Marketing leaders believe that one of the top marketing trends of 2020 was to strike external partnerships, and it is expected that the trend will gain a stronger foothold in 2021
CMOs say that strategic partnerships between different organizations are the tried and tested method for driving growth and innovation, satisfying dynamic customer requirements, and removing cultural hurdles.
Such partnerships may have resulted from operational necessity or fast-changing customer behavior. The pandemic saw numerous partnerships to ensure the survival of the organizations involved.
The majority of the leaders believe that partnerships will continue to be critical in the post-pandemic world as well.
The appetite for collaboration
CMOs reiterate that all enterprises are interested in external partnerships. In fact, they consider partnership as an underutilized strategy. One of the biggest restrictions is how leaders explore and define brand partnerships.
Most marketers are commonly involved in collaborations related to licensing, product placement, content, affiliate marketing, distribution, and channel partnerships. The disruptive partnership is a relatively new measure that needs more involvement from the marketing leaders. It can help boost strategic business impact and growth.
CMOs say that such a trend needs businesses to explore outside their silos, expand the ecosystems, reanalyze capabilities, partnerships, brands, and the comprehensive existence if they wish for sustainable growth. The core for such effort is harvesting data from beyond the industry of origin; reconsider collaborations and cross-industry rivals relevant to the business, and participating beyond conventional industries in ecosystems.
Leaders believe that the biggest hurdle to the trend is understanding the need for deploying such measures. Will the solution fuel the brand and keep it increasing, or will it behave as a strategic driver for business growth. They explain that it doesn’t discard the conventional forms of brand partnerships.
There are various advantages of trying to extend and pursue. It helps increase the reach, explore into new sets of consumers, align with brands that boost the social and environmental credentials, create engagement with existing clients, among other things.
The drivers of partnership and human requirement
Marketing leaders acknowledge that organizations might be tempted to indulge in lots of brand partnerships and innovations of 2020 to the pandemic and the unprecedented circumstances. However, there are other factors involved as well.
They point out that the majority of the contributing factors lead back to defining and pushing for growth. When all the conventional routes of growth dried up, marketers started considering out of the box strategies and were forced to think of ecosystems where the organizations exist and explored new methods for value creation.
The long term macro trend has also opened up the avenue for discussions regarding the disruptive partnership. It includes open data movement and the capability to be more connected across different options provided by the companies in the market.
Another key driver of external partnership is the shift away from services and products to providing customer-led experiences. CMOs emphasize that this was an area where the impact of COVID-19 could be seen in the kind of partnerships preferred by enterprises locally in 2020.
Every organization had to reconsider either the emerging universal requirements or the basic human requirements. Pushing back to the basic needs meant that enterprises had to reanalyze their ability to satisfy these needs. And if they couldn’t be quick, they would need to partner. The pandemic gave enterprises the opportunity to adopt newer methods and explore more areas.
The tried and tested processes will now be deployed effectively in 2021 to drive business growth.