How not to handle co-branding

I swear I’ve ranted about this before, but I was presented with the following atrocity while buying some prints from my Flickr photos:


That’s four brands for the customer to (fail to) absorb:

  1. Snapfish (company doing the photo printing)
  2. Hewlett-Packard (apparently insecure company which owns Snapfish)
  3. Flickr (company who hosts the photos, partnering with Snapfish for printing)
  4. PayPal (company who handles payment)

Flickr_yahoo I suppose we’re lucky Flickr didn’t use the ghastly “Flickr from Yahoo” logo which would have brought the total to 5 brands. And eBay, bless their souls, does not as far as I know ever use “PayPal, an eBay company.” (Or even “eBay, a PayPal company” as would probably be more appropriate these days.)

If I were to try to fix the situation, I might leave PayPal as is (payments are important, and the branding is properly contextual), force HP to either fish or cut bait (leave HP out or rename Snapfish) and try to find a more elegant placement for Flickr, possibly text-only.

There’s not much of a larger point here, other than “Bad co-branding: don’t do it!”

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