Co-branding is a strategy that links two or more existing brand names to create an identity for a new offering. There are three variations of this approach: Ingredient branding is when one product is integral to the other, like an ice cream brand blended with a well-known liquor. Cooperative branding involves two or more brands sharing a promotion. For example, Hilton Hotels and Hertz might advertise jointly for holiday vacationers. In complementary branding, brands are marketed together to suggest the benefits of using both, like Kellogg’s Pop-Tarts with Smucker’s Jam filling. Co-branding can even involve personalities, such as Ben & Jerry’s ice cream featuring Stephen Colbert on the package.
Executed effectively, co-branding can strategically differentiate products and services, elevate the value and relevance of both brands, and potentially create cross-purchasing customers in the process. The benefits a brand provides is enhanced by a partnership that incorporates best-in-class components or feature-rich products. It can even represent an extension of your business’ values by linking with like-minded or similarly driven organizations, increasing the impact of your brand’s mission as a result.