Why Strategic Brand Partnerships Are So Important

Jacque Seaman / June 4, 2018

Two brands teaming up together isn’t a new concept. We see it every day, from partnerships like Spotify and Uber, to Red Bull and GoPro, or BuzzFeed and Best Friends Animal Society. We see it done well and we see it done not so well (remember Susan G. Komen and KFC?).

These examples are corporate brands that have the resources to pursue dynamic partnerships, but not all partnerships need to be on a grand scale to make an impression.

The biggest drivers in a successful strategic brand partnership are brand alignment followed by mutual impact. What are you trying to achieve as a brand and how does this other brand help you do that? Both groups need to ask themselves this question.

Finding the right brand presupposes a deep understanding for your customers or clients, and when you get it wrong it can really hurt, so be calculated with your decision. If you’re unsure, test it with a focus group or ask your networks.

As you consider teaming up with another brand, think about the following reasons why it can be beneficial, so you can determine the most strategic path forward.

Reach new customers

Obviously teaming up with another brand allows you to tap into their existing customers or clients. But what’s your goal by doing so? Are you trying to refresh your image; reach younger people or older adults; or a more health-conscious audience? Whatever it is, consider brands that would help you achieve your goals.

Reach new markets

Like reaching new customers or clients, your brand partner can help you get exposure in new markets. As companies expand physically or virtually with their services and products, this can be a faster and more direct way to start building a following on the ground. Sure, you could pump up the marketing dollars on creative campaigns but partnering with an existing and known brand will help expedite awareness efforts.

Added value for existing customers

The brand partnership could offer perks to your existing customers by way of a discount for that brand’s services or other incentive. This provides added value for loyal customers and shows you care about keeping them happy and engaged with new offerings. It is also a way to be creative with campaigns to activate your supporters. For example, you could have an action for your customers or clients that would then “unlock” a bonus or offering from the partnering brand.

Extend marketing budget

In broad strokes, when you team up, you are essentially leveraging each other’s marketing dollars. Each company’s plans such as promotions, advertising, events, PR, product giveaways and more can elevate the partnership and extend its reach through dollars each company may not have accessed otherwise.

Cement brand credibility and trust

A solid partnership will help build and cement a brand’s trust, particularly if you are a new company or offshoot from an existing brand. This is a great way to help company growth, create a loyal following and secure other partnerships or opportunities.

All and all, a well-thought-out brand partnership is a smart avenue to explore if you weigh the potential risks and ensure it’s a strategic move for your company that will help you reach your goals.