Shopping channel is looking for more media opportunities
QVC is going shopping for programming in Hollywood.The network has signed with Creative Artists Agency to increase its entertainment profile, with CAA Marketing set to seek out opportunities involving film, TV, digital media and music. The division, which also reps the Coca-Cola Co., General Motors and Mattel, will especially look to pair up QVC with content creators given that CAA Marketing sees the channel as a prime platform to launch new programming for its mostly female audience. QVC, which broadcasts live 24 hours a day, is available in more than 100 million homes in the U.S. and another 95 million overseas. Channel focuses on selling beauty, fashion, jewelry and home products. Company also has a strong online following. In fact, e-commerce sales in the U.S. surged 26% for QVC in 2011 to $2.16 billion, while total sales rose 5.9% to nearly $8.3 billion. In March, QVC parent Liberty Interactive Corp brokered deals to expand the channel’s reach in China to 195 million Chinese homes that have digital cable. It already reaches 35 million households there. QVC has lined up celebs including Jennifer Hudson, the Kardashians, Nicole Richie, Heidi Klum, 50 Cent, Jimmy Fallon and Rachel Zoe to launch their own product lines. CAA also will assist its clients in promoting their products, but those deals will be handled through the tenpercentery’s licensing arm. “There is no business model quite like QVC’s — it is a retailer, content producer, content distributor and a growing influence on popular culture,” said David Messinger, co-head of CAA Marketing. “This partnership will leverage QVC in new and exciting ways while helping to showcase the company’s innovation, commitment to quality and leadership in the e-retail and home shopping space.” QVC sees the relationship with CAA as a way to boost its viewership and, as a result, its sales but stressed that it was important for CAA to understand the company’s “unique culture.” “QVC’s success is built upon continuous innovation, exceptional customer focus and quality products that you can’t find anywhere else,” said Doug Rose, QVC’s senior VP of programming and marketing. “But our secret sauce is our people, and so we are careful to choose business partners who reflect our own values.” The channel’s entertainment moves come as rival HSN also is getting creative in how it works with Hollywood, having devoted 72 hours of airtime to promote Sony’s “Eat Pray Love” in 2010 and more recently Universal’s “Snow White and the Huntsman,” which included a 24-hour promotion of 200 products inspired by the film and costume designer Colleen Atwood. CAA Marketing also reps Chipotle, Southwest Airlines and Diageo. Division was instrumental in brokering Coke’s sponsorship of Fox’s “American Idol,” and the launch of “The Transformers” film franchise for Hasbro. It recently won kudos for its “Cultivate” campaign for Chipotle that featured Willie Nelson covering Coldplay, and set up Hot Wheels, Monster High and Masters of the Universe as TV and film properties for Mattel.