Different Approaches 

The expert opinions diverge somewhat on two points: One concerns the duration of the cooperation. While a doctrine in co-branding locates long-term cooperation, especially in contrast to cross-selling and co-promotions, some experts see only a precise time limit. 

The second point relates to the brands involved. According to a strict interpretation, it is only co-branding if the brands belong to different companies.  

Preparing for a Co-Branding 

An indispensable prerequisite for co-branding is, of course, a strong brand that gives all companies involved a win-win situation. A few questions should also be clarified in advance: 

  • Does the product or the service of my cooperation partner match my own product or my service? 
  • Will my product experience an increase in value as a result of the collaboration? 
  • Does the customer have an additional benefit through this cooperation? 
  • Do my cooperation partner, and I have the same branding strategy? 
  • Is there a risk that my product will appear less attractive to the consumer and "go under" with the cooperation? 

Everything to do with co-branding should be contractually regulated. 

Co-branding: image transfer for better or for worse 

With all the advantages that successful co-branding offers, this type of cooperation also harbors risks. Despite all the details regulated in the cooperation agreement, there may be inconsistencies in the implementation. Your own brand can be perceived worse than that of the partner or experience no increase in value. In the worst case, it is even "watered down." 

And the image transfer from one brand to another doesn't always have to be positive. If one company generates negative headlines, these also have an indirect effect on the other company.  

If the joint product fails for this reason, not only is the original goal missed but trust is also damaged. This worst-case should be taken into account in the cooperation agreement.