The partnership marketing definition isn’t really one definition. It’s actually two. The first one is what we all understand as partnership marketing, where you work together to achieve a common goal. It’s ongoing, usually more than two years and includes a regular rate. The goal is to achieve sales goals, results and/or attention. The second definition is perhaps one most people don’t consider. That is when a marketing company works at a discounted hourly rate and shares some of the profits coming in. This type of structure is what we did with Dart Frog Events when they couldn’t fully afford our service
Think Of The Long Run
It’s important to know which one suits you. Aside from the advantages and disadvantages each one brings, there is another important aspect of partnership to consider. In the long run, suitability will differ between the two as not all businesses or their needs are the same. But it’s safe to say that there are options for hesitant business owners that have the funds but aren’t ready to completely invest. Also, bear in it’s important to understand how your growth will look in the long run, so you can make the right choice for your business.
What that looks like to take the alternate approach is paying less for an hourly rate, but in return providing a percentage of your sales. The nice thing about this is that there are varying levels of flexibility. The percentage can range from %5 all the way up to %30 or more. So the possibilities are endless with a good partnership.
Learn Your Partner First
It’s hard to tell straight away, so for any long term commitment with any partner testing is required. Assuming you have the time, which not all businesses do. Regardless, if you can, hire an agency at full price for just 2-3 months before any mention of a long-term contract. This way you can outline goals with them for a 2-3 month project. By doing this it really helps to narrow down the options. In essence, you are creating your own fork in the road for the partnership marketing definition. This way, you’re not leaving so much to chance, as far as finding a good match and “business chemistry” go.
Look At The Numbers
Once you’re at this stage, it’s good to take a step back and look at the numbers. Are you seeing high returns but still finding it too expensive? Well, then you know that creating a pricing deal with the agency is a sound decision. Conversely, if you’re seeing high returns and you believe that overtime the partnership will pay for itself, then it may be a better decision to stick with the agency. Afterall, it would be a shame to get caught with paying %30 of your profit from online sales for 2 years. Not only that, but it can also stunt your internal growth. The profits you’re sharing could be used for something else. Perhaps it’s hiring a new employee, acquiring an important office space, or even giving a raise.
Measure Twice, Cut Once
You may have guessed by now, but you can’t switch between the two types of partnerships once you’re committed. At least, not until the contracts are over. That’s why this is something that requires a lot of time and clarity in order to create the right circumstance for your business to grow. After all, once you’re in there’s no going back either way. However, the marketing agency could agree to a new contract, allowing you to switch. But it’s not wise to rely on such a last ditch option. You can avoid all of that by just properly understanding the partnership marketing definition, and doing your market research.
Want to learn more about agency partnerships? Check out this article on digital marketing agency partnerships.