Monday, 6 August 2018

What makes co-branding successful?

Co-branding . . . when a product carries two (or more) brands. 

One of the classic co-branding categories is the credit card. For years, companies like MasterCard and Visa have offered co-branding opportunities. Virgin Group co-brands credit cards with MasterCard, for instance. American Express co-brands a credit card with British Airways, as another example. Individual banks that issue cards are also co-branding, as Barclaycard has done with its Uber Visa card (combining 3 brands in all).

Co-branding is most successful when both brands are well known, reputable and able to appeal to each other's customer base. The communication styles and marketing content of the brands involved must be compatible, as well. The synergy from combining brands will be strongest under these conditions.

Google has used co-branding to name its Android operating systems more than once. Last year, it co-branded with the famous biscuit brand Oreo to name the Android Oreo OS. In 2013, it co-branded with the popular chocolate bar KitKat for an Android OS name that also appeared on the candy bar wrappers. The co-branding worked because the combined names were quirky and attention-getting.

This post updates material on co-branding in Chapter 6 of my Essential Guide to Marketing Planning, 4e.