What is Cross Promotion and How Can it Benefit Your Small Business?


What is Cross Promotion and How Can it Benefit Your Small Business?

Cross promotion is about expanding the marketing reach of your product. It’s a broad term that can mean advertising across different mediums or even cooperating with other companies to showcase each others goods and services.

Here’s an example. You’re shopping for new computer on a website from a company that sells business models. An ad appears for the latest antivirus software. This kind of cooperation between the companies selling the computers and the software is called cross promotion.

Here’s everything that small businesses need to know about how it works.



How to Get Started with Cross Promotion

Finding the right kind of company to partner with is a critical step.  One of the first things you need to keep in mind is that you’re not just going to be selling each other’s products, you will be sharing reputations as well. People who see your products and the other companies being advertised together assume you’re both credible.

Make sure to check the other firm’s credentials and reputation thoroughly.

A Natural Fit?

That’s why you’ll need to ask yourself in the beginning if there’s a natural fit that includes enhancing each other’s products and sharing good credibility in the marketplace.



Another example might be a high-end coffee maker cross promoting an exclusive chocolate company.

More Advertising Bang

Ask yourself if you’ll get more bang for your advertising buck. You’re a small mechanics shop. You might want to team up and pay for a flyer or brochure that advertises your company and other tire and battery companies who help you foot the bill.

Make sure you’re not opting for exactly the same markets here.

Pick A Strategy

The strategies that you can use can bounce between online marketing and print, television or radio media. First things first. You’ll need to find the best tools to use. After you’ve put together a partnership, using analytics will help you to find out which medium is best and which times/dates to post content. Google analytics is a good starting point.

You need to make sure your brand marketing tools and logos are consistent before you start.  Remember to include a carefully planned Call to Action in your campaigns.



Special Offers

Special offers and discounts work well. If you’re using social media, you’ll want to post regularly on a partnering website. These special offers should emphasize any complementary features.

Email Marketing

Email marketing is another tool that has good return on investment. This is an excellent way to promote your latest blog post or social media tweet via a newsletter.

Brick and Mortar

Small businesses that want to have a physical presence can share booths at local tradeshows. You can even set up a small display in your partner’s brick-and-mortar store. You could consider sharing a space like Starbucks who leased some spaces in Target stores.

Advantages of Cross Promotion

You’ll see an ROI quickly. In fact, using cross promotion can be faster than using only SEO, which can take several months to pick up steam. What’s more, cross promotion marketing is typically done on a pro bono basis. That’s great if you’ve got a limited marketing budget to work with.



If you managed to cross promote with a legitimate and established brand, you’ll get a boost in reputation that will convert into sales.

Disadvantages

If you’ve got a unique business that sells specialized goods and services, it might be hard to find a suitable partner. It’s harder to keep a consistent brand message when you’re using cross promotion since you’re more than likely advertising across several channels.

Photo via Shutterstock

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Rob Starr


Rob Starr Rob Starr is a Staff Writer for Small Business Trends. Rob is a freelance journalist and content strategist/manager with three decades of experience in both print and online writing. He currently works in New York City as a copywriter and all across North America for a variety of editing and writing enterprises.

One Reaction

  1. Aira Bongco

    Cross promotion is a way for you to promote other businesses and even promote your own business. I think it works because you are promoting in the same target market.

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