Co-Marketing: Big Brands Share Lessons Small Business Can Use


In a “mini-podcast” from Forrester analyst Ryan Skinner, the use of branded content marketing was discussed. Examples included Target and Volkswagen.

Now while the analysis was about co-marketing and content marketing from a big brand perspective, there are several points that small businesses can use:

1. Share Your Audience

In the podcast, it was pointed out that several brands “recognized that they were competing for attention, but not on their offerings (one did marketing automation, another video hosting, a third webinar tools and so on). So they worked together. And it worked really, really well.”

It was also clear that not everyone – even the big brands – is taking this approach. As Skinner points out: “marketers just haven’t traditionally pursued these opportunities, but they should.”

Sharing your audience without competing directly with a co-marketing partner can be a strong sales tactic.

2. Co-Marketing Equals Extended Reach

Skinner interviewed Nick Edouard, co-founder of a technology vendor called LookbookHQ, who pointed out the true advantage of co-marketing – extending your reach.

It all comes down to doing it with someone else, or by yourself. As Edouard pointed out: “It has to do with reach, getting the most bang for the buck, and not just on the reach side of things, but also on the production side.”

By working with co-marketing partners you have the opportunity to reach audiences you both may be missing, and bringing more visitors to your sites.

3. Choose Your Partners Wisely and Set Mutual Expectations

While it’s great to co-market with one (or several) partners, you need to be sure to choose wisely. Make sure they are complimentaroy not just in business services but philosphoically as well.

Also, be sure to set expectations with your partners as to what you want to accomplish, and how quickly.

Is your goal increased visitors to your website? Awareness of your brand? Lead generation?

While most co-marketing campaigns are primarily focused on lead generation, be sure that’s the goal that you and your partners agree on.

4. Final Notes

There is a lot of great information in this eight minute podcast, so if you can take some time to listen here:

Forrester Blog – Podcast

While most of the information is from a “big brand” perspective, there are several things that apply directly to your small business.

And remember, an easy way to get started with co-marketing is by using the BoostSuite Article Exchange, which allows you to trade blog posts with your marketing partners in BoostSuite.

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