top of page


The 2020s is seeing a continued evolution in retail brand partnerships

Partnerships between brands have long been a proven way in which both entities involved can go for growth – but in our still-young decade, they aren’t always taking the form to which many of us have long been accustomed.

We are, after all, living in an ever-more omnichannel world, and this is being reflected in the nature of many of the brand partnerships that are now being struck.

There are many circumstances and goals that might give rise to lucrative partnerships

With goals ranging from the better retention of existing customers to tapping into previously unchartered markets, brands both online and offline are finding that partnerships with other brands can take on all manner of impactful permutations. Your own brand, for instance, might be an ecommerce-centric one that lacks a brick-and-mortar presence, but which may be interested in renting some of a well-established high-street outlet’s spare retail space for the purposes of pop-up vending. Or perhaps you are the high-street chain with much more physical shopping space than you require in an increasingly digital retail sector? In that case, you might be looking to make some of your physical shop floor available for a complementary brand, or even a brand with a strong reputation in an industry that you eventually wish to move your own brand into. In the meantime, such a high-street brand could enjoy heightened foot traffic to its own main store, thanks to the close association with, and physical proximity to, its partner brand. An example of the latter kind of partnership could be a high-end department store joining forces with a chain of eateries that has a similarly prestigious reputation. Once the partnership with the eatery chain comes to an end, the department store might – having ‘borrowed’ the chain’s existing brand equity – seek to use the vacated space to begin serving food and drink itself.

But a brand partnership being possible doesn’t always make it right

In such a rapidly changing landscape for strategic brand partnerships, it is crucial to acknowledge the dilemmas that can be inherent in determining which agreements to strike. A relatively obvious example of such a dilemma would be the importance of ensuring only genuinely complementary brands join forces. The suitability of a prospective partnership can be largely ascertained by looking to the brands’ respective target audiences, where there should be strong overlap. To return to the above instance, it would make little sense for a high-end department store to partner with an especially budget-minded eatery, as the respective brands would simply be too disparate. For better or worse, brands are judged by the company they keep. So, the aforementioned prestige department store entering into an alliance with an eatery that has a similarly luxurious reputation would make much greater sense.

Talk to Boutique about how we can help you realise the potential of brand partnerships

The possibilities for brands to work together in ways that support the both immediate and longer-term objectives of all parties involved, really are becoming more abundant during the 2020s. It also means that many a brand partnership today is taking creative or outright unexpected turns – as in the case of partnerships that might be geared towards expanding general brand awareness rather than putting forward a specific product, as well as highly interactive and immersive takes on pop-up vending. For a more detailed conversation about what your outlet’s next brand partnership could look like, and the objectives that such arrangements could help your brand accomplish, please do not wait any longer to enquire to the Brand Warrior team.


bottom of page