Omnicom Group, parent of agencies BBDO Worldwide, DDB Worldwide and TBWA Worldwide, is to fund an hour-long prime-time special on NBC featuring country music trio the Dixie Chicks.

The deal gives Omnicom most of the ad spots during the show to sell-on to its clients. NBC, which will screen the show in November, will not pay a license fee.

Omnicom’s initiative reflects the increasingly warm relationship between marketing and entertainment, as agencies use sponsorship and product placement to cut down on clutter. Earlier this week, Johnson & Johnson agreed to sponsor the premiere of Disney’s new medical drama Gideon’s Crossing.

The Omnicom deal was brokered by Creative Artists Agency, whose managing partner Lee Gabler predicted: “Something similar to this will be the wave of the future. Advertising agencies have to find ways to get more bang for the buck”.

News source: Wall Street Journal