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When Two Is Better Than One


Good things come to those who wait, but better things come to those who don’t. And especially when they work in pairs.

Co-branding, or brand collaborations occur when two brands or companies combine and work together to create a unique product or service. It allows brands to leverage and reinforce the power and value of each brand and engage with existing and totally new audiences.

Think Nike & Apple, Redbull & GoPro, and Lip Smacker & Dr. Pepper. These partnerships are innovative, fresh and unexpected, which may not necessarily generate sales but instead to raise and increase awareness. Take a look at some of these examples of interesting brand collaborations and how they mutually benefited one another.

Uber & INTI

Last December, Uber Malaysia and INTI International University & Colleges (INTI) initiated a campaign called #MyUberPitch to cultivate entrepreneurial spirit amongst Malaysians. Participants stood a chance of having 15 minutes with a key business leader in Malaysia including Tan Sri Tony Fernandes (Owner and founder, AirAsia Group) and Sulin Lau (Head of Marketing, Maxis) to pitch their idea while riding in an Uber car. The winners of the top three public-voted pitches will receive a fully paid Masters of Business Administration (MBA) programme at INTI International University.

In this partnership, both brands have brought attention to a great cause. Uber was able to bridge the gap between entrepreneurs and potential investors by utilizing their resources and technology. And to help these talented individuals in realizing their dreams, INTI stepped in by providing assistance in scholarships. As quoted by INTI’s CEO Rohit Sharma, it’s in line with what they want to achieve when rethinking education – which is to be a ‘Champion of Change’. Uber gets to reinforce their brand value of being a community-centered company and INTI, an innovator in education.

H&M & Balmain

In 2015, H&M created yet another massive retail success by teaming up with a high-end fashion label, Balmain, following their previous partnerships with other notable designers such as Karl Lagerfeld and Alexander Wang. The catch is of course, limited edition pieces for a limited time only. The campaign had caught fashion lovers all over the world in frenzy. Even in Kuala Lumpur, some queued over 50 hours for launch of Balmain x H&M.

One of the biggest reasons why this launch was all the rage was because the masses were offered a chance to own a luxury item at a more affordable price tag. This in turn has helped both brands in brand building as well as gaining widespread media attention. It strengthens H&M’s brand positioning as a trendy fashion destination while Balmain draws new group of potential customers.

Google & Luxottica

Google Glass has always been perceived as a product for the nerdy crowd but not anymore when Google partnered up with Luxottica, a luxury eyeglass brand. It’s a brilliant partnership because it has the perfect synergy. Google aspires to capitalize on the luxury image and a make a fashion statement with Luxottica. In turn, Luxottica gets to heighten its status as a trendsetter and charge a premium price for its cutting edge technology. Now you get to decide whether the Google Glass is techy yet fashionable, or fashionable yet techy. It works both ways!

Co-branding can be a great advantage for brands and companies to build businesses, so long as it’s a well thought out, planned and executed business strategy. It has to be compatible, just like a marriage. Therefore, it’s advisable to seek brands that share similar goals, values, management styles and philosophies, among many others.

Which brand would you want your company to collaborate with?
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