What is Partner Marketing & Why Do You Need It? 

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Partner marketing helps you expand your business at very little cost and effort. Partnerships evolve, just like any other marketing strategy. This article will define partner marketing and explain how you might benefit from it, by simply adding an affiliate partner program to your business. 

We’ll also go over the many types of marketing partnerships to help you decide which one is right for you. 

You can implement partner marketing to grow your company and brand or become a partner yourself, as long as you adhere to the best practices in this article.

What exactly is partner marketing?

Partner marketing is a collaboration between two companies or a business and an individual, such as an opinion leader or an influencer. This cooperation’s primary goal is to achieve both sides’ essential goals.

What are these goals? 

Partners are frequently viewed as supporters of the businesses with which they collaborate. All organizations want this trusted voice to engage with current and new customers. Partnering helps raise brand awareness and visibility, improve lead generation, and reach a larger audience.

Marketing partnerships vs. business partnerships

There is no substantial distinction between marketing and business partnerships at their heart. It still suggests the two parties are working together. However, various characteristics distinguish these two words.

To begin with, a business partnership is usually a legally binding arrangement between two or more businesses or people. Partnerships are classified as general, limited, and limited liability. They all fully recognize partnerships in the states where they do business.

On the other hand, marketing partnerships can be reached informally, circumventing the legal process. In other words, a marketing partnership is a collaboration in marketing campaigns that may or may not include a legal component.

Taxation is another significant feature of business partnerships. Each partner is taxed on the earnings generated by the partnership. Individual partners are taxed on their portion of the profit or loss. This is not always the case in marketing partnerships. In affiliate partnerships, for example, affiliates are responsible for filing income tax returns. If we regard content collaborations as partnerships, no taxes are paid because brand visibility is not always monetary.

The most significant distinction between business and marketing partnerships is the goal, duration, and level of legal or contractual obligations. Business partnerships try to make money for both parties. On the other hand, marketing partnerships can be short-term and focus on long-term goals that don’t pay off right away, like branding.

The goal of marketing partnerships

Partner marketing is an effective strategy for both parties to pool their resources and reach a larger audience. The causes for this differ from instance to instance. Some companies struggle to dedicate enough resources to achieve explosive expansion, while others partner to get the missing skills. 

So, for what reason do businesses form partnerships?

The business world, like the rest of the globe, is evolving. Businesses are increasingly admitting partnerships, and joint marketing campaigns are needed to react to these rapid changes. The most obvious reason for forming a partnership is to make up for a lack of financial resources, performance or even products and services.

The primary advantages of partner marketing

The primary benefit of partner marketing is financial gain. Businesses partner forces to gain and boost sales. However, we recommend thinking beyond monetary goals when considering marketing partnerships.

Well-established or rapidly rising businesses entail gaining a larger market share or improving sales performance. Partnerships also give smaller businesses a chance to stand out in the industries where they work or want to work.

Most significantly, partnerships can produce unique or additional customer value by combining the resources and skills of different firms or individuals. This includes developing new innovative solutions and products, delivering better and faster service, and even assisting the entire sector in its development.

Many SaaS startups, for example, prioritize product development and growth over service delivery. In this case, intermediaries can often do these things better than the manufacturer, which increases the product’s overall value for the customer.

Marketing partnerships expand a business’s reach and influence the location and distribution of its products. Many enterprises begin in their hometowns. As a result, working together is a great way to get new customers in new market areas.

Last but not least, marketing collaboration is cost-effective. Fruitful partnerships bring together a pool of new ideas and abilities, allowing you to save money on third-party services. Also, most partnerships, like affiliate or influencer marketing, work on a pay-per-performance basis, meaning you only pay for results.

Marketing partnership types

Partner marketing is a broad term that incorporates a number of trends, which we can also call strategies. Choosing the correct one for your organization is critical to the success of your marketing relationship. So, while all of this has been demonstrated to be advantageous, focus on the value this collaboration brings to your clients and brand.

Let’s have a look at the list to see what options you have.

Affiliate marketing

Affiliate marketing is a business arrangement in which a firm rewards its associates, known as affiliates, for promoting and selling the company’s products. This is a pay-per-performance arrangement, which means the partner is compensated when the desired activity occurs — impressions, clicks, or sales. Bloggers, influencers, agencies, email marketers, PPC affiliates, and coupon and cashback websites are all common types of affiliate partners.

Distribution collaboration

A distribution partnership is formed when one brand desires to harness another brand’s massive distribution network in exchange for a fee. These products are typically aimed at the same audience.

Sponsorships

Sponsorships are one of the oldest types of marketing partnerships. As a result, there is a wide range of sponsorship types. However, one thing they all have in common is that a sponsor openly promotes the brand.

In exchange for a product endorsement, a brand might give money to a YouTuber or a sports event that gets a lot of views.

The brand and the sponsor generate value in each of these instances. However, in the event of negative publicity, both parties suffer. Because of its broad range of applications, sponsorship marketing can be integrated with other types of partnership marketing, such as product placement.

Co-branding

This type of marketing collaboration involves two brands collaborating on one new or updated product to bring added value to the customer. 

