Promoting your online business almost always depends on others. You use family and friends to get the ball rolling when you are just starting out. If you have some customers, you count on them to pass the word. Cross promotion helps you do the same thing but with other businesses.
What is cross promotion? In a nutshell, it is working with other businesses both large and small to draw attention to your products. Cross promotion is different from affiliate marketing in that it is an agreement that is mutually beneficial to both people in the same way. With affiliate marketing, the affiliate gets a percentage of the pie based on an agreed upon amount. With cross promotion, both partners are looking to receive the same amount of compensation.
With that said, cross promotions can begin with your business associates within your niche. No doubt, you have found some kindred business souls on niche forums and social networking sites. Niche associations are another great place to find businesses that operate within your chosen business niche.
The key here is to find someone who is not in direct completion which is much like affiliate marketing. They already have their finger on the pulse of the niche so any leads or sales you get through their promotion are targeted. They have shopped with your partner and are also likely to buy from you.
Why Cross Promote?
The easy answer here is that you want to increase your sales. That is the goal of business after all. You would be doing less than your absolute best if you didn’t pull every rabbit out of your magic marketing hat to help your business perform even better.
Another reason is to increase your visibility among your business peers. When you partner with a bigger more well known business, you increase your credibility. After all, those large companies wouldn’t waste their time with someone who couldn’t bring something valuable to the table.
Types of Cross Promotion
So what does cross promotion look like? Well, you can post advertisement links on each other’s sites. This gives customers a chance to check you out. When businesses are compatible this is more likely to be rewarding. For instance, if you sell party supplies, partnering with a party planner makes good business sense.
Write website content and blog for each other. This gives your customers and their customers a chance to see and hear from the person they are talking about. Allow links within the text and a bio with links for your partner so the visitors can click on it for more information.
Cross promotion between similar businesses are both a way to network with new business people and also a way for both parties to increase traffic and profits.