Some businesses tend to overcomplicate the strategy and execution of a B2B (Brand to Brand) partnership, this generally leads to overwhelm and prevents the partnership from getting started. When it’s done right, it can increase your ROI, convert new leads, elevate your brand trust and build long-term relationships with your customers.
B2B partnerships can come in many shapes and forms, the list we have curated here is a good place to start when first approaching B2B partnerships. Some are frictionless and easy to implement, others will take time to plan and execute.
It’s important to remember that these types of partnerships generally deliver a great ROI if the partnering brand has your target audience in the way of matched demographics and psychographics. And always remember with partnerships, one campaign is hardly ever enough.
Partnerships should be approached as a long-term strategy for building brand awareness, trust from your market, and product knowledge–and not as a quick fix for generating new customers. Although, new customers are the second-order effect.
That being said, it’s always great to test a partnership out with what we call Low Hanging Fruit opportunities – these are simple and easy-to-execute partnerships to gauge the appetite of your partnering brand’s audience for your product or service before you commit to a long-term relationship.
Some of the different types of brand-to-brand partnerships you can try:
- Email Campaigns
- Social Media Collaboration
- Flyer Inserts
- Sample Inserts
- Advertising Spot on Website
- Co-branding a Product or Content
- Featured Blog
- Co-Hosting a Webinar / Podcast
- Sponsor a Thank you Page
1. Email Campaigns
If you’re partnering with a business that has an email list of customers and leads, this is a great opportunity to have your brand promoted to their audience. It’s important to remember with this type of campaign, you shouldn’t go straight for the sale. You should follow a process similar to this:
- Warm introduction
- Provide value
- Ask for the sale
Your objective should be to convert a lead as opposed to making a sale. Check out this case study from our platform. You can provide value by supplying your partnering brand with a piece of content, like a blog, vlog, or article that their audience will find useful and interesting, then you can follow that up with a special offer.
2. Social Media Collaboration
This is probably the most popular form of collaboration nowadays. Most businesses have a social media following and use the platforms to keep their clients up to date with products and services.
A partnership could see your B2B partner share your Instagram story with their audience, promoting a specific product or service that you have. The objective here is to have a percentage of their followers begin following you. Increasing the amount of people you can communicate to for free and eventually convert into customers.
3. & 4. Samples and Flyer Inserts in Orders
People love having their online orders arrive. Even though you know what’s in the package, it’s still exciting to open the package to see your new purchase. If you’re lucky, the brand you purchased from includes a few little goodies.
It could be a flyer with a discount on our next purchase, or it could be a sample of a new product. This is a great opportunity to include something from your brand in their package. Educating their customers about who you are and what you do.
This is a great partnership idea and one we certainly suggest as low-hanging fruit. If you’re the partnering brand that is sending out the orders with a special offer for a product or service that your customer would be interested in, then you’re seen to be going out of your way to continue to nurture and provide value to your customers. Here’s one from HelloFresh and Baresop that you can check out.
5. Advertising Spot on Website
Is there a space on your and your partner’s website to include a banner or tower ad about your partnerships and collaboration? Not only will this help increase qualified traffic to your website and help your SEO by having a quality and relevant backlink.
An easy win here is to agree on the design of the banner or tower ad and both display this on your websites. Run this for a month and track the clicks and conversions. If this is deemed successful, look for other opportunities to provide value to each other’s audience.
A cost-effective strategy to increase the amount of new followers on your socials or new leads. Collaborating with a brand that has a similar audience with similar interests is an easy way to generate some traction from your partnerships.
All you need to do is provide something of value from your business for your partner to give away to their audience. The best strategy is always asking their audience to do something small to enter. I.e. following your page or tagging a friend who usually has the highest conversions.
Think about multiple touch points with their audience, supporting the giveaway/competition with an email campaign is always a great idea as some followers won’t see the Instagram post, others won’t open the email, but those who see both are more likely to take action.
7. Co-Branding Products
This type of partnership generally takes a little more time and investment but can be incredibly effective for brand awareness and increasing your trust in your market. Nothing says trust like a reputable brand promoting your brand on their products. For example, Redbull and GoPro collaborated and had Felix Baumgartner skydive 27 miles from the earth’s surface.
Finding a partner whose audience shares a core value makes this easier to recruit and execute. If your customer has a core value of sustainability, they will make that purchasing decision across different products, services, and industries. I.e. you have a beauty product for women 18-35 who care about sustainability, you could co-brand a product with a fashion brand whose core customers are women 18-35 who care about sustainability.
Redbull and GoPro share customers with the same core value of sports and adventure.
8. Featured Blog
Much like the advertising space on a partner’s website can help with new website traffic and SEO from backlinking, a featured blog can have a similar effect. The strategy here is that you can guest write a blog for your partner that they can then post on their website and share across their social media for their audience to read about. This is a great way to showcase your knowledge and expertise in your field or industry, exposing your brand to a new audience in a subtle way. The perfect example is exactly what I’m doing here with this article.
9. Co-hosting a Webinar/Podcast
This is a great way to be able to provide expert knowledge to each other’s audience and showcase your personal brand to help drive awareness and trust for your brand. People love meeting the face–or in this case, voice–behind the brand.
You’re able to easily communicate the problem your product is solving, the values of your brand, and why the audience should give it a try. This is an educational play, so always make sure it’s educational by nature and look for subtle opportunities to mention your product.
10. Sponsor a Thank You Page
We love this page because it’s such an unutilized piece of real estate on a website, and it commands attention post-purchase–which is important because we don’t want to affect the conversion rate of a partner’s website.
On this page, customers are generally looking for their purchase confirmation and any other details, they are scanning and looking for things – here is the perfect place to include a promotion. They are in a buying mood already, and you can lead them directly to your website to learn more about a certain product.
Make sure the product is complementary to the product they just purchased. An example here would be if I just purchased protein powder, the thank you page promotion could be an activewear brand.
There are a lot more partnership opportunities that you can try, but these are a great starting point. If you’d like to find other brands that share the same customer as you to execute purpose-driven partnerships, create a free account with Partnar.io and find your perfect match.