Visa Card, Discovery In Cross-Promotion

May 26, 2003  •  Post A Comment

Discovery Networks and Visa USA have signed their first cross-platform advertising deal together.
The multimillion-dollar deal, structured around the cult hit What Not to Wear, which airs on TLC and BBC America, will include advertising on six Discovery networks and is yet another sign that this year’s upfront broke at the top-tier cable networks almost simultaneously with the big broadcast networks.
The networks participating are Discovery Channel, Animal Planet, the Travel Channel, Discovery Home & Leisure Channel, TLC and BBC America. The Visa-Discovery partnership runs from fourth quarter 2003 through third quarter 2004. The deal was negotiated by OMD, Visa’s media agency of record.
What Not To Wear is part of the hot “makeover” reality genre. In it, a fashion-challenged subject is secretly filmed for each episode, then evaluated by the show’s style experts, who eventually transform the subject into an exemplar of stylishness.
Beginning in third quarter, the fashion victims will be able to revamp their wardrobes with an official Visa credit card and a $5,000 credit line. Additional elements of the partnership include logo recognition via an in-program feature, and co-branded tune-ins and billboards across all six participating Discovery Networks. “In a year when there’s an Olympics and Visa’s the Olympics sponsor, this is huge for us, because the Olympics drain a lot of money from Visa,” said Joe Abruzzese, president, advertising sales, Discovery Networks U.S.