5 Performing Brand Collaborations

Brand Collaborations: 5 Performing Cross-Collaborations in 2023

Charlotte Gillet

Brand collaborations between fashion and sportswear brands have transcended mere strategic business moves. They've evolved into a captivating fusion of creativity, culture, and commerce, providing a distinct means to engage and captivate audiences. McKinsey rightfully highlights this transformation, noting that: “sporting-goods companies are on a similar journey as fashion companies, involving a need to build strong and trusted brands that leverage the direct-to-consumer revolution, collaboration with other brands, and community marketing.” 

In this dynamic setting, measuring the impact of these collaborations on today's consumer profile is fundamental. As Vogue Business had previously highlighted in 2022, the collaboration between sportswear and fashion brands represents a strategic move to tap into the trend-conscious, early adopter audience, particularly Gen Z. Collaborations also allow sportswear companies to extend their reach beyond traditional athletic demographics and delve into the realms of fashion-forward consumers who seek innovation and style. 

At Launchmetrics, we’ve already sought to uncover the power and dynamics of brand collaborations, by diving into notable partnerships, such as Jimmy Choo x Timberland and Supreme x Nike, yielding profound insights into their media influence and significance.  Today, our focus sharpens on the latest fashion x sportswear collaborations and their recent performances. Conducting an in-depth examination of their winning strategies and a comparative evaluation of their impact

This blog offers a detailed breakdown of the Media Impact Value™ (MIV®) achieved, providing a window into print, online, and social media exposure, as well as overall impact. This analysis extends beyond data, venturing into the strategic foundations and creative dynamics that propelled these collaborations to triumph. By deciphering the essence of these partnerships, our goal is to arm brands with actionable insights, enabling them to navigate this complicated landscape with precision.

Fashion Week Picture

Performing Brand Collaborations Ranking

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Which 5 Brand Collaborations have been Selected?

This insight provides a benchmarking analysis of five successful fashion and sportswear brand collaborations between January and August 2023, using our proprietary algorithm, Media Impact Value™ (MIV®), to measure and benchmark the impact of all media placements and mentions across various voices during the selected period.

  1. Nike x Martine Rose
  2. Ganni x New Balance
  3. Sandy Liang x Salomon
  4. Carhartt WIP x Sacai
  5. Beautiful People x Mizuno

The infographic below displays the ranking of the five selected brand collaborations and the number of placements they had between January and August 2023. These placements factor in social media posts and articles related to specific search queries, as well as consumer interactions with posts, such as tags and comments. It provides a clear picture of some brand's performance in comparison to others in the industry, allowing you to identify opportunities for growth and maximize your impact.

5 Performing Brand Collaborations

Channel-Mix Benchmark for the Brand Collaborations

This graph below represents the Channel Mix Benchmark by MIV® for the five brand collaborations.

Brand Collaborations Channel-Mix

Are you seeking to enhance your brand's marketing strategy and amplify its visibility? Look no further than the Channel Mix—a predominant metric that unveils the channels through which consumers encounter your brand. Whether it's Online, Instagram, Facebook, or even Chinese platforms like Weibo and WeChat, this metric offers a percentage breakdown of each channel's impact on your brand's MIV®. 
By understanding your Channel Mix, you can gain a strategic advantage by pinpointing the channels your competitors leverage and determine the ones you should prioritize to maximize your brand's exposure.

Nike x Martine Rose

The collaboration between Nike and Martine Rose took the lead in our brand collaborations ranking, showcasing a significant achievement within the industry. The Martine Rose Spring/Summer 2024 runway show marked a notable event, drawing inspiration from female football players and integrating gender-neutral traditional tailoring—a thoughtful blend of sport and style.

Between January and August, coverage of this collaboration garnered substantial attention, translating to a noteworthy $5.5M in MIV® across a total of 1.5K placements.

As expected, the US, China, and the UK emerged as the primary markets where this collaboration flourished. The US claimed the top spot, contributing a notable $2.3M to the cumulative MIV®. China closely followed, showcasing a strong presence and generating $881K in MIV®, followed by the UK, which accounted for $671K in MIV® due to the brand's origin and prominence.

This collaboration showcased a global reach, gaining coverage across the Americas, EMEA, and APAC regions. One notable attribute was the strategic deployment of diverse marketing channels on an international scale.

Examining the Channel Mix, it's evident that Online Media and Instagram played pivotal roles as the primary platforms. Online, in particular, demonstrated its influence by accumulating an impressive $2.2M in MIV®, closely trailed by Instagram with $1.9M in MIV®.

Nike x Martine Rose

Analyzing the voices that drove the conversation, Media Voice HYPEBEAST US led the pack, amassing a substantial $432K in MIV®. Other influential voices, including Complex Sneakers in the US, HYPEBEAST in Hong Kong, and Highsnobiety in Germany, contributed significantly with MIV® figures of $161K, $130K, and $107K, respectively.

