Great marketing is all about results, and when it comes to powering up your referral strategy co-marketing can work wonders. Co-marketing refers to a strategy wherein in two or more businesses team up to create a joint marketing campaign. By leveraging the talents of your neighbors and trading on your own authority, you and your partner both end up being more effective together than you would be apart.
In this blog post we will cover:
- Selecting a partner for co-marketing
- Putting together a gameplan
Selecting a Partner for Co-Marketing
Look to Your Own “Like” List
Building a respected practice has a lot to do with trust, and you need to be sure that your patients can trust your partners the same way they already trust you. The best way to do that is by co-marketing with someone you already know, like, and respect. Make a list of who you admire or take note of other people in your industry who you follow on social media.
Keep in mind that while it’s great to partner with an industry influencer, people in the spotlight are in demand and are likely to be pickier about who they choose to associate with. Catalog your own strengths so you can ably and quickly illustrate why you and your practice are such a catch.
Consider Brands Outside Your Niche
One of the best tips for finding a co-marketing partner is to choose one that complements your practice but doesn’t compete with it. If you’re a med spa, you don’t want to reach out to other med spas. Instead, consider a healthy food delivery company, a yoga studio, or juice bar.
Keep an Eye on Added Value
Ask yourself these questions about any potential partner:
- What resources do they have that I don’t?
- Will their clients be interested in what I have to offer?
- Will partnering with them reap better results than I can achieve on my own?
- When I Google them, are the search results positive?
- What opinions do my friends and family have of them?
- Is their content professional and useful?
Look at their blogs, review their YouTube channel, and learn more about their digital platform. If it seems like a good fit, you might be ready to pitch a partnership.
Putting Together a Game Plan
The Meet and Greet
Your first meeting with a potential co-marketing partner will likely involve a lot of small talk, but there are a lot of serious things to discuss, too. No marketing plan can be successful without a detailed plan of attack. Set goals, establish milestones or checkpoints, assign tasks, and schedule regular meetings (online or in person) to make sure that everyone is on task and things are progressing as expected.
- Is this a one-time partnership, for instance for an ebook or event, or will it be ongoing?
- What type of content will you be producing?
- Who has final draft approval?
- Who sets the publishing schedule?
- How will the budget for copywriting and graphic design be divvied up?
- What happens when someone doesn’t hold up their end of the bargain or if a deadline is missed?
- How often will you be touching base with each other and how?
The need for clearly stated goals cannot be emphasized enough. You can’t possible measure the success of a marketing campaign unless you know what your target outcome should’ve been. It’s fine to adjust expectations or fine-tune goals if circumstances call for a tweak or two, but even subtle alterations can wreak havoc if you don’t start with a solid blueprint.
- How many referrals are you aiming for?
- Are you targeting a certain demographic?
- Are you hoping to build up certain services or increase your new patient count overall?
The answers to these questions will form the basis of your entire marketing strategy, so don’t leave the starting gate without thinking them through.
Co-marketing can be a powerful tool, but with great power comes great responsibility. Your patients likely did a lot of research before putting their well-being in your hands and you owe them the same consideration before you start referring them to a new partner. This is your reputation and future we’re talking about – choose wisely!