How Co-Marketing Can Heavily Increase Your Backlinking Game

How Co-Marketing Can Heavily Increase Your Backlinking Game

David Campbell is a digital marketing specialist at Ramp Ventures. He helps manage the content marketing team at Right Inbox. When he’s not working, he enjoys traveling and trying to learn Spanish.

Co-marketing involves connecting with like-minded brands to achieve similar marketing goals. When you collaborate with another brand’s marketing team, you can reach more potential customers with your products, and create highly engaging creative campaigns, too.

Products are not the only things you can promote through co-marketing. You can promote your content, and by extension, your brand. One of the ways you can do this is by building strong co-marketing relations with other marketing teams with the goal of sourcing valuable content & backlinks that will strengthen the quality of your blog or content offering.

In this article for Process Street, we’ll look at how co-marketing can heavily increase your backlinking game.

Let’s get to work!

Co-marketing at a glance

Co-marketing is a marketing strategy that sees two brands working together to promote their respective brands. The goal in entering the mutually beneficial relationship is to accomplish much more than what a company marketing team would have accomplished alone.

co-marketing

Brands can collaborate in many ways:

  • Host an event: For example, a design company teams up with a merchant service provider to conduct workshops on how to create ecommerce websites.
  • Offer partnership discounts: A cinema offers a discount for a meal in a local restaurant for every ticket purchase.
  • Create joint adverts: A beverage company joins forces with a fast-food chain to create a traditional ad.
  • Do content co-marketing: Brands can collaborate by creating a joint content strategy.

Co-marketing works to benefit multiple brands as they pool their resources together. It is different from co-branding, which denotes two brands coming together to create a new product that represents their brand identities.

3 reasons to adopt co-marketing

co-marketing

Co-marketing has a number of advantages. Brands can reach more potential customers, and have the ability to create highly engaging campaigns. Two creative heads are, after all, better than one.

The 3 primary benefits to co-marketing campaigns, however, are:

1. Expand your network 🤝

Growing purposeful connections is key to a healthy and thriving business. When you collaborate with another marketer, you can gain access to that person, and by extension, to other people that person knows in your industry. That’s a good thing, because you never know whom you might need in your next marketing campaign.

2. Save money 💰

Co-marketing can save money as you divide the intellectual and monetary contributions. When you launch a joint marketing campaign, for instance, you wouldn’t have to spend too much because you share the costs of creating the campaign with someone else.

3. Reach marketing goals 🎯

Think about a group discussion, where people come together to find a solution to a common problem. When you collaborate with another brand’s marketing team, you can take advantage of their skill-set and strengths. The result? You both reach your marketing goals.

Successful co-marketing examples

Now that you know co-marketing can help your business in many ways, let’s look at some examples of real-world co-marketing that succeeded.

We’ll look at two examples:

H&M’s luxury line

Versace and H&M collaboration
(Source)

H&M is known for its affordable and street-style apparel. Fashion enthusiasts went wild, then, when it teamed up with brands like Versace and Alexander Wang to create new H&M collections. The move was a stroke of genius, after all. Suddenly, luxury items that were previously out of reach were affordable to the average customer.

Both brands got a lot of publicity for that collaboration. People couldn’t stop talking about how H&M had revolutionized the clothing industry. For many, the luxury brands also did the right thing of making products accessible to the masses. The products did very well themselves, too. Within minutes after launch, the popular pieces were sold out.

McDonald’s and Hello Kitty

McDonald's and Hello Kitty collaboration
(Source)

This co-marketing campaign was so successful according to Sky News, McDonald’s had to increase the number of Hello Kitty toys to meet public demand — by a whopping 40%!

Co-marketing: the step-by-step guide

Brands can form co-marketing that don’t involve their respective products or services. In this section, we’ll zero in on content co-marketing. We’ll look at backlinks, in particular.

Backlinks don’t just promote your content by directing quality traffic to your site. They are critical to conversions and your SEO efforts, too. Each backlink from an authority site serves as a vote of confidence by that site for your content. Backlinks are a signal to Google that it can push you up there on Search Engine Page Results. The higher you rank, the more chances people will click on your site and convert.

That said, how exactly can you form a co-marketing strategy that gives you backlinks?

Here’s a step-by-step process:

1. Create an email template

According to Statista, the number of email users worldwide stands at 4.03 billion. That figure is likely to include the content marketers you’d want to collaborate with.

In short, email is still the best way to reach people.

So if your email address is long gone, activate it. If you do have an email address, make sure it is professional-sounding. Remember, you’re representing your company. Create another email address if you have to. It’s very easy to create a new Gmail account for business purposes.

Once you have your email address, create an email template. You want to generate as many quality backlinks as you want. That means you’d have to send more or less the same email with your proposal to as many marketers as you can. Writing a different email for each marketer you’d like to collaborate with is too time-consuming.

You have to make sure your email template is something your recipients will want to open. Follow these tips:

  • Introduce yourself.
  • Be concise and get to the point.
  • Offer something of value.

Here’s a sample email template you can use:

co-marketing

Notice that in the template, the sender offers something of value to the recipient: backlinks. You can offer other things, too (more on this later).

