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6 Tricks to Find Your Ideal Branding Partner The truest and final test of any partner has to be in the quality of their being. In an industry like branding and marketing, the evidence of success is laid bare in the open

By Shashwat Das

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"The blood of the covenant is thicker than the water of the womb."

We have often heard parents, teachers and elders warning us of the company we keep. Have you ever wondered why? Mother experience herself might have shown us how some friends push us to the top with their wisdom, wit, and knowledge while some others drag us through the muk. There is a lot that connects business and our social settings. After all at our animalistic core, we are social and in need of one another to thrive. It is therefore of utmost importance that we choose to associate ourselves with the most positive fits for our business if we want to succeed.

Here are a Few Yardsticks to Help You Find Your Ideal Branding Partner.

1. Understand what You Actually Need!

Waste not, want not. Before you enter the process of looking for a partner, understand exactly what you need. Very often 360-degree agencies will swoon and sell you on their multidimensional approaches, making you greedy for more than you require. This might waste your time, energy and resources. In a world where even a general physician asks you to see a specialist, do not wait for a life or death moment to consult one for your business. Truly understand what you need and look to those who ace those areas.

2. Ask Around!

If you really want something, the best thing to do is ask. Conversing with your peers or your possible partner's other clients, and reading reviews will help you accurately gauge whether a particular partner is right for you. Do remember, however, that everyone makes mistakes and context is always important before separating the good from the bad.

3. See if They Actually Know You!

Regardless of whether you've just started out or are an MNC, you will identify within certain categories. Your ideal partner should be a specialist in your category. He/she might have multiple other start-ups as clients, have a focus in the FMCG market or just have the relevant experience where you are. The devil, however, is in the details. Look at how your partner prices his offerings basis you! Understand whether his/her value proposition is tailored for your segment and look for areas where it is customized just for you. This will give you some of the best insight into how you stand to gain in an association with any branding partner

4. See if They Truly Understand You!

Did you know that according to a study by KPMG, 83per cent of mergers fail? According to that same study, corporate culture clashes stood out as a reason for such failure. The same goes while selecting any partner. See if your possible partner values the same things as you and believes in the same things as you do. While it is possible to negotiate and compromise on culture and yet get amazing results, for the highest possible success, it makes the most sense to collaborate with branding agencies who share your culture and belief system.

5. Trust Your Gut!

According to the 2018 study by Psychology Today, love at first sight is an actual thing! Every now and then when you retire to the confines of your safe space and reflect on your day, week or month, there might be a conversation, person or deal that makes you feel very comfortable. A moment that plays on repeat and makes you think to yourself, "Yeah. This feels right." According to studies by the World Economic Forum, your gut or intuition is a repository of all your brain's learnings. It contains all the mistakes you've learned, right from when you were a child. Always trust it.

6. Success!

The truest and final test of any partner has to be in the quality of their being. In an industry like branding and marketing, the evidence of success is laid bare in the open. Look for awards and recognition. Look for client testimonials and success stories

"A man is known by the company he keeps."

While choosing a branding partner, this line holds more weight than ever. Your branding partner will play a key role in helping you and your business reach where you want to take it. Brand, the mass projection of you are, is the most important thing needed to take your business from a 10000 dollar business to a 10000 million dollar one and you don't even have to look far for examples of that. Consider Nike, Adidas or even Gary Vee who even propagates taking the upper hand and firing those who don't fit in your firm to set the brand and culture straight. Choosing your correct partner is thus of critical importance and all we're saying is you look for the ones who truly got your back.

Shashwat Das

Founder- Almond Branding

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