Partnership marketing seems to be dead for many of my peers, but there is an undercurrent of innovative people who refuse to let it die.
Somewhere along the way as social brand managers we forgot the importance of sharing and building allies.
I want to call out all brand managers right now on something that I feel is very important. Stop being so stingy on your social shares. We need to be less self absorbed, focus less on our own numbers of retweets, likes, favorites, fans and instead focus on what we can accomplish together.
Learning how to share
Great social marketing takes some heavy investment in partnerships.
If you think that you are a social media expert just because of the amount of likes your brand’s Facebook page has, then you are a fool.
I have been a social marketer since 2007 and over that time period I have come across far too many brand managers who love to say that they have corporate policies about sharing links or content that are not their own. This is a cop out; it is straight lazy and an ineffective strategy. These same brand managers won’t help cross promote a great charity that is relevant to their industry or location.
I understand not wanting to share something, for whatever the reason and that is your right. But do we really need to hide behind a policy? Just don’t share it out if you are so against it.
But, let’s take a few minutes to look closer at the actual value of sharing content from other brands on our own social media channels.
Take some notes from Spreecast
I have zero partnership or financial relationship with the brand Spreecast. It is a platform that allows anyone to host a live online video broadcast with numerous guests and chats. After the broadcast, content is archived at Spreecast.com
I am a big fan of the site and have been attending Spreecasts by Gary Vaynerchuk on a regular basis for the last few years. I recently wrote a blog about an experience during Gary’s last Spreecast and simply messaged the brand a link to my story on Facebook.
Spreecast’s brand manager, Kathy went above and beyond and it is really what we all should strive for as marketers.
She not only tweeted it out but her team created a graphic around the topic I wrote about featuring Gary Vaynerchuk and the Spreecast logo.
She posted that on their companies LinkedIn page with a link to my article.
This took some effort on the part of Spreecast, but I believe that it is worth the effort.
Spreecast also went above and beyond by including a link to my blog in their weekly blog.
The effort has paid off in an organic relationship, which naturally has made me even more of an advocate for their brand. Without that effort, I would never spend this much time talking about them in an article.
However, the potential for beneficial future relations between Spreecast and myself in the future are unlimited.
Organic relationships happening everyday
The beauty of networking is that you never really know which allies will be willing or able to help you in the future. It’s a climate that almost forces you to be kind and respectful to everyone who messages your brand’s Facebook page.
If you private message a Facebook page with a lot of Likes and ask them to share something with their audience, most won’t do it. Some will say, feel free to post it on our wall, but we all know that has less value than the page actually sharing it with their audience. It is understandable that brands can’t share everything, but when they do, it can be a powerful experience getting another brand manager on your side.
An experiment in sharing
To prove how easy it is to share, I thought I would lead by example. I created a Facebook page this week with the sole purpose of sharing other cool brands and projects in the Philadelphia area. I don’t know if anything will come of it, but I am sure a couple of new relationships will be formed from it.