Putting up a small- to mid-sized pet merchandise shop is often a solo endeavor, but it doesn’t mean that you can’t cooperate with other organizations as you go along your journey as an entrepreneur. Indeed, forming strategic alliances with other brands down the road can help you widen your audience reach.
Co-branding, as this marketing strategy is called, is often used by two or more brands to boost brand awareness, market strength, and brand reputation. The right partnership can help you improve the positive associations with your brand, and it can even compel your existing customers and a new audience to purchase your products and services at a premium.
Does your pet-related business specialize in selling its customizable dog collar collection to a selected clientele? Has your company made a name for itself by providing all-around pet grooming services at an affordable price range? No matter what type of pet product or service you offer, you can use co-branding strategies to your advantage and that of your partner establishment.
The first step in ensuring the success of this project is to find a company that matches the strengths and weaknesses of your business. Then, you and your partner establishment should be able to work together to achieve a mutually satisfactory outcome for your respective livelihoods.
If you’re not sure where to start, don’t worry. Here are some co-branding ideas that pet-related businesses can employ:
Bringing Pets and Technology Together
Many pets have relatively simple needs and wants in life, at least compared to their human companions. However, many modern pet owners also want to use the latest technology to help their pets live their best lives.
As such, co-branding with a technology company isn’t exactly an acute departure from the niche you’ve chosen for your business. After all, many tech companies are also keen on finding out how customers integrate their products into their daily lives, including how they apply tech items to become more responsible pet owners.
Maybe you can partner with an app developer or tech manufacturer that specializes in offering Bluetooth tracking services, then make an effort to appeal to pets and pet owners. Perhaps you can offer pet gear for hiking and trailing that’s designed specifically to be paired with a tracking device, or provide services that complement microchip pet doors for added safety. The possibilities are endless.
Partnering Your Pet Business with a Local Establishment
You don’t have to go far to find a co-branding partner for your pet business, especially if you’re targeting a more local audience. Look at the establishments in your area and determine which ones are open to the idea of producing a line of products that benefit pets and pet owners. Such a move will prove to be mutually beneficial, as you’ll be promoting the values that both of your businesses are known for.
For example, maybe there’s a small brewery near you, and your store offers customized pet apparel. Why not pair up and produce a limited collection of canine shirts that are inspired by the brewery’s products and branding materials? You can also partner with a pet-friendly café near you and provide co-branded pet merchandise that pet parents can use while dining in. Alternatively, you can come up with something that they can purchase for use in their own home.
Bringing Artists In and Releasing Limited-edition Pet Merchandise
Now, your co-branding initiative need not involve another company. You can also partner with an artist in your area and come up with unique designs that you can use to launch a limited collection of pet products.
This setup will allow you to promote your brand to the people who appreciate the said artist’s works. At the same time, your partner will be able to reach out to pet owners who are keen on procuring unique and limited-edition items that highlight their pet’s sense of style.
You and your co-branding partner can come up with a line of fashionable accessories including pet T-shirts, collars, and leashes. Should you wish to target pet parents looking to spruce up their home décor, you can also come up with dog beds, blankets, food and water bowls, and collapsible cups.
If you’re not manufacturing these items yourself, you can ask the artist to come up with exclusive designs for your co-branding partnership. You can then send these designs to a manufacturer who specializes in putting together quality pet merchandise. Once they’re done, you can sell the finished products in your store and promote the artist you worked with. It’s a win-win situation.
There’s more to making a co-branding project work than matching your pet-related business with another company that complements your company’s niche and target market. It’s a must to find a team of like-minded individuals that truly understand the value that each of your businesses brings to the table. Your co-branding partner should also be keen on finding ways to make the project mutually beneficial to your respective commercial endeavors.
To get to this point, from the get-go, you need to know exactly what you want out of this co-branding partnership. You should also determine the aspects of the project that you are adamant about retaining and the elements that you are willing to compromise on. This way, you can determine if the partnership will succeed or not before you start going full steam ahead.