Licensing

A licensing relationship occurs when one firm permits another to manufacture and sell its product or service under its brand. It may be difficult to grasp, so here is a basic example.

Marketing using influencers

Influencers, by definition, have the ability to sway someone’s purchasing decision. They don’t have to be from a specific profession or have a huge following. They must, however, acquire the support, trust, and respect of their audience.

Today’s influencers include actors, singers, bloggers, YouTubers, and Instagrammers.

The secret to successful influencer marketing is honesty. It is far too easy to lose your audience’s trust by endorsing products or services that you would not utilize. This can harm not only the influencer but also the product or service.

Influencers are often paid for their endorsements, but they don’t get commissions on a regular basis as affiliates do.

Content marketing

Content marketing is an important aspect of any business, and content partnerships have a role.

It is easier to describe content collaboration by looking at what it aims to accomplish. Regardless of how it was created or marketed, the end product is always a piece of marketing content that serves both businesses. Guest writing in return for backlinks is one example.

Loyalty schemes

One of the more basic and transparent partnership types is loyalty partnership. In this case, the brand works directly with its customers by giving rewards and perks for frequent or large purchases.

Loyalty partnership plans include bonuses, cashback, and incentives like “every 10th product free.”

The reward scheme is entirely up to the brand, whether it’s discounts, free products, or new features.

Resellers

Resellers and channel sales partners are sometimes mistaken for affiliates. Although these two types of partnerships are fundamentally identical, resellers are more involved with the merchant and the product’s deployment. Most of the time, their main job is to help a business owner get a product to the market.

Collaborations

A joint venture is a collaboration formed when two businesses decide to pool their resources to complete a specified job. It could be a project or any other type of business activity.

In the context of marketing partnerships, joint ventures mean that both firms integrate marketing efforts in order to increase income. These alliances increase brand exposure, provide access to new markets, and help cut advertising costs.

Product promotion

We’ve all seen it on TV: an actor sips a branded beverage in the middle of an episode of your favorite show. Coincidence?

No, I don’t believe so.

Product placement can be so subtle that you won’t see it, or it can be more apparent, such as when the camera focuses on the advertised product. In today’s society, this appears to be a little too promotional. As a result, it is frequently done in the form of native advertising.

Marketing through referral programs

Referral marketing is similar to affiliate marketing but does not require the same level of commitment. It typically takes the form of word-of-mouth referrals to friends, family, or coworkers. Most of the time, the reward is small but still appealing enough to get people to talk about your brand and products.

How to Create a Successful Partner Marketing Channel

Because employees are a business’s most valuable asset, it stands to reason that selecting the proper collaborators is the most critical decision in a marketing relationship. Here’s how you can go about it:

Choose the best sort of collaboration for your business.

Choosing the right marketing partner is linked to knowing your business’s goals. Begin by asking yourself, “What are we hoping to achieve?” Choosing a marketing partner who can help you achieve your goals more quickly and efficiently is critical.

Not every business requires a marketing partner. Not all marketing partnerships are appropriate for your business. While affiliate and influencer marketing can work to reach as many clients as possible, these models are not for everyone. The key is to understand what your business requires.

Choose your mates carefully.

Finding a trustworthy partner is difficult. Your partner should have specific talent and expertise, but how can you find out? There are numerous factors to consider.

Create a list of prerequisites first. What qualifications or experience are you looking for? What services should a business offer? In which country or region may this entity be trusted? What aspects of marketing would you like to focus on but lack the resources to do so, such as content or social media exposure campaigns?

Second, once you think you’ve found a possible partner, you should do your research. Find out what industry your partner works in and if it fits with your strategy.

Before making a final decision, talk to potential partners and find out how they have worked with other businesses in the past and what the results were.

Agree to all terms and conditions in advance.

Never begin any business or marketing collaboration without first agreeing on terms, conditions, payment methods, and a budget. If something goes wrong, this will assist you in resolving the conflict. Of course, the specifics of such an agreement may differ. It might be a formal contract signed by both parties or generic terms and conditions that the partner must accept before joining an affiliate program.

Reward and support your collaborators.

Any marketing partner should be profitable. The biggest mistake is to begin milking your partners rather than investing in improving your relationships with them. The method of rewarding your partners is determined by the sort of marketing partnership chosen. While affiliate programs often pay a commission on each transaction, sponsorships typically pay a flat fee.

Don’t abandon your partners once the alliance is complete. You should follow the process and be available to your partners anytime they require support. Make sure your partners have simple access to the materials and resources they require and keep them up-to-date on your modifications.

Set quantifiable goals and keep track of your progress.

How do you intend to assess success? Make sure your objectives are measurable and, most importantly, communicate them to your partner. Check the performance of your partners on a regular basis to see where the marketing partnership is heading. Ensure a dependable method for collecting and tracking the data required for your collaboration.

Excellent Partner Marketing Strategies To Implement in 2022

Partnership marketing is a marketing strategy much like any other. It is critical to have a purpose in mind and create the layout to achieve that goal. Here’s where to begin:

1. Locate an Ideal Match

Collaboration between businesses with complementary interests is essential for partnership marketing success. That includes staying away from direct competitors. A partnership between the two businesses should not compete for the same market share.

