A lesson in Co-branding: How vendors can help partners build their local brand
One of the biggest challenges vendors face when selling through channel partners is brand distortion...
Co-branding is the process of leveraging another company or partner's brand to promote a product or service. This is typically done through joint marketing activities, assets and content. Partner marketing software plays a key role in helping businesses engage in co-branding activities by automating the co-branding process on the asset and content front. Both, companies and their partners can benefit greatly from co-branding.
Co-branding helps companies and partners join forces and use the synergy to market and sell their products/services better. It helps increase brand visibility and awareness as both parties leverage the market presence and brand value of each other.
For example, companies can benefit from co-branding if their partner has a strong local presence, as it helps companies establish their brand and gain trust in the local markets faster. This is especially true when exploring new geographical markets nationally or internationally, where the company's brand is just starting out, whereas the channel partner is a well-known brand name.
From the partner's perspective, co-branding helps them gain the trust of their end-consumers and sell faster if the company is a well-known or bigger brand than the partner.
When companies engage in co-branded marketing with their partners, they allow their partners to use the company's brand and messaging for marketing and selling the company's products and services. Instances where co-branding comes into play in partner marketing software scenarios include-
Apart from the various benefits offered by co-branding, it is a good idea for companies to co-brand their sales and marketing assets because it helps them maintain their brand and messaging consistency. When companies sell through partners, one of the challenges they face is brand and messaging dilution. This is more so the case when companies don't provide their channel partners with co-branded assets. In such a situation partners attempt to leverage the company's brand by using the company's brand elements such as its logo on their marketing materials. While the partners may be authorized to use the company logo, they may not be aware of the nuances associated with it. Especially, if the channel partner doesn't have a dedicated marketing team or staff, the whole exercise would be a botched-up attempt at co-branding by the partner.
Similarly, without co-branded marketing and sales materials, there are high possibilities that partners create their own sales and marketing content for the company's products or services. In such cases, no matter how engaged or well-trained a channel partner is, there will always be a gap between the corporate voice and partner voice. The product/service positioning, brand values and overall messaging just won't resonate 100% with that of the company's.
Companies that don't offer co-branded sales and marketing assets to their partners run the risk of partners damaging their brand elements and messaging inadvertently in an effort to co-brand their materials.
Powerful partner marketing software programs allow the vendor's corporate marketing department to create all the sales and marketing materials they need, centrally, and then, using co-branding capabilities, automatically customize them to reflect the partner's branding. Co-branding with partner marketing software can extend across multiple marketing and sales touchpoints including
Another area where co-branding helps is in increasing partner engagement with the company's brand. When selling through channel partners, companies have to remember that most partnerships are not exclusive−meaning their partners also sell products and services of other, competing brands. The ultimate goal of every channel partner is to drive sales and generate revenue. So, naturally, channel partners are more likely to engage with the brand that's easiest to sell. A product that flies off the shelf with minimal effort is most likely to be the partner's favorite. When companies offer co-branded assets to their channel partners, they are helping partners market and sell the company's products more effectively. Channel partners don't have to invest any time or resources in creating relevant marketing or sales content, or co-branding the company's content at their end.
This makes co-branding a powerful tool that vendors can deploy when competing for partner mindshare.
Want to learn more about how you can strengthen your partner relationships with co-branding? Check out Mindmatrix! Mindmatrix offers powerful co-branding tools that companies can use to drive partner engagement and help partners market their brand successfully. Please visit our website to learn more
Mindmatrix is a leading provider of PRM software, channel partner marketing software and sales ecosystems enablement solutions including partner portal software. Since its inception in 1998, Mindmatrix has been focused on helping companies sell more, faster. A pioneer of sales (direct & indirect) and marketing enablement technology, today Mindmatrix is the only company offering a fully unified platform (Bridge ™) that connects and enables sales (direct & indirect), marketing, alliances and partner ecosystems. Backed by Mindmatrix's innovation and expertise, Bridge expands sales ecosystem enablement beyond its traditional boundaries to cover not just Sales Ecosystem Enablement, but also Partner Marketing and Multi-vendor Solutions Management.