How to Select The Perfect Brand Partner
Brand partnerships are one of the most effective ways to reach new audiences. Some of the most successful campaigns we’ve worked on in our careers have been co-branded, creating mutually beneficial opportunities for both organizations.
There are several reasons to consider partnering with another brand:
- Co-branded marketing campaigns can increase your brand awareness. With minimal investment, you can partner with a similar-size company to launch a campaign that effectively reaches a whole new audience. So theoretically, if the partner promoted your brand to their entire base, you could double your reach.
- Partnerships can help boost your brand reputation and credibility. Simply by associating your company with another reputable brand can have a positive impact on brand perception in the eyes of customers.
- Partnerships can open up new product opportunities, creating new revenue streams. Depending on the product or service you offer, you could launch a new co-branded SKU and sell it on your partner’s website for additional exposure and revenue.
Are you thinking about launching a co-branded marketing campaign yet? If so, here are a few things to keep in mind when selecting a partner:
Similar Target Audience
Your goal is to ensure you are marketing to as qualified of an audience as possible. This means that any new audiences align within your target customer and have a high likelihood of purchasing your product. Ideally, they should share similar demographics, psychographics, media consumption habits, and/or hobbies. You want to make sure that any new leads are qualified leads, as there is no point in marketing to a new group of people who simply may not be interested in your product.
Reach and Approximate Audience Size
Your best bet is to pursue partnerships with brands who are either similar in size or slightly larger than your own. Your goal should be to reach as wide of an audience as possible (assuming they are qualified), but you also need to be realistic and understand the value and audience size you bring to the table. If this information isn’t readily available, we typically look at a brand’s social media following and compare it to our own. For example, if your target audience is Millennial females and you have 150K Instagram followers, we would suggest focusing on brands whose Instagram following is between 150K-250K (with solid engagement).
Think about how your customers use your product and what else they may want or need along those lines. You’ll want to consider other products which are adjacent to, but not competing with, your product. For example, you are a small business owner who invented a new in-home, portable gym. You could consider partnering with a paleo food delivery service or a new local fitness apparel retailer. Neither product competes with your own, and there’s a high likelihood you’ll share a similar target audience.
This can mean a couple things. First, do each of your organization’s stand for the same things? For example, are you both environmentally conscious or offer a service that enables a healthy lifestyle? Advocating for similar issues can help you craft messaging that’s in line with your beliefs and core identity. From a design perspective, do both of your brands value similar design fundamentals? Once you start designing the look and feel of your campaign, you’ll find that things may be a bit easier by partnering with a brand who complements yours aesthetically.
Once you determine if a brand partnership makes sense for your organization, come up with a short list of brands you’d love to partner with while keeping these tips in mind. Put some thought into what a potential launch campaign can look like and pitch it to each of your prospective partners. If you need any support strategizing a campaign, reach out to us — we’d love to help!