Why Synergistic Email Marketing Makes Sense

Columnist Jason Warnock believes spicing up your email marketing by collaborating with another brand in unexpected ways can be a win-win for both organizations.

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We’ve all heard about how predictive intelligence is changing email marketing. The use of predictive models to generate offers based on user profiles, behaviors and other variables has obvious benefits for both brands and users.

One of the reasons predictive intelligence is so useful is that it places the brand smack-dab in the middle of the consumer’s existing life patterns and online routines.

Rather than forcing the consumer to take a hard turn toward the brand and its products, predictive intelligence tools meet consumers where they are and deliver content or offers that naturally align with their needs.

But predictive intelligence isn’t the only kid on the let’s-go-where-consumers-are block. Although it doesn’t get as much attention as predictive intelligence, synergistic marketing positions brands at the center of consumers’ life patterns — and it generates big benefits for both businesses and consumers.

In its simplest sense, synergistic marketing involves two brands working together to offer a product, service, event or promotion in tandem. Taking this one step further, brands can work together to incorporate a synergistic approach into their email marketing.

How Synergistic Email Marketing Works

Recently, I attended an industry event where I was seated next to representatives from two major retail brands. One brand specializes in optometry and eyewear; the other brand provides quick oil changes, tire replacements and other automotive services.

During a lull in the activities, I asked my table partners if they had ever explored marketing synergies between their brands. Not surprisingly, the idea of leveraging synergies through collaborative email marketing had never occurred to them, but it could very well work as a marketing promotion.

With a little prodding, I discovered that on average, consumers change the tires on their vehicles every two to three years. Depending on the state, drivers usually renew their licenses every four or five years, and a percentage of drivers need to take an eye exam to receive new licenses.

So one of the synergistic promotions I proposed was for tire change customers to receive an offer for a 20 percent discount on eye exams performed by the optometry chain. Although the two brands appear totally unrelated on paper, the combination of services created an experience flow that makes sense for consumers, as well as the brands involved in the promotion.

Why? In some sense, each company’s service offering complements the other, and consumers who buy from one company could potentially benefit from the other.

And that’s the key to synergistic digital marketing. By exploring collaborative possibilities that are logical (but not necessarily obvious), brands have the opportunity to make consumers’ lives more efficient, while creating a win/win scenario that benefits both companies.

The Advantages Of Synergistic Marketing

Synergistic email marketing can be applied across a range of products and industries.

For example, a sneaker brand could team up with a public transit organization to deliver a footwear promotion for daily commuters. Or a gym could join forces with a grocery store to cross-promote healthy eating and fitness.

The possibilities are endless, but the important thing is to identify consumers’ experience flows and then design creative, multi-brand promotions that improve consumers’ lives. With the right synergistic digital campaigns, brands can achieve several important advantages, including:

• Increased Reach. Synergistic marketing increases your brand’s digital marketing reach because it provides access to your partner’s customer base. That’s common sense.

But keep in mind that you’re not just tapping into random consumers — you’re creating connections with people who are predisposed to buy your products or services.

• Cost Savings. Since both brands benefit from synergistic marketing promotions, you can split the cost of promotions and campaigns with your marketing partner.

The caveat is that promotions and offers need to be designed to deliver roughly the same level of benefit to both parties.

• Better Customer Experience. In many ways, consumers are the big winners in synergistic marketing. Since synergistic marketing often requires brands to be unrelated, yet logical connections, they allow consumers to think and buy in a way they’ve never considered before.

The best synergistic marketing promotions significantly improve consumers’ lives and enable your brand to provide a better customer experience.

The rise of predictive analysis shows that the future of digital marketing lies in opportunities to place brands and products in the flow of consumers’ existing routines.

Synergistic digital marketing takes that concept to the next level by identifying unexpected ways for brands to work together in an effort to improve consumers’ everyday lives.

Contributing authors are invited to create content for MarTech and are chosen for their expertise and contribution to the martech community. Our contributors work under the oversight of the editorial staff and contributions are checked for quality and relevance to our readers. The opinions they express are their own.

About the author

Jason Warnock
Jason Warnock is the vice president of market intelligence and deliverability for Yesmail Interactive. A seasoned digital marketing veteran, he spearheaded the development of the Yesmail Market Intelligence tool that tracks the campaigns of competitors across eight digital channels, including email and social media. Warnock has designed and executed successful technology and business strategies for several Fortune 500 companies.

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