You’ve seen it before… a well-known brand that slaps their logo on all of the same t-shirts, caps and predictable seasonal product categories. Licensing box, checked.
Except, that’s really just merchandising. And while merchandising is certainly a form of licensing, it’s not exactly a tool for growing your brand or your business over the long term. For brands with strong brand equity, this “one size fits all” approach to licensing is ineffective, if not risky. It may raise awareness, but it lacks the strategic focus needed to grow and sustain a successful corporate licensing program.
Brand licensing is an incredibly powerful business tool. To establish your brand as a viable trademark to license into categories outside of your core business, brand awareness is important but there are plenty of other factors you need to consider when looking at licensing to grow your business. Is your brand aspirational? Is the equity in your brand clearly definable? From a retail perspective, is there an unmet need in the market? Is there shelf space for new, branded products in the categories you would target?
It is undeniable that strong brand awareness is essential for licensing, even if that awareness is limited to niche markets. However, with growing competition and shifts in market trends, it is equally necessary to set up your brand for the strongest success by approaching licensing with a strategic focus to grow your brand, increase consumer touch points and build new, meaningful revenue streams. Often that requires both quantitative and qualitative research to validate opportunities and avoid risk.
To build out a strategic brand licensing program that best fits your company, you must have a deep understanding of your brand, where its core equity lies and your unique value proposition to consumers. Once you’ve validated the opportunities against the market and have a clear vision for your brand’s extension opportunities, then you’re ready to get started building a successful program that will enhance the equity of your brand and even grow your core business. Otherwise you’re just selling t-shirts and caps.
To learn more about the ways a strategic global licensing program can help grow your business, visit our Solutions Page.
Sign up to receive LMCA’s Quarterly Licensing Newsletter: