Gadzooks Begins Girls-Only Marketing

DALLAS The Richards Group is launching the first stage of its rebranding push for Gadzooks today.

The Dallas agency has created in-store signage and other branded materials that have an “anti-equality” theme. The effort breaks as the teen retailer phases out its mens’ merchandise and begins selling clothing and accessories geared only to women ages 16-22.

Signs are going up in the client’s 429 stores about the liquidation of the mens’ items, but those were not enough to stress the store will be “the ultimate destination” for junior girls, shop principal John Beitter said. “We needed to tell them there’s something coming that they’re going to be excited about,” he said.

One sign reads, “Proud to be sexist. Gadzooks is going all-girl.” Another repeats the all-girl message and states, “Stop equality.” Both picture a different teenage girl with type in bold red.

Another in-store marketing effort will likely emerge before a much larger branding campaign breaks later this year to coincide with the back-to-school season, Beitter said.

Spending on the “teaser” efforts and the larger branding campaign is undisclosed. Gadzooks spent only $1 million on advertising last year, according to CMR, but client CEO Jerry Szczepanski has said expenditures on the rebranding effort will be “a marked increase in what we normally spend.”

Richards won the account of the Dallas-based retailer in January following a review.