The latest in lawyer advertising on TV brings together two giant companies in a joint advertising effort and they’re not even lawyers. I just saw, this Saturday morning on WNBC TV4 New York, a TV commercial co-branded for both FindLaw.com and NBC.com. FindLaw.com is owned by West Publishing Corporation which is owned by Thomson Corporation, which I believe is the largest publisher in North America. Of course, everyone knows who NBC is. The TV commercial, which is the first one of its kind that I have seen, advised that if you need a lawyer you can go to FindLaw.com which is available at NBC.com. The TV commercial displayed the graphics of both company logos with FindLaw.com above the NBC logo.
Cobranding or cross promotion is a relationship between two different companies to share advertising. Cobranding occurs with all types of media, from TV to web sites. While cobranding is not uncommon, I have not previously seen cobranding in lawyer advertising.
Cross promotion allows FindLaw.com to substantially reduce their advertising costs by cobranding with NBC.com. As the seller of media time, NBC TV provides media time to FindLaw.com at a discount for media time which may even be unsold time. Additionally, NBC.com receives additional traffic and cobranding. Obviously, this partnership between web sites and advertising works well for FindLaw.com and NBC. I previously considered an offer of cobranding with 1-800-HURT-911, but due to possible confusion I did not proceed. I would love to find a similar opportunity.