Using Cross Promotions in Strategic Marketing

No doubt, you’ve noticed that on the back of your grocery store receipt, you will find a number of businesses that are advertising in this space. This is a good example of cross promotions. Even larger companies, with huge marketing budgets, will take advantage of opportunities to be involved in lower cost cross promotions. These cross promotion campaigns are effective in reaching customers. Here’s why.

First, a word about cross promotions, and what they are. A cross promotion is when two or more companies make use of each other’s materials or marketing promotions on the same ad piece, like the receipt example mentioned above. Obviously, the grocery store customer had to have a receipt for their purchase of groceries, and so the advertising company—maybe Planet Fitness, for example—used the valuable “real estate” space on the back of the receipt. Planet Fitness has the advantage of having a ready-made means of free or virtually free distribution of their promotional materials, as well as increased reach for their brand. The grocery store has the advantage of receiving advertising revenue from Planet Fitness.

Now that you know what cross promotions look like, you can most likely recall a number of cross promotions that you have seen recently; they are everywhere. From huge companies, to small mom-and-pop businesses, and everything in between; all types of companies use cross promotions, because they have historically been very effective. Cross promotions work, plain and simple.

Part of why cross promotions work so well, is because they are cost effective. They save you money. Because distribution is free or very low cost, as mentioned earlier, this takes care of the most expensive component of advertising. Now, the costly process of getting your message into the hands of those that may potentially act on it, has been taken care of.

Another reason why cross promotions are so great, is because they are efficient. There is very little waste with a cross promotion, since the item carrying the message is valuable to the holder in more than one way. Further, they are efficient because you can control who does or does not receive your materials; you have greater control using this method, than you do in most any other means of marketing.

Several great arguments for using cross promotions have already been mentioned. There are others, such as the fact that they can build trust; remember, someone is willing to have their name and their brand paired with yours. Another reason to use cross promotions is that you are giving your potential customers real value, since your ad is highly targeted. Also, cross promotions can be just plain fun; you receive an item for one purpose, only to discover it has value to you in yet a second (or third or fourth) way. No doubt you’ve found at least one or two of these reasons to be convincing enough to use cross promotions in your own campaigns.