25 March 2022
With restrictions easing, world travel and international borders re-opening, 2022 really does feel like the year for making friends again. And in more ways than we expected!
Brand collaborations have for years been a thing of pop-culture fodder. Bringing different audiences, different worlds together to reach a wider demographic and ultimately opening up a much bigger buying pool. When done right, these collaborations have sparked more than sales. Popular culture has listened, re-tweeted, and bought in to the concept of brands aligning goals and brand messaging to expand their audiences.
Fashion houses bringing in designers from competing brands has historically been a successful creative experiment with popular Parisian x Japanese brand Kenzo bringing in Nigo of Louis Vuitton fame in 2021; and with the likes of BrewDog and ALDI collaborating on a custom IPA, it’s a great way to expand your audience; and if successful, stimulate some positive brand noise.
With so much economic uncertainty through covid, collaboration for brands in 2022 can mean economic stability. It can mean sharing the cost, sharing the profit and sharing the risk in this sometimes-inconsistent market. In fact, ‘data from Accenture indicates that successful collaborations can cut a brand’s logistics costs by 3-4% and manufacturing costs by 5-15%. Further, collaborations can raise a store’s shelf-stock by 5-8% while optimizing inventory management for brick-and-mortars.
Out-of-stock online goods are said to cost brands up to $17 billion per year and supply chain delays in the latter half of 2021 have only contributed to this net loss. But successful brand collaborations can bring this number down while boasting a broad scope of marketplace opportunities.’ (Rethink Industries)
But collaborations go way beyond just sharing the costs, some of the more iconic brand collaborations, like Beyonce and Pepsi – and yes, Beyonce counts as a brand – have not only generated big sales for brands, but they have also shifted popular culture. Hence her collaboration with Adidas for Ivy Park – she generates global sales and gives brands a level of certainty on revenue that stand alone brand campaigns might not.
Brand collaborations also offer the opportunity to navigate outside of traditional brand activity and have it still feel brand appropriate. Can they push the boundaries, yes. But don’t all good marketing campaigns push the boundaries in some way?
We’ve included some noteworthy brand collaborations below and look forward to the new friendships that 2022 will bring!
A stylish collaboration with one of the most popular social media platforms, the partnership is between the Levi’s® brand and Pinterest. The collaboration results in a first-in-market, personalized styling experience for consumers, based on a visual questionnaire and style insights from their individual Pinterest activity. The result? A Pinterest board that might suggest a pair of jeans tailored to your tastes, an editorial image to spark ideas for how to wear them, or a link to the customization page on Levi.com so you can make them your very own.
“Consumers have endless choices and access to products. At a certain point, that gets almost too big, so you need something more curated; you need someone who will be your virtual stylist and come back with what works for you,” Brady Stewart, senior vice president for the Levi Strauss Americas digital team, told Glossy magazine for a recent piece on the Styled by Levi’s® project. “This is bringing back the concept of discoverability. Before the internet, you’d go to your favourite boutique, and someone pulled the best items for you.” (Levi Strauss)
The collaboration entitled: ‘Leave ‘serious’ at the door’, this collaboration is a great example of brands outside of the higher price brackets that are still pushing the boundaries to inspire their buyers. And why can’t fast food go hand in hand with fashion?!
‘Critically, both Greggs and Primark know what they are not: aspirational or high fashion. This self-awareness is essential to ensuring that anything they launch, outside of business-as-usual products, remains authentic and keeps the public ‘in on the joke’. Streetwear lines from unexpected brands work best when they poke fun at a fashion industry, which can often take itself too seriously.
Set to launch right on the doorstep of London Fashion Week later this month, the Greggs x Primark clothing collection adeptly flips the narrative of what it takes to look good, enabling those who may traditionally have been excluded from the exclusive world of high-fashion to get their own taste of the action in a way that works for them.’ (The Drum)
GoPro doesn't just sell portable cameras, and Red Bull doesn't just sell energy drinks. Instead, both have established themselves as lifestyle brands - in particular, a lifestyle that's action-packed, adventurous, fearless, and usually pretty extreme. These shared values make them a perfect pairing for co-branding campaigns, especially those surrounding action sports.
To make the partnership work, GoPro equips athletes and adventurers from around the world with the tools and funding to capture things like races, stunts, and action sport events on video -- from the athlete's perspective. At the same time, Red Bull uses its experience and reputation to run and sponsor these events.
"GoPro camera technology is allowing us to complement the programming by delivering new athlete perspectives that have never been seen before," said Sean Eggert, Red Bull's director of sports marketing. The collaboration allows exclusive GoPro content to enhance both companies' growth. (HubSpot)
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