NovaXyon Entrepreneurial How Sudden Logo Partnerships Are Redefining Luck

How Sudden Logo Partnerships Are Redefining Luck



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Weird works, especially in the realm of modern brand collaborations. Today’s fickle consumers—led by the ficklest of them all, Gen Z—are quick to switch loyalties. To keep them coming back, brands are partnering in unexpected ways and reaping often-surprising successes.

These unconventional marriages between seemingly disparate brands have been happening for a while; think Cheetos meets Forever 21 in 2019. (Wouldn’t it be a laundry day nightmare?) Or the hyper-frenetic GoPro-Red Bull mash-up in 2016. Now, they’re starting to come at a fast and furious pace.

Today, we’re seeing plenty of outside-the-box thinking on display when it comes to brand partnerships. Slurpee sneakers? Kool-aid skateboarding duds? Free Chipotle grub for an E.l.f. purchase? These collabs are fun, flexible, and perfectly suited for today’s modern consumers. Nothing is off the table when it comes to contemporary joint-branding efforts between companies. Collaborating companies don’t have to be alike in any way, just creative and willing. In fact, the more sensationally strange the team, the better the chance of nabbing press mentions and notoriety.

Creativity plays a big part, but you still have to be strategic when it comes to branding partnerships. The last thing you want is for your carefully constructed collab to turn into a face-palm moment, a la the Kendall Jenner-Pepsi branding snafu that keeps resurfacing.

To avoid missteps on your way to a buzzworthy collaboration, apply these principles:

1. Center your brand partnership on authenticity and alignment.

For brand partnerships to hit the jackpot, both companies need to stay true to their ethos. Consumers find it easy to sniff out inauthenticity. When they spot it, they’re sure to call it like they see it on social media. Success means showing off your true colors to your existing fans—and those who will be introduced to you through your collaborations. Just because you’re working with a different type of business doesn’t mean you should change the core of your brand. You and your team have worked long and hard to create your brand; protect it by insisting on being authentic.

Consider BMW’s collaboration with Louis Vuitton; both lead with a luxurious, high-end appeal. Their partnership allowed them to leverage this shared “truth.” Louis Vuitton created a line of luggage specifically designed for a particular BMW model. Though the union was unusual, it didn’t have a jarring effect because of the underlying authenticity of their messaging. Instead, it seemed a natural fit between two sophisticated companies accustomed to appealing to a very specific type of shopper.

2. Revisit the metrics you use to define a “win.”

You no doubt have a series of success metrics that your marketing team considers its go-to KPIs. Guess what? You’ll probably need to throw some (if not all) of them out the window to determine if your fresh new collab is working. Case in point: Ralph Lauren’s meta-dance with Fortnite. It’s impossible to say exactly how success is being defined, but you can bet your polo pony that both parties tracked the venture carefully.

The puzzle is that all those tried-and-true success metrics might not be pertinent, especially if you’re pioneering into new territory. Let’s say you decide to try a brand collaboration with a company outside of your normal sector—though you share the same target audience base, you aren’t even close to being in the same vertical. Accordingly, you may not be able to gauge your collaboration on sales figures alone. Instead, look at your audience reach, social brand awareness, or customer loyalty ratings.

This isn’t to say that you shouldn’t still be paying attention to bottom-line figures like ROI. You should. You’re in your collaboration for a reason, after all, and part of the reason is probably profitability. Just be certain that you’re not treating your brand partnerships like you’d treat your conventional marketing campaigns. These big collabs are something a little different, which means you need to collect appropriate data to measure them accurately.

3. Stay on the leading edge of trending collabs.

Let’s be honest: It’s not easy to stay up to date with all the collaborations on the market. Nevertheless, you need to stay in touch with what’s happening somehow. You could assign this to your team or do it yourself; you might even want to conduct some social listening (using advanced software, of course) to make sure the future of brand partnerships doesn’t pass you by.

As you’re checking out trending collaborative efforts, leverage them to prompt your team’s thinking. And don’t just focus on brand partnerships within the retail, beauty, fashion, and food spaces. Brett Sirianni, the chief digital officer at Inspira Marketing Group, suggests concentrating on the “essential” sectors like healthcare, insurance, and technology, too.

“Brand partnerships are still feasible in every industry. Most recently, a brand collaboration between NASA and Prada was announced for NASA’s Artemis III Mission to the moon in 2025,” Sirianni notes. “While the everyday consumer won’t be wearing these luxury-engineered suits, it’s making headline news—and brand recognition is skyrocketing.”

If you’re not staying ahead of the curve, you could be overtaken by a competitor who is. At a time when 71% of consumers have positive feelings about brand collabs, you can’t afford to be left behind. Therefore, conduct some deep dives. Regularly look into brand collaborations that are working as well as those that are unmitigated flops. You’ll learn tons and prepare your company for its next (or first) collaborative partnership.

It may seem a bit odd to step out of your vertical to join hands with a different brand. That’s because it is. But there’s never been a better time to take a calculated plunge into the world of weird, wonderful, and worthwhile collaborations. Modern audiences are hungry for it.

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