Nordstrom enlists comedians as its latest models

The retailer brings the fun back to fashion to promote this year's Anniversary Sale.


Nordstrom is looking on the bright side of fashion, bringing on a team of comedians in a campaign for this year’s Anniversary Sale.

The models for the campaign represent a wide swath of the comedy business in the U.S. and Canada: Daniel Levy, star of CBC’s Schitt’s Creek; Liza Koshy, YouTuber and TV host; Phoebe Robinson, writer and podcaster best known for 2 Dope Queens; and Hannah Simone, actress best known for New Girl.

1-ANNIV-0718-Phoebe-03-0234The comedians will be featured on the retailer’s social channels and in its Anniversary Sale catalogue, part of a broader campaign that includes digital, out-of-home, radio and print ads across Canada and the U.S., as well as in-store displays. The campaign also includes online videos driving customers to participate in the “Show Us How You #NSALE” contest, where shoppers can share photos and videos from their local Anniversary Sale on social for a chance to win a $500 gift card.

In Canada, one unique activation the retailer will be doing is a pop-up in locations across Toronto, specifically highlighting beauty products available during the Anniversary Sale and encouraging visitors to visit a store or buy them online.

The comedians were shot by photographer Mary Ellen Matthews, best known for her work shooting the hosts and musical guests of Saturday Night Live for portraits that appear as bumpers before and after commercial breaks.

The campaign was developed in-house, with agency Mindshare handling media in the Canadian market.

Nordstrom began its Anniversary Sale in the 1960s and it has since grown to become its biggest sales event of the year, with new arrivals receiving extensive markdowns for two weeks before going back to regular price. This year’s sale begins on July 20 and runs until Aug. 5.

1-ANNIV-0718-Hannah-Burst-01-0115Using high-profile influencers as models in campaigns to promote the Anniversary Sale isn’t new for Nordstrom. Last year, it partnered with six people who were renowned in their respective fields, resulting in a diverse group that included NFL quarterback Russell Wilson, model and designer Ashley Graham, actor Taye Diggs and dancer Keone Madrid. This year, zeroing in on comedy allowed the retailer to maintain last year’s focus on people who are passionate about what they do, while adding more of a humourous energy.

“Fashion is about having fun and we think we’ve captured that with this campaign,” said Scott Meden, EVP and CMO at Nordstrom.