Flixel, a cinemagraph app that allows users to create living pictures, was having a difficult time breaking into the market when an opportunity put the brand on the map. In 2013, the brand partnered with the TV show “America’s Next Top Model,” and this partnership led to strong brand awareness and the chance to partner with other, more well-known brands. Robert Lendvai, CMO of Flixel, describes the process and how it led to bigger and better marketing opportunities for the company.
(Photo courtesy of Robert Lendvai)
A fortunate opportunity
Flixel’s partnership with “ANTM” began by chance when Tyra Banks and the production team reached out to the company. Lendvai states, “When you’re small and unknown, luck can sometimes be your best friend. Flixel was out of money and on the brink in 2013 when Tyra Banks and the producers of ‘America’s Next Top Model’ reached out to Flixel and some of our competitors. Being found on Google was key. After that, it was all about flying to L.A. and convincing Tyra and her team that we had the cinemagraph tech they needed for Cycle 20. The negotiations were very tough, but we knew we needed to get a partnership done. Thankfully, they ended up going with us, and Tyra even invested in our company. Once Cycle 20 episodes started to air, millions of people and other brands were exposed to the Flixel. That made approaching other partners like Panasonic, A&E and Mercedes much easier. You’d be amazed at who actually watches ‘ANTM.’”
Know your fit
When consumers and brands knew and understood how Flixel could help them, it was easier to promote the brand, and Flixel started gaining more clients. One of the keys to the successful partnership was that the Flixel team knew how their brand could elevate marketing and graphics for a multitude of companies. Lendvai states, “The key to approaching any partner is understanding their business and how your product fits in. What problem do you help them solve? You need to demonstrate how a partnership with you makes their product(s) more compelling. For example, one of our strongest partnerships is with Panasonic Lumix Cameras. They love to have us exhibit with them at key trade shows as our software helps them to demonstrate some of the most advanced features of their cameras. As a small company with a limited marketing budget, we simply would not be able to exhibit at these shows without a partnership like this.” He also noted that the key to making these partnerships successful was to build trust with their clients by constantly producing good work and working with the brands to build the best product.
Product placement can be tricky, but if done successfully, it can launch your brand to a new level. By ensuring that you are active on social media and maintaining SEO, you can increase your company’s chances of being found by people who need your product.
This article was written by Alaina Brandenburger for Small Business Pulse