ALTI's Apprentice Boardroom Report For 3/4/05 (Episode #7)

Practical Lessons From The Apprentice
Cross Promotions Make a Difference

Donald Trump's The Apprentice television show asked his remaining 11 candidates to design, build and operate a miniature golf business with just $12,500 in seed money.  

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Allan's 2
Why Audrey Failed
running time 2:30


Fantasy 
Game Analysis
Strategies for Episode Eight
running time 4:42
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Episode # 1 
(Burger King)
Episode # 2
(Hotel Renovation)
Episode # 3
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Episode # 4
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With only one day to design and construct and one day for operations the winner would be determined by the team that produced the most operating revenues.

In watching tonight's seventh episode, which focused more on the interpersonal drama than on the business, here are some practical lessons that you can apply to your business:

Cross Promotions -  Effective and Strategic
While the seduction of this task is to expend precious resources in designing a more creative and original mini-golf course, winning is measured in dollars, dollars are earned with traffic and sales. Only Magna Corp's Kendra Todd, 26, fully understood the value and importance of marketing and promotions when she stated, "We could have a brilliant design, we could have a great theme going on in our miniature golf course, but I think the team that ultimately wins this task is going to be the team that is more creative in their marketing to draw people in from outside the venue."

Armed with her resolve, Kendra and Erin Elmore, 26, set out to create an exclusive cross promotional relationship with every attraction at the Chelsea Piers and essentially eliminated the most convenient value add and combo positioning promotional partner from Net Worth Corp's marketing strategy.

Upon the completion of the task, Magna secured its second victory in a row earning $508 dollars ($204 more than Net Worth) and sending the opposition to the Boardroom, where the firing of another candidate would equalize the teams for the first time since the show began.

The practical lesson here is to move swiftly to secure strategic cross promotional alliances before your competition does.

--- SIDEBAR ---
Listen to my audio analysis of why Audrey failed along with additional tips to be an effective and respected manager.

Why Cross Promote?
Cross promotion allows you to combine your offer with a means of free or low-cost distribution. By joining forces with other credible businesses who also reach your niche market you can reach your customers more efficiently, credibly and memorably than any other mass media.

Cross Promotional Marketing is typically very affordable, and when used properly, often capable of locking out your competition in much the same way Magna locked out Net Worth. This tactic is considered a strategic advantage.

The 3 "C's" of Cross Promotions:

Cost
Why would another business be willing to promote your business, driving her valuable clients to you? They wouldn't unless there was something valuable in it for them. The key here is to make a reciprocal offer to your promotional partner that carries with it a fair & reasonable exchange of perceived value. As long as your partner "perceives" your offer to be of equal "value" you'll have no problem securing these relationships.

Control
With mass media advertising, the advertiser typically has little control over who sees their ad. However, with cross promotions, you typically have numeric, geographic and demographic control.

Numeric Control
To protect from over-commitment, you can often control the number of people who your partner presents your offer to, as well as control the time / duration of the promotion.

Geographic Control
If your a local brick-and-mortar business, cross promotions can effectively leverage geography and convenience to a far greater degree than any mass media.  For example, we often see movie theaters and nearby food establishments engaging in cross promotions where the restaurant benefits from post movie traffic and the theater benefits by adding value to the price of admission.

Demographic Control
Unlike mass media where excess reach beyond your target market is considered waste, you can choose to work with partners who cater to the same niche market as you do. This affinity is achieved by fully understanding your market and knowing the other products or service that they consume. Some businesses are natural fits like real estate agents and mortgage brokers; suit shops and dry cleaners.

Credibility
The most beneficial and most subtle of the three "C's" is the associative credibility that tends to transfer from your partner to you just as an endorsement does.  Further, some promotions are so good that they will actually enhance your partners own relationship with her own customers. For example, the ice cream shop across from the movie theater, if the promotion is presented as the movie theater has secured a $1 discount off a large banana split with the display of a ticket stub then it appears to the movie goer that the theater has secured this benefit for its customers.

The Big Secret Behind Effective Cross Promotional Campaigns
The critical and most over looked step of implementing any cross promotional campaign is achieving buy-in from your promotional partner across all levels of the organization that are responsible for presenting the promotion to their customers. To incentivize the enthusiastic support of your partners employees, consider offering small gifts that represent a slightly greater value than the promotion, but does not go as far as a "bribe".

Shameless Plug: 
No time to create cross promotional marketing campaigns?
 

ALTI Consulting and our team of specialists can identify strategic alliances, develop creative cross promotions and work with both teams to execute the campaign effectively. To get help with your next cross promotion, give us a call, or shoot us an e-mail, our contact info is at the end of this newsletter. 


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