Is it better to make nice with competitors (perhaps if it's financially beneficial)?  In some cases, it may be better to damper notions of competition and pickup on financially-sound sentiments regarding partnerships.

However, are such unions good for other brands in the industry?  The T-Mobile brand does not appreciate the planned purchase of spectrum from cable companies by competitor, Verizon.  Wait.  Didn't T-Mobile attempt to merge with AT&T recently?  That didn't go over well; so, T-Mobile wants to crash Verizon's merger party, filing a request with the federal government, urging them to pull the cord out of the wall on the incipient deal?

The expected Verizon deal involves Comcast, Time Warner, Bright House Networks, and Cox Communications.  T-Mobile is fourth in the cellphone vertical; but, that position is not offering enough security.  The brand thinks the Verizon deal would be unfair, placing "excessive concentration" (of wireless spectrum) at the whims of T-Mobile's competitor.

Purchasing spectrum enhances a wireless carriers' position to effectively market and advertise products and services.  The alignment of forces is not farfetched these days.  SimplyMeasured joined forces with Klout recently; the former is not charging users extra for the added statistics offered with the help of the latter.  Verizon reached a deal in December to snag the wireless spectrum for $3.6 billion.  Verizon made a separate deal, allowing it to market its services (and vice versa).  Such a partnership could be incredibly profitable for Verizon.  T-Mobile doesn't like those kinds of projections.

Some politicians don't like the dynamic of the relationship either, observing Comcast and Verizon were working side by side as not competitors.  Al Franken, Senator of Minnesota, mentions, "These joint-marketing agreements will turn these rival companies into partners, rather than competitors.  I fear this will ultimately mean less competition, less choice, and higher prices for consumers."

What does Verizon have to add to the conversation?  At present, Verizon is not 'accepting calls' regarding the union.  As more brands leverage digital channels of marketing, will such deals become common reruns?

February 22, 2012

Todd Bailey is Director of Search, Media and PR with Gen3 Marketing and US Brand Ambassador for Majestic SEO. Also, Founder/Editor of

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