Marketing Shouldn’t Be A Lonely Endeavor – 7 Step Cure

Lonely Dog Do you feel like you’re alone in your marketing efforts? 

Does marketing sometimes feel like a struggle?

Wish you had someone to bounce ideas off of or who could give you an energy boost?

Could you benefit from some objective input, but can’t afford the experts and don’t know who to trust to give you solid marketing advice?

Well, if any of this is true for you, you have a several options.

Your first option is you could contact me and I would be happy to answer your questions or to give you some solid marketing counsel.  The first consultation is free. Sometimes it helps just to get a different perspective and I would love to provide you with some feedback.

Your other option is to Buddy Up.  What do I mean?

Well, consider this fact.  You’re not the only business owner who is marketing to the same audience.  There are many of you.

True, some are direct competitors, but many others are complimentary or synergistic to what you are offering to the identical audience.

There are some distinct advantages to this Buddy Up approach.  It is also refer to as  Co-Marketing or Joint Venture or JV partnership.

  • Any business owner can implement such a partnership – be they online, brick and mortar or in the service business.  You can tap into your social media networks or in your local business community to find potential buddies.
  • By combining your product offerings, you should be able to offer your mutual audience something greater than the individual offerings.
  • Each of you is able to expand your audience reach, which should translate into more sales.
  • You and your new buddy may each attract a positive halo by being linked to one another – that is if you identify the right buddy.
  • It should be less expensive for each of you to promote as you will be sharing in the costs.
  • You have a new buddy with whom you can brainstorm, experiment and learn.
  • You can expand this concept to include several buddies so you could have a Buddy Club.

How can you tap into this Buddy Up dynamic? 7 Steps

1.  You need to make certain you know your audience.  Don’t skip this step. You want to make certain you come into your Buddy Up partnership making an positive impression.  Being savvy about your audience is one way to accomplish this.

2.  Identify synergistic products for your audience.  If they buy your products, what else do they need or want?  Find products that dovetail nicely into what you offer, or that when combined, create bigger value to your audience.

3.  Next, identify those in your marketplace that present non-competing offers.

4.  Study potential buddies.  What is their image, their size, their audience?  What are their product offerings?  What are they charging? How is the product positioned?

Your goal is to identify potential buddies where there is a good fit – relative to image, product offerings, costs and positioning.

Keep in mind that it may be that their product offering might require a little tweaking to make it a good fit with your offer.  So, don’t discount it without first discussing it with your potential buddy.

Also, it may be that you could combine efforts and create an entirely new product offering that would be a double whammy to each of your respective competitors.

5. Become a stealth stalker.  If you’re operating online, hang out on their website, participate on their blog, connect with them via the social media.  Really get to know them.

If you are on Main Street, visit their store.  Ask your customers if they’ve had any experiences with them.  Get to know their reputation.

Your goal is to link up with a buddy who shares similar values and has an excellent reputation.  You want a positive partnership, not a negative one.

6.  Craft your Buddy Up proposal which outlines the goal of the partnership and how success will be measured.  This doesn’t have to be a long proposal, but it should include the benefits you see for them and your mutual audience. You should also tell them your reasons for selecting them as a potential buddy.  Include an outline of the roles of responsibilities for each of you and how associated costs would be handled.

7.  Make a Buddy Pitch.  Not everyone will be interested.  But remember “no”, doesn’t mean it is “no” forever.  If you continue to foster good relations with them, there is a good chance they’ll reconsider.

Marketing Action

Now, just before the Holidays, is the perfect time to start identifying some buddies.  So get started.

Not only will you have someone with which to share the upcoming Holiday anxiety, but you may also create a perfect product combination that will make the difference in getting a sale or losing out to a competitor.

That would be a good thing!  Right?

You should share your thoughts about the buddy up concept in the comments section.  Have you tried it before?  What was your experience?

 

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Sheila Hibbard

Sheila Hibbard takes the fluff, hype and confusion out of marketing and social media. She provides small business owners with straight forward, no nonsense marketing guidance and techniques that produce results based on her 35 plus years in advertising, communications, research, strategic planning and social media. Author of Marketing Online Made Simple - WHO.

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