However, it is equally crucial to prevent partnerships with organizations that are wholly unconnected to one another. In such instances, there is a lower likelihood that one company’s clients will be interested in the other’s goods.

Look for a match that falls somewhere in the middle.

2. Choose the Best Channels

Following the selection of a partner, the next stage is to establish a collaboration initiative that will best promote both businesses. Both companies should come out appearing better and more interesting than if they worked on their own.

The content relationship between GoPro and Red Bull, which began with the joint sponsorship of a record-breaking 24-mile freefall in 2012, is a perfect illustration of how this works. Four years later, the firm formed a global collaboration, with Red Bull sponsoring events and GoPro providing immersive camera footage that captivated spectators.

It was an excellent company fit and media selection. The quality of the GoPro film amplified the enthusiasm of the event footage and boosted Red Bull’s signal.

3. Interact with Your Partners

Every relationship necessitates work, and partnership marketing is no exception. Before signing any contracts, it’s critical to discuss the professional goals of both brands with a potential marketing partner.

Discuss the strengths, shortcomings, and needs of each organization. Examine where one’s shortcomings intersect with the other’s strengths and vice versa. Provide suggestions on how the two companies might complement one another.

Most crucially, don’t let the conversation end once the relationship is formalized. Collect data on each combined marketing activity to evaluate its success and adjust the partnership’s trajectory accordingly.

What Is a Preferred Marketing Partner on Facebook, and Why Is It Important?

What exactly is a Facebook marketing partner? Facebook Marketing Partners is a group of digital businesses and agencies that have been certified by Facebook for their competence in assisting advertisers in generating the greatest results from their campaigns. It’s a collaboration meant to support agencies that advertise on Facebook and educate their clients about Facebook’s best practices.

Though Facebook’s Marketing Partner Program has been in place for some time, it has recently been expanded to include three tiers: Facebook Partners, Facebook Preferred Partners, and Facebook Premium Partners.

Any agency can become a Facebook Partner, but in order to qualify as a Preferred or Premium Partner, an agency must consistently meet Facebook’s requirements in the following three areas:

Certifications for Ad Spend Performance

Being a Preferred or Premium Partner indicates that an agency is competent, experienced, and successful in Facebook advertising. In other words, they understand how to optimize a campaign such that it produces successful results. Facebook has recognized these businesses as leaders in their fields and given them the right to use the official Facebook Marketing Partner logo (shown below).

What Are the Different Facebook Marketing Partner Levels?

To get the most out of your advertising agency, work with a Facebook Preferred or Premium Marketing Partner. Preferred and Premium tiers provide direct technical support, creative consultation, and access to training resources and events. An agency with this status will be able to create better campaigns that stretch every dollar of your budget because they will have additional insights and support on the latest improvements in Facebook Marketing.

How Does an Agency Become a Preferred Marketing Partner on Facebook?

Being a Facebook Premium or Preferred Marketing Partner is not easy. Only about 20% of total agencies have basic Facebook Partnership access. However, only 10% of agencies worldwide have Facebook Preferred Marketing Partner status, and only 1% have Premium status. Facebook Preferred and Premium Marketing Partners must meet strict standards for certifications, how much they spend on ads, and how well they do in order to be considered and to keep their status.

What Are the Advantages of a Facebook Preferred Marketing Partnership for Your Business?

When you work with a digital advertising agency that has earned the Facebook Preferred Marketing badge, you can expect to benefit from global case studies, enhanced Facebook support, first-time Alpha & Beta test access, and special support that other agencies do not have.

There are many reasons why it would be good for your business to become a Facebook Preferred Marketing Partner, such as:

  • Facebook Preferred Marketing Partners are subject matter experts.
  • Direct Facebook access with dedicated reps.
  • Keep up with the latest Facebook and Instagram trends and technologies.
  • Access to beta features and tests is limited.
  • Make sure you hire a respectable and dependable agency.

If you want the best performance and results from your campaigns, look for a digital marketing company that is a Facebook Preferred or Premium Marketing Partner. This indicates that Facebook and Google regard us as advertising experts who are knowledgeable, experienced, and successful. If you want to improve your Facebook advertising, you should work with a Facebook Preferred Marketing Partner. 

Conclusion

Partner marketing is too valuable for companies to overlook. By no means is this a panacea for all difficulties, but it may grow you in achieving faster growth, increasing visibility, entering a new industry, developing creative products, and expanding your customer base.

Partner marketing can take various forms, and it’s critical to pick the one that’s right for your business. Make sure you express the terms and conditions to partners ahead of time and offer them all of the tools and support they require. When done correctly, the benefit of any cooperation will save you time and effort, and success will follow.

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Elizabeth Sramek
Elizabeth is a Senior Content Manager at Scaleo. Currently enjoying the life in Prague and sharing professional affiliate marketing tips. She's been in the online marketing business since 2006 and gladly shares all her insights and ideas on this blog.
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