Great By Association
Great By Association describes the ability to elevate an individual or company reputation by associating it with other people or organisations whose reputation currently surpasses their own.
When Lila Moss becomes a model, or Jaden Smith decides to act and Marcus Jordan picks up basketball, the world takes note. Not because they deserve to be noticed more than the next kid, but because they’re the fortunate benefactors of their parents reputation.
When Simon Motram started the incredibly successful cycling brand Rapha, he received criticism for profiting on cycling’s heritage, despite having little history of their own. Rapha solved this by sponsoring the Sky cycling team. By associating themselves with the best cyclists in the world, no one could question their authenticity.
Tommy Hilfiger gained popularity after the world renowned art director, George Lois, ran a campaign comparing Tommy’s work to that of leading designers; Ralph Lauren and Calvin Klein. By putting Tommy’s clothing in the same mind space as those global brands, his company went from strength to strength.
Make a list of what you want to be known for and then identify people, companies or cultural signifiers that when partnered with you, will lead to an increase in reputation.
WARNING: Make sure to be prepared when doing this. Put in the work to make sure your elevated status is a warranted one and not just smoke and mirrors. There’s nothing people hate more than people who over claim and under deliver.