Who are your competitors? What are they doing better than you? How engaging is their social media presence? Are they attracting more business than you? How can you compete? It can often seem like much of our energy is spent on competing. Online tools such as SEM Rush enable us to research competitor keywords and their effectiveness, while even Facebook Insights shares competitor engagement data. There's merit in this, of course, but while focusing on our competitors, it's easy to miss out on an even more powerful strategy: collaboration.
Strategic brand partnerships can open up fresh revenue streams and introduce your product or service to a whole new demographic of consumers. They're mutually beneficial. They leverage the combined expertise of complementary brands.
One famous example of a successful brand partnership is between Hershey's and Betty Crocker, but that is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to potential food collaborations.
Differentiation in the meal kit space
Did you know that June is California Avocado Month? We didn't until a partnership between the California Avocado Commission (CAC) and meal kit giant Chef'd was announced. From June 14th Chef'd will offer 4 California avocado-based meals, as well as information about the CAC and California avocados. For the CAC, this partnership means guaranteed sales and the opportunity to reach a potentially new audience. For Chef'd, it means leveraging the popularity of an ingredient favoured by millennials, many of whom have jumped on board with the meal kits trend. It also means leveraging the popularity of food holidays. Just this week National Biscuit Day trended on Twitter so combining a brand collaboration with a food day, week or month is a smart move. Chef'd is not alone in embracing brand partnerships. Blue Apron has teamed up with Chrissy Teigen to offer recipes from her bestselling cookbook, while Peapod announced plans this year to partner with Campbell’s, Kraft Heinz and Barilla on a new range of meal kits.
Add *your brand* to cart
Shoppable recipes are trending right now. We've waxed lyrical about them on our blog time and time again. Their sudden popularity is not without merit. Consumers are forever in search of fresh recipe inspiration and convenient grocery shopping options, and shoppable recipes combine the best of both. Another benefit of shoppable recipes is that they open up fresh brand partnership options. On grocery store websites, the 'Add ingredients to cart' button on shoppable recipes will generally add own-brand ingredients by default where possible. It's not all bad news for branded products, however. For food brands, it makes sense to partner with grocery retailers to sponsor shoppable recipes. Grocery retailers benefit from the good reputation of established and much-loved brands, and an increased reach when food brands share the content with their existing fans. For food brands, it means increased sales when their branded products are added to the customers' basket by default. For grocery retailers, creating a partnership with a shoppable recipe platform such as Myxx is also a smart move, with benefits that include an increased recipe selection and access to valuable consumer insights via an existing platform.
Innovative partnerships between complementary brands have the power to increase sales, reach and consumer engagement, but it's vital that it is a mutually beneficial arrangement. Both parties need to bring something valuable to the table, and the partnership must make sense. Above all, the collaboration should offer something fresh, new and of value to the consumer.