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GameStop selects The Marketing Arm as AOR

Video game retailer GameStop Corp. has named The Marketing Arm as its promotions agency of record. It will also be responsible for direct marketing.

The agency will work to develop fully integrated promotional events for GameStop, including in-store experiences and merchandising.

The relationship with The Marketing Arm reflects a “new commitment [on GameStop’s part] to talking to customers in a more integrated and focused man­ner,” said Kristin Djurdjulov, director of marketing at GameStop.

The Marketing Arm will also manage direct and partner marketing and wireless and interactive promotions, as well as develop content for GameStop TV, the retailer’s in-store TV network. Previously, these activities were handled either in-house by GameStop or with the assistance of agency Six Degrees.

By consolidating all of GameStop’s pro­motional and direct marketing activity with one agency, the multichannel video game merchant is hoping “to integrate and elevate its promotions and the brand,” Djurdjulov explained.

This is the latest step by GameStop to bolster its marketing efforts. In late 2007, it launched its first national advertising initiative with marketing agency of record The Richards Group.

This year, the retailer has built up its in-house marketing staff with the hiring of Djurdjulov in May. Earlier, in February, Mike Hogan joined the company as SVP of marketing.

GameStop operates 5,453 retail stores in 16 countries worldwide. The com­pany also operates two e-commerce sites, GameStop.com and EBgames.com, and publishes Game Informer magazine.

Instead of planning many smaller, local promotions throughout the year, GameStop will be emphasizing fewer pro­motions that are both bigger and national in scope behind some of the hotter titles. The goal will be to focus on hard-hitting promotions that will drive presales and release-date purchases, Djurdjulov said.

“The idea is to more closely align GameStop’s marketing with the publish­ers’ marketing so we can capitalize on their spend,” Djurdjulov said. She expects the first of these big promotions to appear in the fourth quarter.

GameStop will also be reevaluating its targeting strategy. “We will be taking a much more strategic look at who our customer is and who we want it to be in the coming months,” Djurdjulov said, pointing out that people of all ages and walks of life play video games.

Once the promotional activity has been mastered, GameStop will be looking more closely at other marketing areas. For example, Djurdjulov said, “There is potential for GameStop to do some more direct mail.”

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