Branding 24 Jul 2019

Cobranding: Revitalizing business through alliances

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The recipe for friendship seems clear: Tolerance, trust, compatibility, sincerity, availability and a pinch of luck. Alliances between brands are no different. In this article, we will analyze the key components to a sound friendship between two brands.

From concentration to cooperation

But what is it that leads brands to cooperate? The decrease in life cycle, new demand composition, adaptation to change, shared knowledge and joint creativity, together with technology and companies’ total globalization, have permanently increased brands’ innovation due to the higher level of market competitiveness. But quite frequently, transformation takes place so fast that it outgrows internal capacities, which forces companies to look outside their walls and see the market as an opportunity to relate to others, not just as an adverse environment. Cobranding sets forth a framework that is an alternative to business’ focus on mergers and acquisitions, which are usually too expensive.

From technical model to cultural alliance

Two basic aspects must shape an alliance between two brands, one technical and one cultural. From the technical point of view, we must accept that brand coexistence as a process, not just a creative idea with impressive content. From the cultural perspective, the main question is how to build trust between two cultural identities, which are usually quite different. In an artificially generated partnership environment, trust and respect play critical roles.

Cobranding has a direct impact on business development, improving companies’ competitive positions, reinforcing differentiation and opening doors to diversification. Furthermore, it builds on company brands, helping them add new attributes related to their images and territories while improving visibility and strengthening their capacities to appeal to customers.

In short, the need to adopt new business, technological and digital models demands companies and their managers seek support from outside their organizations from those who can provide new skills and capabilities.

Carlos Magro Martínez-Illecas
Director of the Branding area at LLYC in Spain
Consultant expert in branding. He previously worked at the global brands consulting firm Interbrand for 12 years, where he led brand management and creativity projects for large consumer clients and large clients in the corporate area. For eight years, he also worked as art director for global advertising agencies such as Leo Burnett and Euro RSCG. Over the course of his career, he has worked for more than 60 national and international leading clients from more than 14 different sectors. He promotes branding as a speaker and professor for universities and business schools in the area of design, fashion and marketing. He also writes pieces for specialized media.
David González Natal
Senior Director of the Consumer Engagement area at LLYC in Spain
David earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the Complutense University of Madrid and Global CCO from ESADE. He has worked for media such as El Mundo and Cadena Ser, and in the press department of the cultural organization Círculo de Bellas Artes in Madrid. Before heading the Consumer Engagement area in LLYC, he directed national communication campaigns for brands such as Heineken, Red Bull, Movistar and Ron Barceló for seven years as Senior Coordinator at the Actúa Comunicación agency. As global manager of the area, he coordinates eight markets in LLYC and has directed emblematic projects for Campofrío, Coca- Cola, Telefónica, Gonvarri, Bezoya and Sacyr. He has received more than 50 awards for his projects, including a Cannes Lions award and numerous Gold Stevie Awards. Natal is a storytelling lecturer for many national master’s programs.
Bárbara Ruiz
Manager of the Branding area at LLYC in Spain
Specialized in the field of branding. She previously worked in different areas of different companies (finance, marketing and foreign trade) which allows her to adopt a holistic vision of brands understanding it as a promise of value that the whole company has to make real through the brand experience. She has taken part in strategic projects working in consulting firms for brands such as CaixaBank, LaLiga, Hitachi Cooling & Heating, Orange, Riu Hotels & Resorts, Foster's Hollywood, Licor 43, Pernod Ricard, Ron Barceló, among others. She has a Master's degree in Brand Management from MSMK, has studied at renowned universities such as Fordham University (New York, USA), Marquette University (Milwaukee), Johannes Kepler University (Linz, Austria) and Boston University (Boston, USA) as well as at ETEA (Córdoba, Spain) where she graduated in Business Administration.

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