Co-Branding for the Win

suitsThis morning I got in the car, turned on the radio, and immediately remembered that I want to warch Suits on Thursday. There wasn’t a Suits commercial on the radio. There was something better: “Love Me Again” by John Newman was playing.

This is  a song that I couldn’t have named 24 hours ago. But USA has managed to associate it in my mind with Suits, by making it the soundtrack to the Season 3 trailer.


Marketers have been intertwining products for decades. As early as the 1950s, characters in shows like The Burns and Allen show were suggesting that viewers drink Carnation Evaporated Milk. Rather than interrupt the show with commercials, Burns and Allen (and many other shows of the time) wove the advertisement into their show.

Times have changed, and advertising has evolved in two directions. We now have commercials interrupting our broadcasts. But we also see companies buying product placement. They’re sponsoring sports teams. And some use storylines for one product as a way to advertise another – co-branding.


Suits and John Newman both get exposure from the season 3 trailer. But they’re not the only ones sharing ad space. General Electric and Budweiser teamed up at the 2012 Superbowl, and Proctor and Gamble combined two of their own products in one commercial  – Old Spice and Charmin.

All of these co-branding experiences build brand awareness. Co-branding opens a whole new world for content marketing. Content marketers seek out ways to make their content and their brand relevant. Does the show make the song more relevant? It does for me.

Co-branding increase awareness for both products. It’s a valuable tool in the content marketer toolkit.

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