On social media, Instagram and Facebook were key platforms for engagement, complemented by a robust presence on Chinese social media platforms such as WeChat and Weibo. Notably, Nike's Instagram activity achieved exceptional results, with the top placement garnering $258K in MIV®, followed closely by a second placement at $247K in MIV®. Significant Media placements on Instagram, featuring Kendrick Lamar on Complex Sneaker’s Instagram post and Hypebeast US, also generated substantial MIV® of $161K, underscoring the platform's impact.

For brand collaborations seeking to maximize their reach and impact, it's imperative to extend beyond conventional Media and Owned Media Voices. Leveraging the influence of Celebrity or Influencer Voices can unlock new levels of visibility and audience engagement. Implementing a cross-Voice strategy, seamlessly blending Owned media with a Celebrity or Influencer Voice, such as the approach seen with Kendrick Lamar and Complex Sneakers, is a valuable tactic to amplify market performance and reach a broader, engaged audience.

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Ganni x New Balance

The Ganni x New Balance collaboration achieved a commendable second place in our brand collaboration ranking, making a striking appearance at Ganni's Spring/Summer 2024 runway during Copenhagen Fashion Week. Notably, this collaboration also occurred in the previous year. Analyzing its performance from January to August of this year, the collaboration garnered an impressive $2.1M in MIV® through 659 placements. This triumph underscores the critical role of analyzing a brand's performance when devising an effective marketing strategy.

Ganni x New Balance

Mirroring the success of Nike x Martine Rose, the Ganni x New Balance collaboration excelled in the American market. The United States notably contributed a significant share to the brand's MIV®, amounting to an impressive $795K. However, the collaboration's impact was not confined to the US; it showcased a robust presence and influence in China, generating $334K in MIV® as well as in the US where it generated $164K in MIV®. The European markets of Germany and Denmark also proved to be lucrative, contributing substantially to the brand's MIV®.

In terms of Channels, a parallel can be drawn with the Nike x Martine Rose collaboration. Online channels emerged as the powerhouse, surpassing others in MIV®, with an impressive $875K generated. The collaboration's extensive coverage on Instagram was also significant, generating $491K in MIV®. This highlights the potential of social media platforms as considerable grounds for audience engagement, brand awareness, and fostering brand loyalty.

The success of the Ganni x New Balance collaboration can be attributed to its strategic placements. Some noteworthy examples include a high-impact Instagram post by Sneakernews in the US, generating $59.0K in MIV®. Strong performances were also observed from Hypebeast in the US ($43.9K MIV®) and ELLE Magazine ($41.0K MIV®), among others. In terms of Online coverage, a notable placement by Hello! in the UK stood out, with the article generating $31.5K in MIV®.

Ultimately, the Ganni x New Balance collaboration has effectively capitalized on Online and Social Media platforms to gain extensive exposure. To further expand its reach and enhance market performance, the brand could leverage Celebrity or Influencer Voices through a cross-Voice strategy. This approach enhances the credibility and effectiveness of placements, propelling the brands to new heights of success.

Sandy Liang x Salomon

Securing the third position in our brand collaboration ranking, the Sandy Liang x Salomon collaboration also stands out prominently. This collaboration has been another one transcending through time, starting with the New York-based designer's Spring/Summer 2021 collection. Today, the collaboration remains a significant entity, showcasing a newly rekindled relationship in 2023.

Evidenced by a substantial $1.4M in MIV® across 377 placements, the collaboration possesses a robust market presence and considerable consumer appeal. Particularly noteworthy is its performance in the US, where it established a stronghold, contributing the majority of its MIV® at an impressive $599K. Following closely, China contributed significantly as well, generating $292K in MIV®, with Germany showing promise at $141K in MIV®.

Sandy Liang x Salomon

The collaboration's MIV® performance was primarily propelled by the Online Channel, delivering an impressive $585K in MIV®. This accomplishment underscores the brand's proficiency in leveraging Media Voice to increase visibility and brand awareness. While Instagram emerged as the second-best performing Channel with $389K in MIV®, its profitability was lower due to fewer placements that, nevertheless, had a higher impact and reach. To optimize their Social Media strategy, the brands could diversify and maximize the potential of various Voices to amplify exposure and reach.

Among the top-performing online placements, Hypebeast in the US stood out, generating an impressive $74.6K in MIV® from a single placement. Additionally, the collaboration reaped benefits from successful placements by Owned Media Voice Sandy Liang, with the top placement generating $34.8K in MIV®. Instagram and YouTube were consistent platforms for top placements, but notable Online articles by Marie Claire in France ($30.0K in MIV®), GQ US ($16.1K in MIV®), and GQ Style US ($14.9K in MIV®), also featured in the top ten.

