ABC Is 'Dancing' With AT&T, Macy's

Looking to move into the high financial-stakes world of reality show sponsorships, ABC has made two major deals with AT&T and Macy's for the latest edition of "Dancing with the Stars."

None of the parties disclosed terms in their announcement. Media executives estimate the AT&T deal is priced in the $10 million to $15 million range, somewhat lower for Macy's. Both include significant media plans on the network and online.

Major "American Idol" sponsorship deals on Fox cost an eye-opening $50 million a year each for its three major sponsors: Coca-Cola, AT&T and Ford Motor Co., according to a variety of reports.

As it has done with Fox's "American Idol," the highest-rated prime-time TV network show, AT&T will let viewers connect with the show through their mobile phones. In the AT&T deal with "Stars," viewers will be able to text-message and vote for their favorite dancing couple. AT&T customers will get exclusive, unaired video of "Stars."

Users can also share video through a new AT&T service--Video Share--which will be integrated into each episode. The AT&T deal is a full-fledged media deal with ABC, and will include on-air, online and mobile media.



Macy's, the nationwide department store chain, will sponsor five "Dancing with the Stars" results shows. Attached to each will be performances by well-known celebrities--the first is famous tap dancer Savion Glover. Macy's new fall advertising campaign features a host of celebrities--Martha Stewart, Emeril Lagasse, Donald Trump, and Tommy Hilfiger--among others.

Both deals were put together by AT&T and Macy's media agency Mediaedge: cia.

"Dancing with The Stars" will debut Sept. 24, with stars that include ex-Spice Girl Melanie Brown, Disney Channel's "Cheetah Girls" Sabrina Bryan, Indy race car champion Helio Castroneves, Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, actress Jennie Garth, boxing champion Floyd Mayweather, singer-actress Marie Osmond and actress Jane Seymour.

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