The sender also doesn’t beat around the bush. They use informal language that’s easy to understand.

Even if you’re using a template for your pitch, make sure you personalize each message. Your email template should also be free of grammatical and spelling mistakes. You really don’t want to send an obvious form letter to {First Name}, or have any glaring typos when you’re trying to make a good first impression.

2. Reach out to other marketers

Now it’s time to reach out to other marketers.

There are two main things to keep in mind when determining who you should reach out to:

  1. They don’t represent a direct competitor for your business.
  2. They’re in charge of content that’s relevant to your market.

For instance, if you’re selling email marketing software, you’d look for marketers who oversee blogs on email marketing or marketing in general. It wouldn’t make sense for a health and wellness blog to carry a link to your content.

Use Zest to look for those sites. You can browse through articles in each category easily on the platform. Once you have your list of sites, find out who the person in charge of content is. You can do this by looking at the brand’s website or by doing a quick search on Google. If that doesn’t work, use LinkedIn. Type in the company in the search field and LinkedIn will give you a list of users employed by that company.

Once you have a name, use an email finder to look for the marketer’s email address.

If they don’t reply the first time around, don’t be discouraged. Follow up after a few days. Make sure you don’t overdo this, though. Don’t annoy your fellow marketers with too many emails. If they don’t reply even after a few follow-ups, move on.

Outreach Log Spreadsheet

Create an Excel sheet so you can organize your email outreach. Your Excel sheet can be something as simple as the example above.

3. Decide the parameters of co-marketing

Once you know whom to reach out to, you need to decide on the parameters of your collaboration. This collaboration can come in many forms. You should aim to lead with value. Perhaps you begin by proposing to share some of their content, or perhaps you are offering to write a guest post or create an infographic. By leading with value, you open up the potential to collaborate and drive genuine value to both yours and their audiences.

There are many types of infographics you can create. Here are some examples:

  • Mixed charts: Incorporate different charts and graph formats to explain a concept.
  • List: Why not use bullet points to enumerate relevant information?
  • Timeline: Tell a story in chronological order.
  • How-to infographic: Explain the steps involved in creating something.
  • Process infographic: Create a flowchart or a decision tree.
  • Comparison infographic: Compare and contrast two concepts.
  • Map: Use a map and different colors to explain a concept.
  • Photo: Combine high-quality images and charts.

You can also collaborate on an infographic to generate a high-quality backlink. If you have data on the number of people using social media, for example, you can offer that data to a fellow marketer who will create the infographic instead. You get the backlink and the infographic, they get the data and a backlink, too! Data storytelling is key here.

Another way to drive value with backlinks is to offer your backlink in place of a broken link on their website.

When setting the parameters for collaboration, make sure both you and your fellow marketer get some value in the partnership. Co-marketing is a mutually beneficial relationship. Don’t insist they carry your backlink without offering something in return.

4. Keep track of progress

Once you both agree on the parameters, it’s time to keep track of the progress of the co-marketing campaign.

You can ask your fellow marketer about whether or not they published your content. The problem is, like you, your fellow marketer is busy and might not be able to reply to you.
You can also manually check when a site starts linking to you. That, however, can be time-consuming if you contact more than one marketer in your email outreach. You’d have to access so many sites in a day.

The good news is, there are tools you can use to monitor your campaign.

co-marketing

Linkody, for example, can track your incoming links and display those for you. It can display other information such as the nature of the links, the domain authority of the site, among other things. Brand Mentions is another useful tool, too.

Just choose the tool that works for you from automation tools to track progress to establishing points of communication via emails or video calls. It’s important you keep track of the progress of your co-marketing so you’ll know which approach works. So the next time you plan on getting backlinks, you’ll know exactly how to do it.

Your business’s key to success

Co-marketing is critical to the success of your business. When you collaborate with fellow marketers, you can reach more potential customers. You can reach new markets for your products.

Here are other main takeaways from this article:

  • You can reap other benefits through co-marketing. You can expand your network, and find solutions to your problems. Since you share the cost of a campaign with someone, you can also save money.
  • It’s not just products you can promote through co-marketing. You can also promote your content. In doing so, you also promote your brand.
  • One of the ways you can promote your content is by working with a fellow marketer for backlinks. Co-marketing can up your backlinking game–that is, if done right.
  • To get backlinks through co-marketing the right way, you need to do your research and reach out to your fellow marketers who have similar marketing goals. Once they agree on the collaboration, you need to decide on the parameters for collaboration.
  • Finally, monitor the progress of your collaboration.

Now it’s over to you. Harness the power of co-marketing to your benefit. Follow these steps to increase your backlinking game, too. You’ll get those conversions and improve your SEO efforts.

Backlinks are not just critical to conversions; they’re crucial to your SEO efforts.

What co-marketing strategies have worked for you? Are you an outreach expert? Share your tips and tricks in the comments!

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Leks Drakos

Leks is a rogue academic with a PhD in contemporary fiction from the University of Kent (Paris and Canterbury). Hobbies include post-apocalyptica, street photography, and monster studies. Twitter: @leksikality [he/him]


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