To expedite growth, the collaboration can strategically leverage other Voices, such as Celebrity and Influencer Voices. Aligning with notable figures who endorse the brand to their fans and followers enables the brands to reach a broader and younger audience. With its global reach and strategic approach, the collaboration maintained a strong MIV® performance and is poised for sustained growth in the highly competitive fashion and sportswear market.

Carhartt WIP x Sacai

The Carhartt WIP x Sacai collaboration is a notable presence in our collaboration ranking. It's essential to highlight Sacai's active engagement in sportswear collaborations this year. Sacai, alongside the introduction of new Nike sneakers in FW23, also initiated a collaborative venture with Carhartt WIP, further solidifying the sportswear brands’ association with fashion labels. This collaboration achieved an impressive $917K in MIV® across 524 placements from January to August.

In terms of global performance, the collaboration has successfully established a robust presence across multiple regions. China emerged as a highly profitable location, contributing $253K in MIV®, closely followed by the US with $217K in MIV®, and Japan with $136K in MIV®. This success underscores the collaboration's ability to execute effective far-reaching global strategies. By amplifying its marketing initiatives and strategically focusing on these lucrative regions, the brand can further enhance its MIV® and consolidate its market position.

The collaboration has harnessed the influential power of the Media Voice, particularly through the Online Channel. The brand's strategic and widespread use of this channel on an international scale has significantly contributed to its success, generating $332K in MIV®, followed by Instagram with $234K in MIV® and Facebook with $177K in MIV®. Notably, Chinese Social Media platforms also performed exceptionally well, validating the collaboration's success in the region.

Another influential factor in the collaboration's success is the Owned Media Voice. Among the top placements, a standout example is an Instagram post by Carhartt WIP in the US, generating an impressive $46.9K in MIV®, followed by another post by the brand which garnered $26.1K in MIV®. Additionally, high-performing placements include a Facebook post by Hypebeast in Hong Kong, generating $22.7K, and Hypebeast in the US, also on Facebook, generating $22.3K. Sacai's Instagram placement also made it to the top ten, generating a significant MIV® of $19.2K.

By leveraging Media Voice and exploring new opportunities on various social media platforms, both brands can expand their reach, connect with a broader audience, and elevate their market performance to unprecedented heights.

Beautiful People x Mizuno

Beautiful People, in collaboration with Japanese sportswear brand Mizuno, continues to redefine the aesthetics in sneaker culture. This partnership is rooted in the concept that "the ultimate in beauty lies in function," seamlessly blending Beautiful People's minimalist design ethos with Mizuno's athletic technology. Their collaboration secured the fifth in our selected brand collaborations ranking, with a total MIV® of $213K across 94 placements.

Beautiful People x Mizuno Collaboration

Evaluating the market performance, the collaboration's coverage stood out significantly in the APAC region, with the US and France being the only exceptions that also contributed to its total MIV®. Notably, China emerged as a standout market, generating an impressive $73.0K in MIV®, followed by the US with $59.0K in MIV® and Japan with $49.8K in MIV®. Understanding the market reach and identifying lucrative markets for print, media, and social media coverage in brand collaborations requires monitoring and predictive analysis. A data-driven and consumer-centric approach empowers brands to pinpoint the most promising markets for their collaboration, enabling tailored strategies and maximizing the impact of their marketing and PR efforts.

In terms of the Channel mix, the collaboration's success in achieving a total of $213K in MIV® can be attributed to its robust performance Online, where it generated $93.4K in MIV®, notably on Weibo ($51.3K in MIV®) and Facebook ($48.7K in MIV®). Surprisingly, Instagram did not play a prominent role, suggesting an opportunity for expansion in the collaboration's reach.

Analyzing placement performance, the collaboration's most successful placements were by Hypebeast in the US on Facebook, generating an impressive $22.7K in MIV®, closely followed by Hypebeast in Hong Kong on Facebook, also generating $22.7K in MIV®. The top-performing Owned Media Beautiful People placement, specifically on Instagram, generated $1.6K in MIV®. Although this collaboration displayed a slightly lower impact compared to previous collaborations, it's essential to note that it also featured significantly fewer placements, potentially influencing the reach and engagement.

Nevertheless, there remains an opportunity for the collaboration to extend its reach and connect with a broader audience by harnessing the power of social media even more effectively and engaging with other influential Voices like Influencers, Key Opinion Leaders (KOLs), or Celebrities. A strategic integration of both social media and online channels can amplify the collaboration's presence, drive engagement, and ultimately strengthen its market performance.

How to Measure the Performance of your Brand Collaboration

This analysis is designed to enhance your understanding of some effective marketing strategies. It sheds light on the tactics employed by fashion and sportswear brands to optimize their global brand collaboration performance. 

Are you curious about how your brand collaboration measures up to others in the industry? To gain valuable insights and evaluate your campaigns' effectiveness while identifying areas for improvement, consider delving into your brand's performance analytics. 

If this insight has piqued your interest, take the first step in evaluating your brand collaboration campaigns today by clicking the link below.

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