We recently hosted a "speed networking" event at the Wefunder office with Parsnip and KitchenTown. We asked Sally Rogers and Erin Lenhardt, the masterminds behind Parsnip, to tell us a little more about what they're up to.
Q1: What does Parsnip do?
Parsnip connects brands with partnership opportunities. Parsnip members use the tool to find values-aligned partners for giveaways, newsletter exchanges, guest blog posts, in-store demos, gift baskets or product placement at events.
Q2: Why did you launch the company?
As customers, we found that we both just love when the right brands work together (think: Red Bull x GoPro). And we find it both annoying and a missed opportunity for the brand when the wrong ones partner up (think: Crayola x Clinique). So we set out to make it easier to find the right partner that has shared values and complementary products, and not just rely on the old fashioned who ya’ know method — a win for the brand and the customer.
Q3: What makes a great partnership?
We think about “like-mindedness” a lot in the making of a great partnership. The brands need to share common values, exhibit complementary product use cases, and share a similar target audience. But what that really means is the best partnerships rely on a deep understanding of the customer. The right partners can be found when brands put themselves into the how, why, and what their customers do with, and appreciate about, their product — those are all possible alignment opportunities with other brands.
Q4: And where do partnerships most often go wrong?
It sounds simple, but even the best brand partnerships can go wrong if expectations aren’t clear from the beginning. Confirming who is doing what, the timeline, the creative work needed, etc. sets the partnership off on the right foot and prevents any misunderstandings further down the road.
Q5: What's the most amazing business partnership you have ever heard of?
Target x Isaac Mizrahi (an American fashion designer) brought designs that had previously been locked away behind limited access and a high price tag to a customer base that appreciated a good deal and something unique.
Q6: And what's an example of a terrible partnership?
Target x Neiman Marcus, on the other hand, missed the mark with high prices, less cohesion as a designer line (multiple designers were showcased in the collaboration), sloppiness in presentation, and poor customer service (the list goes on).
Q7: What's one of your favorite examples of a partnership formed through Parsnip?
We love that Moonlit Skincare is working on a SXSW activation with Outdoor Voices, and wanted fun snacks and drinks in blue packaging to bring the event to life and stay on-brand for the two anchor partners. They know their Insta-happy attendees will love the ‘shades of blue’ approach to the event!
Q8: How can people get involved with Parsnip?
We’re always looking for more consumer goods companies that see the value in building their businesses with the right partners at their side.
Sign up now at: parsnip.me/beta
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