Since partnerships open new opportunities brands and provide a way to improve their business operations, CMOs should strive to embrace them.

During 2020, brands worldwide have joined their hands to form striking, remarkable deals. Experts predict that in the foreseeable future, brands that aspire to strike external partnerships can augment their growth, meet the changing needs of their customers, and drive innovation.

In Deloitte’s 2021 Marketing Trends report, the company found that 80 % of the c-suite who made partnerships during the pandemic crisis still believe that making partnerships is going to be important in the post-pandemic era as well. But, what types of external partnerships are worth pursuing and what does it take to make them happen?

Below are a few factors that can enable CMOs to embrace external partnerships to succeed in their marketing efforts:

  • Having a positive outlook

As per experts, even though marketing leaders show a great interest in external partnerships, they often fail to utilize it as a strategy. Since they are more in partnership around, licensing, product placement, affiliate marketing, channel and distribution partnerships, they don’t have a stronghold of developing disruptive partnerships that can drive strategic business impact as well as growth.

Hence, CMOs need to move beyond operating in silos and broaden their perspective beyond ecosystems, rethink capabilities, partnerships if they aim to accelerate their growth. CMOs should pivot their focus effort beyond their industry of origin as well as reassess external partnerships and cross-industry competitors to their brand.

  • Tackling Internal limitations

Since most CMOs perceive their role as marketing and communication leaders, they concentrate less on the one where they have to act as drivers of organizational growth. Though traditional forms of brand partnerships which limits to improving reach, aligning with a brand to lift social and environmental credentials, it prohibits them from staking a claim as a strategic growth driver. By opening themselves to a variety of opportunities, CMOs can act as a bridge between different brands and organizations who can put the pieces together, leading to a successful partnership.

  • Partnership drivers

While COVID-19 played a key role in driving brand innovations and partnerships in 2020, there are other factors that play just as important roles. Defining and pursuing growth and where it is going to come from, is one of the factors. But, brands are increasingly feeling that the growth opportunities are running out. Hence, CMOs should start to look for opportunities outside of regular business operations and need to develop strategies that will help them to add value to the ecosystem.

Even though the adverse effects of COVID-19 are slowly receding, it will take time for brands – especially their CMOs to gather and strengthen a partnership, while their budget has substantially reduced. However, by collaborating with right partners that enable the brand to fuel its growth and make impact and scale, CMOs can rightfully claim their position as a key driver in the holistic growth of their brand.