This is part two of a MultiVerse special series on branding, ahead of our own brand refresh out in the upcoming weeks.

It’s become increasingly popular for brands to form partnerships, resulting in unique creations. From co-branded services to limited edition products, unconventional collaborations are a great way to shake up the status quo, and get consumers excited about both parties involved.

As a branding tool, unconventional collaborations create massive buzz, make your brand stand out from competitors and create a social media content goldmine. Moreover, by aligning your brand with another brand or artist whose values are similar to your own, they can reinforce a brand story.

For our own brand refresh, we pushed ourselves to apply brand values and visuals in a way that people aren’t used to seeing from a marketing and advertising agency. Looking beyond business cards and email signatures, we teamed up with fashion designer Charlotte Barjou.

Here’s a few of our other favorite unconventional collaborations, and what made them so successful.

Covergirl & Lucasfilm

Before the release of the blockbuster hit Star Wars: The Force Awakens in 2015, Lucasfilm (the production company responsible for Star Wars) teamed up with makeup brand Covergirl to create a unique line of makeup inspired by the movie.

The collaboration took fans by surprise, and tapped into a huge market of women Star Wars fans who had traditionally been underserved. This collaboration effectively made two fan bases become one, and introduced Covergirl to consumers who loved the Star Wars films and might not have otherwise considered the brand.


Starbucks & Spotify

Starbucks had long been known as coffee chain with particularly good taste in music. But as technology changed and consumers’ music habits with it, Starbucks saw an opportunity to make the experience even better.

Partnering with the online streaming service Spotify, Starbucks went digital. The chain now uses Spotify music in-house at thousands of shops in the US. Further developing the partnership, Starbucks incorporated a music system within its own mobile app, allowing customers to see what song is currently playing and request what plays next.

The collaboration solidified Starbucks’ position as the best coffee shop to discover music in and set them on the forefront of the industry, far outpacing the entertainment setup of their competitors.

Taco Bell & The Hundreds

When an LA-based men’s accessories brand and the fast food chain Taco Bell joined forces in 2014 to create unique wearables, the internet exploded. Hopping on to the custom sock craze, the collaborations saw limited-edition Mexican food print socks available for purchase on Taco Bell’s online store.

The collaboration captured Taco Bell’s millennial target audience with laser focus. The funky designs and packaging (pairs of socks came wrapped to look like burritos) provided the perfect Instagram moments, and virality ensued.

09 September 2017