remember that while this article talked about some of the strategies for co-marketing (such as blogging, webinars, events, and videos) these are by no means exhaustive, and there is a lot of room more creativity in co-marketing!
Do you have any ideas or examples of creative co-marketing that you have undertaken? Do you have any other experiences with co-marketing that you would like to share? Let us know in the comments section below.