Who should read this – SMB owners
Why should you read this – learn how to stretch your marketing money
Most small businesses have limited finances available for marketing campaigns. At the same time, one of their biggest challenges is building awareness in the marketplace and finding new customers. Collaboration is a marketing tool that every small business should be exploiting in order to fuel growth.
Here are the first steps to take to plan an effective campaign:
- What is your strategic plan? Effective planning begins with defining what you intend to achieve and how you are going to measure your success. Start from square one – what do we want to achieve? Are you interested in acquiring more clients or want to pump out a new product to existing clients? What are the features/benefits of what you want to market – specifically. Getting your objectives down on paper will better enable you to focus your efforts.
- Which other brands best reflect what your brand is all about? If you are going to collaborate with other small businesses or manufacturers, you should choose partners who compliment your brand. Customers have specific needs and desires and typically choose various brands that complement each other, regardless of whether they are looking for premium, contemporary or luxury brands.
- What value do you bring to the table? You need to be clear about what you have to offer potential collaboration partners. Keep in mind the products you carry, your client base, social media following, etc. Again, if you sit down and sketch out your strategy, you will begin to see that every company has something of value they can bring to the table.
- Who do you already have relationships with? Use your contacts to ferret out potential collaboration partners. Always keep in mind that it’s a two-way street. The more secure the relationships are between the partners, the more successful the collaboration.
- Get it down in writing. You don’t have to hire expensive lawyers to draft up a collaboration agreement. But you should sketch out what each of the collaborators is responsible for, and how you are mutually going to measure your success. The worst thing you could do is enter into a collaboration and then create ill will among the partners.
Again, start with your plan. Get it down on paper. Figure out what you bring to the table and then go after brands that compliment your own. Build trust and confidence within the partnerships and map out how each one of you are going to benefit from the plan.