Recently we have seen a new form of marketing & branding activity getting in the limelight among startups – can be termed as ‘Co-Opetition’ model – where there is no competition between two organizations but helps both partners use a cooperative format of marketing. In simple terms, a partnership between two organizations for mutual business benefits.
So you always find that one person in every big company whose profile says ‘Partnerships & Affiliate Marketing’, but unfortunately in startups, the marketing manager wearing multiple hat and working with some inner turmoil is the one looking into partnerships as well. So what they do in terms of partnerships specifically in the startup space?
‘Looking out for some exciting marketing/partnership/branding ideas, so called ‘Guerilla Marketing’ at zero investment cost’
Sounds interesting? Still confused?
Let me keep it simple for you with a simple example on how we did it at Knowlarity.
Six months back, our CEO asked our marketing team to start giving away Free SuperReceptionist Basic Number for 6 months to every newbie startup in India. Considered millennial, it looked like an easy task, I mean, obviously who doesn’t want to avail a FREE service today,especially when you belong to this intellectual family called ‘STARTUP’. But to my shock, entrepreneurs were not attracted to our free offerings or maybe every email send by me was ending up in their spam box.
So here are the list of few assumptions we made:
Wrong marketing approach for the offerings Startups saw less value in the offerings provided by us Startups always look out for more benefits
So we really did something amazing and yes, this time it worked out!
Let me leverage this platform and promote these offers to you first. Yes, it’s for ‘FREE’ with no hidden charges.
a. Startup Package Offerings Free for 6 Months :
One +5 SuperReceptionist number- basic plan Click to call widget for website Outbound call & SMS for promotional campaigns
This offer can be availed by any startup who are at early-stage.
b. Accelerator Package Offerings Free for 6 Months:
Above mentioned ‘startup pack offering’ for the accelerator and their startup members Knowlarity office space to organize events with sponsorship Special package as communication partner for startup/tech events
This offer can be availed by all accelerators, incubators, co-working space providers or any organization who is trying to build a startup community.
c. Communication Partner for Events:
One helpline number with multi-IVR to manage the event 25 audio-conference number Outbound call & SMS for promotional campaigns Voice based feedback post event
This offer can be availed by event organizers
Interesting? Yes, we realized that every technology/service which you offer in the market even for ‘FREE’ is not attractive unless you are seriously adding some value for your partner organization. This actually solved 80% of our problem.>
The results: We are getting into awesome partnerships with bigger accelerator brands & startup events and also able to solve business communication issues faced by every startup at an early stage. And in return, we are able to create brand awareness with improved user engagement. Certainly not a bad deal for Knowlarity.
The magical tip for startup partnership:
Remember, you are engaging with your partner at zero-cost. So offer them something which will add value to their business.
There is no competition, but a peer partnership. If you are a bigger company, help smaller firms to grow faster, they will be your valuable customers for life.
You are not selling your services, but reaching out to your prospective business partner. Meet them, discuss & understand their expectations too.
Discuss clearly about the business deal with, no surprises later.
Ensure every partnership is unique for you.
Being a part of Startup world, we all have one ambition which is to innovate a better solution for every problem. We are trying our bit to collaborate & achieve it together.