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2 Key Truths to Strategic Entertainment Partnerships

Posted on June 20, 2014

Today’s guest post is from David Chatoff.

Truth #1 – The NFL Is Not the Only Game in Town

co-marketing, partnership marketing

 Not every brand has the marketing budget to become an Official Partner of the NFL or the lead integrated sponsor on American Idol or the beverage featured in the latest incarnation of 007. For brands without a multi-million dollar sponsorship budget, there is another option. There are a ton of entertainment properties besides the NFL, American Idol, James Bond films that are often looking for interesting ways to promote themselves through helping drive viewership, ticket sales, and the like.

Here’s another way to look at it:  Aren’t entertainment properties really brands, as well? Don’t they need to catch consumers’ diminishing attention spans and ultimately be the property selected by the target audience for spending their time as well as their discretionary dollars? The answer is a a resounding yes.

This is where strategic marketing alliances or partnerships come into play. There are ways for brands to align with popular entertainment properties at a much lower cost (or even no cost), simply by exchanging marketing assets and channels of distribution.

Truth #2 – Quid Pro Quo or You Scratch my Back, and I’ll Scratch Yours

At their core, bartered marketing partnerships will provide a variety of benefits to both sides. If a retailer aligns with a television show, they will gain positive transference from the show, including opportunities to:

  • Use royalty-free key art from the show,
  • Feature its recognizable talent, within the retailer’s digital, social and in-store marketing,
  • Receive exposure and reach by being tagged in some promotional ads within the program and through the show’s digital channels.

These are the TV show’s best assets, so they won’t just give them away!  The television show will want to reach the retailer’s audience.  Bottlerocket has accomplished similar partnerships: ranging from aligning Urban Outfitters with the IFC cable network, to tying off-price fashion retailer Loehmann’s with the Style Network.

Maybe it’s a promotional display (window posters, counter cards) featuring the TV show across all of the retailer’s stores. Perhaps it’s a Facebook or Twitter promotion reaching the retailer’s millions of fans on social media, giving them the chance to win a walk-on role on the show. These are just a few examples; every partnership comes with its own set of objectives, success criteria and negotiating tools.

 The bottom-line is this:

Ensuring the brand and its promotional partner each feel like they’re receiving equitable value – though they may not be directly exchanging cash in the deal, both sides will be spending time and energy on the partnership, along with swapping their own marketing assets. It’s simply all about creating a win-win scenario.

This post originally appeared on our Brand Fast-Trackers blog.

[AI Image via Business Insider]
Posted in Marketing