Alliance marketing provides a unique opportunity for B2B companies to connect with other businesses within the industry. It’s a quick, cost-effective way to build trust and grow your business. Alliance marketing, also known as strategic partnerships, is nothing new. However, it’s still a highly underutilized marketing method that can produce great results for your business. If you don’t have an alliance marketing plan in place or you need to revamp your current plan, then you’ll want to start with the basics.
What is Alliance Marketing?
Alliance marketing emphasizes collaboration between two or more companies that are not in direct competition for the same customers. Yes, they share the same audience, but only to a certain degree.
A great example of everyday alliance marketing is a car wash found at a local garage. While the garage services vehicles in one way, the car wash services the same audience in a different way. Together, they bring together a wider customer base since they serve the same people, but at different stages in their customer journey.
Alliance marketing can take many forms. It’s a broad category that encompasses any cross-industry collaboration between two or more companies. Examples can include:
- Joint venture
- Co-branded products and services
- Partner-generated content
Why Having an Alliance Marketing Plan is Vital for Your B2B Business
With 57% of companies saying that they use partnerships to acquire new customers and another 44% saying they form alliances to gain insights into the market, companies must understand why having an alliance marketing plan in place is essential.
The benefits of having a well-planned alliance marketing plan in place for your B2B business are numerous, including:
- Brand awareness
- Lead generation
- Increased reach
- New content ideas
- Strategic positioning
- Increased ROI
Research shows that when it comes to alliance marketing or partnership programs, the top priority amongst 77% of businesses is revenue growth, followed by acquiring customers (74%), increased customer retention/loyalty (72%), and improved customer experience (72%).
Once a mature partner program has been in place, studies show that revenue growth can reach as high as 78%. However, even a low maturity plan can see a 27% in revenue growth.
Examples of Successful Alliance Marketing in Action
There are many examples of successful alliance marketing campaigns in action. A few include:
GE and The Economist
GE, the multinational conglomerate, partnered with The Economist to create a new marketing tool called “GE Lookahead.” The product was launched in 2013 and has since been considered one of the best examples of content marketing in action.
GE Lookahead was a global marketing tool that brings together an all-star lineup of experts from various industries to discuss and debate some of the most important topics of our time.
Uber and Spotify
In 2014, Uber and Spotify formed a partnership that allowed Uber drivers to include Spotify Premium as part of their driver package. In addition, the partnership meant that Uber customers could listen to Spotify as they ride, allowing Uber to create a customizable experience for their riders.
5 Ways to Enhance Your Alliance Marketing Plan
Since alliance marketing can be a highly effective way to generate leads and boost your brand awareness, it’s important to take the time to enhance your plan. You can do that by considering these five latest alliance marketing trends:
1. Automate Your Alliance Marketing Plan
Automating your plan can help you build a strong foundation for your partnership as well as keep track of everything that needs to happen. Automation can come in many forms, including:
- Tools to help you manage your program
- Apps to help you track your progress
- Software that allows you to manage everything in one place
2. Implement Data Privacy Programs
Data privacy is a major concern, especially in light of recent privacy breaches. Because of this, it’s vital that you have a data privacy program in place to protect your employees and your customer’s information. It’s also important to make sure that you’re staying compliant with the latest privacy regulations.
3. Launch ABM Campaigns
ABM, or account-based marketing, is a strategy that focuses on targeting specific accounts and business decision-makers within those accounts. By focusing on a specific audience, you’re able to optimize your efforts and create a more targeted marketing plan.
The benefits of ABM campaigns include:
- More focused marketing strategies
- Increased ROI
- Improved lead quality
- Faster conversions
- Increases close rates
By targeting those who are ready to take action, you are able to tailor your marketing plan to those who are most likely to convert. That means fewer resources are wasted on those who are still in the early stages of the buying journey.
4. Create a Mobile Experience
As mobile continues to dominate the business world, it’s essential that you create a mobile experience for your customers. Mobile is the most used device for accessing the internet, with approximately 54.8% of website traffic being mobile traffic. It’s also the preferred device for purchasing goods and services.
The more seamless the mobile experience is for your customers, the better. That means making sure that your website is mobile-friendly and ensuring that any mobile apps are easy to use and functional.
5. Consider Adding Influencer Marketing to the Mix
Influencer marketing is one of the latest trends gaining popularity in the business world. It’s a strategy that connects your brand with an influencer or thought leader in your industry. By connecting with influencers, you’re able to expand your reach and connect with a new audience that may not be familiar with your brand.
Dive into ABM Campaigns with Hushly
An alliance marketing plan is a highly effective marketing strategy that can help B2B businesses grow. It’s a great way to reach new audiences while also creating new opportunities for your brand.
Once you’ve broadened your audience, it’s time to start targeting those decision-makers, and thanks to account-based marketing, you can do just that!
To learn more about how account-based marketing can help your brand, check out our guide on ABM for beginners.