What is Ingredient Branding? – True Definition with Examples 

gucci belt on a table representing ingredient branding
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Have you heard of ingredient branding? If not, you’re in the right place to find answers. In this article, we’ll explain what it is and why it’s important to your brand.

Marketing plays an important role in any business venture. If you’ve been running a business for some time, you’ll agree that the key to sales and brand awareness lies in the marketing channels you employ.

While traditional marketing strategies were once prevalent, business landscape has transitioned over the years with the rise of digital marketing channels. This has changed the way we do business.

More so, businesses are now embracing different branding technique. Such as ingredient branding, to enhance their brand reach and market potential.

When choosing this branding strategy, there are certain factors that come into play. This article will explain why you should incorporate this strategy into your marketing strategy and the factors that make this possible.

What is Ingredient Branding?

Ingredient branding is a marketing strategy in which a company promotes a specific ingredient or component in another product of a separate brand. This is distinct from co-branding, which is collaboration between two brands. In this branding strategy, the ingredient brand is the dominant brand, and the other product is simply a carrier for the ingredient.

For example, Intel is a well-known ingredient brand. The company’s “Intel Inside” campaign helped to make Intel a household name and to position its processors as the gold standard in computer performance. Here, the ingredient brand (Intel) is promoted as a separate entity from the product (the computer).

Ingredient branding is just another form of marketing strategy that businesses use these days to stay ahead of the competition strategically. It involves building on the credibility of an existing brand while using the opportunity to promote sales and increase the customer base of the partnering brand.

How Does Ingredient Branding Work?

Ingredient branding is a marketing strategy that uses the multi-level marketing model to promote the scalability of a particular product component. The aim is to increase the awareness of a particular brand.

This strategy builds on the credibility and trust of an existing brand. Instead of being sold independently, the marketing of the new product is enhanced by the ingredient brand, hence making such product attractive to buyers.

For example, Oreo and Cadbury, the two brands collaborated to create a chocolate bar that included pieces of Oreo cookies. This appealed to fans of both brands and helped to increase sales for both companies.

For Oreo, ingredient branding with Cadbury helped to improve its brand reach and market presence. Cadbury’s existing impact in the industry helped to boost Oreo’s sales, and the new product introduced Oreo to new customers who were interested in trying different flavors.

Although this is just one of many ways brands use ingredient branding in their marketing strategy. Another way this strategy is used is in the process of using the logo of a known brand to advertise your brand, with permission, of course.

This branding strategy is a great way to increase the brand awareness of a budding brand while leveraging on the existing reputation of the ingredient brand. In either case discussed above, both brands benefits on this strategy in different ways.  Can this branding strategy help your business to scale up? Lets find out.

Can Ingredient Branding Help Your Business?

If you own an established brand with a known reputation, you can be the bedrock of other budding brands by offering your branded ingredient to help these brands. By doing this, you stand to gain more exploration and customer reach in the marketing process.

Otherwise, As a growing business, looking to improve your customer reach and brand credibility, you can reach out to established brands and build on their existing loyalty.

Whatever the approach, before you embark on ingredient branding strategy, the first thing you should consider is the compatibility of the products in view. For example, many SaaS companies integrate Buffer into their management system. As a strategy to increase their product use. This strategy both improves the efficiency of their product while promoting it to a larger audience, using the Buffers brand Image. 

Hence, whether you own a startup business or you are an established brand, you can employ the ingredient branding strategy to increase your brand reach and awareness.

Need our Assistance for your LOE/SOP? Contact Fasthire today.
Need our Assistance for your LOE/SOP? Contact Fasthire today.

Examples of Ingredient Branding

Although i already mentioned Tide detergent, the Intel Insider campaigns and a few others. There are so many brand leveraging the ingredient branding strategy to boost brand visibility while exploring greater market reach and overall market growth. Some of these brands are 

  • Intel (e.g., chips inside HP computers)
  • NutraSweet (e.g., aspartame in Diet Pepsi)
  • Arm & Hammer ( e.g as used in  cat litter, toothpaste, etc )
  • Dolby (Sound audio technology used in TVs, headphones, and speakers)
  • Kevlar ( Synthetic fiber used for bulletproof vests, tires, and ropes)
  • Microban (e.g., antimicrobial technology in phone cases, cutting boards, and toothbrushes)
  • Scotchgard (e.g, water resistant fabric protector used in production of clothing, shoes, and furniture)
  • Retsyn in Certs breath mints

Ingredient Branding vs Co Branding

Ingredient branding and co-branding are both marketing strategies that involve two or more brands working together. Although, there are some key differences between the two of them. Let’s glimpse it into it.

Ingredient branding, as addressed earlier, is a type of co-branding where one brand is featured as an ingredient (the superior component ) in another brand’s product. For example, Just as Intel is used as an  ingredient brand featured in many computers. When you see an Intel chip in a computer, you know that the computer is using a high-quality processor.

However, Co-branding is a broader term that refers to any type of collaboration between two or more brands. Co-branding can take many forms, such as:

  • Product co-branding, where two brands team up to create a new product. For example, Coca-Cola and Oreo partnership to create a limited-edition cookie flavored Coke.
  • Brand licensing, where one brand allows another brand to use its name, logo, or other intellectual property and 
  • Joint marketing, where two brands collaborate on a marketing campaign.

The major difference between ingredient branding and co-branding is that it is more focused on the ingredient brand, while co-branding is more focused on the overall product or marketing campaign. The aim of both is to improve and increase brand awareness and product distribution to a wider and new market.


Branding is a wholistic term that can transform the way your brand is seen by your target audience. With ingredient branding strategy, any business can strive in this ever competitive market. As a budding brand, all you need to get started is build a reputation worthy off a acceptance and ensure you have something tangible and beneficial to offer. At the end, both you (the budding brand) and the ingredient brand with benefit from the offer. Do not sleep on this.


What is an example of ingredient co-branding?

Example of Ingredient Co-Branding: Ingredient co-branding refers to a marketing strategy where two or more brands collaborate by using a specific ingredient from one brand prominently in a product offered by another brand. One example of ingredient co-branding is “Intel Inside” campaign, where Intel, a semiconductor manufacturer, partnered with various computer manufacturers to prominently display the “Intel Inside” logo on the computer’s packaging. 

What is the difference between ingredient branding and co-branding?

Difference between Ingredient Branding and Co-Branding: The main difference between ingredient branding and co-branding lies in their focus and execution:

  • Ingredient Branding: In this strategy, the emphasis is on highlighting the specific component or ingredient of a product as a standalone brand. The ingredient’s name and reputation are promoted separately, and its presence is often communicated directly to consumers. The primary goal is to create recognition and demand for the ingredient itself, which can lead to an increased preference for products that contain it.
  • Co-Branding: Co-branding:   involves a collaboration between two or more established brands, and the emphasis is on creating a new product or service that incorporates the strengths and values of each participating brand. The goal here is to combine the unique. attributes of the brands involved to create a synergistic offering that appeals to a broader consumer base. The individual brands may still be recognizable within the co-branded product, but the focus is on the combined value proposition.

What is the meaning of ingredient branding?

Branding is a holistic term that can transform the way your brand is seen by your target audience. With ingredient branding strategy, any business can thrive in this ever-competitive market. As a budding brand, all you need to get started is build a reputation worthy of acceptance and ensure you have something tangible and beneficial to offer. In the end, both you (the budding brand) and the ingredient brand will benefit from the offer. Don’t sleep on this.

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