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Macy's seeks celebrity power for new TV ads

Scenes featuring tycoon Donald Trump blow-drying his hair and domestic entrepreneur Martha Stewart constantly rearranging her products are part of a celebrity-studded advertising campaign that Macy's Inc. hopes will help build its image as a national brand.
/ Source: The Associated Press

Scenes featuring tycoon Donald Trump blow-drying his hair and domestic entrepreneur Martha Stewart constantly rearranging her products are part of a celebrity-studded advertising campaign that Macy's Inc. hopes will help build its image as a national brand.

The Cincinnati-based retailer, which reported a 77 percent drop in its second-quarter earnings this month, continues to struggle to create a strong national brand and integrate the stores gained in its $11 billion acquisition of former competitor May Department Stores Co. in 2005.

The television campaign beginning next month will feature celebrities, such as Trump and Stewart, who sell their own branded products at Macy's. They are seen in the ads primping their departments as if preparing for customers.

In addition to Trump and Stewart, other celebrities include singer and actress Jessica Simpson, designers Tommy Hilfiger and Kenneth Cole and music producer and rapper Sean "Diddy" Combs.

"This advertising campaign is really about showcasing all of these great celebrity name brands that fit under this one big roof," Martine Reardon, executive vice president of corporate marketing for Macy's, said Thursday.

Reardon said the commercials have a humorous, whimsical slant, focusing on each celebrity's personality and public image.

Martha Stewart's image as a perfectionist is captured in a scene where she can be seen folding and refolding her products, and Trump is seen in front of a mirror blow-drying his hair into his signature style.