Cooperative Marketing

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Cooperative Marketing

What is cooperative marketing or co-marketing alliances?

Before we can explore the value of these types of relationships, creative ways to engage in cooperative marketing, whom to partner with, and effective ways to use this method, it must be understood exactly what it is. From much research on this method of marketing, it seems that it is clearly a working partnership where there is mutual understanding that success for both partners depends each on the other. It is usually a contractual relationship with coordination between both partners in marketing, as well as, possible research, development of the product, and maybe even production (Bucklin, Sengupta, 2003). It may also involve co-branding where two brands are marketed on the same package or in the same promotion (Grewal & Levy, 2010, p.327).

What is the value of such relationships?

Unlike vertical relationships, between manufacturers and distributors, co-marketing, “leverages a firm's unique skills with the specialized resources of its partners to create a more potent force in the marketplace” (Bucklin, Sengupta, 2003). Through cooperative marketing alliances, co-branding can enhance consumer perception of a products quality. For example; NutraSweet claimed to be safe as a substitute for sugar, but did not take off until they formed a marketing alliance with Coca-Cola and Pepsi (Grewal & Levy, 2010, p.327). Some benefits of cooperative marketing are; able to reach a larger target market and able to stretch the advertising budget.

Besides advertising, what are other creative ways companies can engage in cooperative marketing?

While advertising may be the most widely used method involved in a cooperative marketing effort, there are other ways, such as; sponsoring charitable or educational events, to enter into a cooperative marketing effort. On another level, they may swap customer mailing lists or agree to include the partner’s marketing flyers in their customer...
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