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Brand stretch to success

Brand collaborations are a hot topic right now. From fashion to hotels, food to beauty, you can’t open a blog, read a magazine or see an ad without coming across a new collaboration. The most recent and highly publicised of these is Victoria Beckham and Estée Lauder. This is a brand match made in heaven. She’s a designer that has been taken seriously by the fashion world and Estée Lauder is an iconic brand, pioneered by a strong woman. The collection is classic rather than of the moment, again lending itself well to the brand values of Estée Lauder whilst making VB more accessible to a wider audience.

This collaboration however is just another example of well-orchestrated brand innovation for both parties. And it almost doesn’t matter which industry you are in, innovation is king. If done correctly it is the key to profitability, growth and constant interest in your product or service, and lets face it that’s good news all round.

With Neilson’s Global New Product Innovation survey from 2015, stating that 59% of (global) consumers prefer to buy new products from brands familiar to them, innovation makes good business sense.

In short, how do we evaluate good innovation from bad, especially as over half of all new grocery innovations fail in the first year.

BE RELEVANT: In marketing we talk a lot about relevance, however in this case it’s not only relevance to your audience, but relevance to your brand values. Whether you have a brand wheel, an eye, a pyramid, it’s important that all innovation stems from the heart of your brand and is tested against your values, proposition and brand essence. Don’t do innovation for the sake of it, the opportunity needs to add value, not only to the bottom line but for the brand in the eye of the consumer.

CREATE DESIRE: The beauty of limited editions are two fold. Firstly they allow your brand to express a more heightened part of their personality, creating new energy and excitement with the added element of scarcity. Secondly if done right, not only do you get the short term spark around your brand but you also build the brand for the long term. Great limited edition innovation demonstrates a brands ability to connect with new consumers, tapping into a need, an occasion or a cultural trend.

COLLABORATE TO CULTIVATE: From fashion brands to celebrities to hotels to household products, brand collaborations are everywhere. In a practical way it allows brands to grow into new markets or demographics, leveraging each brand’s strengths to develop a unique expression for consumers. Brilliant brand collaborations make perfect sense, are never questioned and provide the perfect halo effect in consumers hearts and minds.

The Mill has worked with many clients looking to craft their brand strategy, an integral place to start before contemplating innovation. If you’d like to discuss brand strategy, brand innovation or just your brand, please get in touch.

Rob Riley