Sears taps agency for film, TV ops

Dept. store looks for career on screen with 'Malibu' role

You’re about to see a more entertaining side of Sears.

After a successful tie-in with ABC’s “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition,” department store giant Sears, Roebuck and Co. has tapped NMA Entertainment to help it build an even bigger relationship with Hollywood.

NMA will help identify and broker future entertainment opportunities with television or film properties where Sears could place its “Good Life. Great Price” slogan and stable of brands and around which it could develop marketing and promotional campaigns.

Financial terms of the deal with NMA were not disclosed.

“Extreme Makeover” has already helped give Sears and its brands an image makeover. Sears is the official sponsor of the show.

Sears will also prominently appear in Fox’s new home improvement reality TV show “The Complex Malibu,” which begins airing later this year.

Sears’ expanded interest in using entertainment to attract consumers comes as the company has recently undergone an exec shuffle among its top ranks. The Chicago-based company, which operates 2,300 stores in the United States and Canada, has been looking to become less reactive when developing new marketing initiatives and ink deals with potentially popular TV shows or film properties before they bow.

Other clients for NMA, previously known as Norm Marshall & Associates, include General Motors, Heineken, Baskin-Robbins, Dunkin’ Donuts, Samsung, Chanel, Crown Royal and Xbox.

Company brokered the appearance of General Motors’ cars in Warner Bros.’ “The Matrix Reloaded,” as well as a promotion between Baskin-Robbins and DreamWorks’ “Shrek,” and tie-ins between Heineken and New Line’s “Austin Powers” franchise.

Sears isn’t the only department store tapping into entertainment to boost sales.

Bloomingdales will appear in Revolution Studio’s comedy “13 Going on 30” bowing April 23, while Saks Fifth Avenue will have a starring role in Disney’s upcoming “Shopgirl,” a deal that the William Morris Agency brokered for the retailer.

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