by Emily Coogan

Business is collaboration; collaboration is business. Allow us to explain.
Brand awareness requires lasting connections with your customers, generally through distinctive retail experiences that encourage engagement. Joining forces with a business or person that aligns with your own branding, values, and mission can produce a unique angle that reaps results for each side. Whether it's collaboration with a brand or partnership with a celebrity, the same goal remains: to generate buzz and increase exposure amongst a wider audience.
By combining your creative power with that of another person or brand, the door is open for each party to access new markets. Pooling resources and expertise allows for greater opportunities to expand brand awareness and increase your reach across customers who meet the criteria of your target audience.
E-commerce operates globally, meaning the world is your collaborative oyster. It's hugely important for both parties to be compatible on a fundamental level. Ideally, the two parties are not in competition with one another and instead act as symbiotic partners. This strategy is perfect for updating or realigning your brand image, entering a new market, launching a new product, or enhancing your messaging to attract ideal customers. Leveraging the power of business and brand collaboration can even further your mission or corporate social responsibility initiatives.
Collaborative marketing differs from influencer marketing, which is a quick transaction for purely promotional purposes. Instead, collaborative strategy presents opportunities for both sides to benefit and amplify their appeal on a creative level.
Teamwork makes the dream work - the proof is in the pudding.

Merchants of the Sun x Sam Corlett

Gold Coast-based jewellery label Merchants of the Sun and actor Sam Corlett pooled their talents to produce a capsule of jewellery pieces featuring hand-drawn symbols by Corlett. The duo consolidated artistic vision and mutual values to create unique pieces and raise money for the Cancer Council. By collaborating with a high-profile name such as Corlett, Merchants of the Sun expanded their reach in a meaningful and considered way.

Levi's x Google

Heralding a new era of smart garments is Google's Jacquard project. The initiative seamlessly integrates technology into everyday fashion items, including a Levi's trucker jacket. Woven into the cuffs of the jacket is the Jacquard device allowing the wearer to answer calls, toggle sound, activate voice controls, receive alerts and perform other actions on the go. Although an unexpected coupling, this collaboration attracts intrigue as an example of where fashion and innovation collide.


Google Jacquard wearable technology in a Levi's denim jacket

Nike x Uninterrupted

A true meeting of the athletic minds features Nike and Uninterrupted, the media platform and brainchild of basketball personalities LeBron James and Maverick Carter. The collaboration involved a campaign titled "More Than__", inviting wearers to share their voice and draw on a pair of Nike's classic Air Force 1 sneakers. Wearers receive two sharpies, blue and black, to customise their sneakers, empowering voices and personal messages as endorsed by Uninterrupted. The combined cultural influence of the parties creates a unique and enticing collaboration, simultaneously opening a powerful discourse.

Nike and Uninterrupted collaboration customisable sneakers

The North Face x Gucci

A match made in heaven is The North Face x Gucci collaboration, producing an outdoors-inspired collection of everything from puffer jackets to hiking boots, to tents and sleeping bags. Unconventional yet undeniably effective, this range attracted attention from the audience of both cross-cultural icons. The collaborative project explored fashion and physical expedition, capitalising on the world's collective yearning for adventure post-pandemic. The collaboration prioritised sustainability to combine luxury with functionality, executed in a high-fashion and high-profile way.

Gabrielle Penfold x Oroton

Fashion is wearable art, a notion taken to the next level by Sydney-based artist Gabrielle Penfold and Australian heritage brand, Oroton. The collaboration involved a line of silk scarves featuring painted Summer scenescapes. Oroton's decision to platform a local artist and develop pieces entirely unique to their brand is an effective melding of talent and creativity, producing a highly covetable collection.

Oroton silk scarf with pastel artwork by Gabrielle Penfold

If you enjoyed this piece, make your next read: A Lesson in Digital marketing: Gossip Girl 2.0.

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