All the latest and trendy clothing line the walls and fill the (virtual) pages of Zamage Clothing. Zac Sheaffer says that when he was just a kid, he knew he wanted to own a clothing store. Twelve-year-old Zac liked the idea of making money, but he also had a thing for clothing and fashion. He sold candy and mixtapes to classmates and friends, and worked jobs like McDonalds up til the age of fifteen.
But he knew that just working, simply being the employee, wasn’t in the books for him. Today, Zac is the owner and genius behind Zamage Clothing.
Nearly 400 thousand followers on Instagram, a 5,000 sq. foot store, and with fans like wrestler and musician Lio Rush, disc jockey and music producer DJ Envy, and radio presenter and television personality Charlamagne tha God wearing sporting Zamage merchandise. Over a sixteen-year period, Zac Sheaffer has managed to create a store from nothing but a dream to a fixture of Lancaster, PA and a dominating online presence for fashionable athletic and hip-hop inspired clothing.
A large part of this success has come from dedication and savvy marketing techniques. Zamage Clothing probably wouldn’t be where it is if Zac didn’t know how to market.
Some of those creative marketing techniques include the “golden” ticket (hiding a ticket inside shoes in the stockroom and if a customer finds the same size and style of shoe in the store, they get the shoes for free); giving out Zamage lanyards to thousands of people in high-traffic areas; and driving down prices on select items. Zac also knows his customer, and has placed ads on websites where it’s possible a potential customer of his could be perusing.
One of the more clever marketing strategies Zac came out with was with ThisIs50.com. Zac says he “Knew 50 Cent was releasing his album so, on his website my ad said “Free Album” which first had to be approved by G-Unit records. The click through rate was amazing. Every customer that ordered got a free album. As time went on, I built our online presence to the point we outgrew our location and I had to get a warehouse.” Outside of thinking creatively for marketing, Zamage helped to build it’s robust IG marketing by collaborating and connecting to bigger accounts for shoutouts from them.
Zac has also carried Zamage Clothing to where it is today also through his steadfast dedication and perseverance. When he was operating out of that tiny space in his first year of business, Zac tried reaching out to New Era Cap Co. to get a contract to carry their famous hat line. “At that time the guy told me he couldn’t, so I…called him once a month and finally he broke and said if you come down here next week and you have x-amount of money we can get you started.”
That’s what it took for Zac to get his contract, which allowed his store to start selling recognizable brands. It also propelled him and the business into the big leagues – four years after signing, Zamage moved into the 5,000 square foot space. Part of Zac’s business philosophy is there’s no point to it if you aren’t going to try to be the best. This has meant that Zamage seeks to provide the best quality and style of clothing to its customers – not something cheap or easy to make.
He’s also stayed dedicated to both his employees and to his customers and the community at large – which has contributed to Zamage growing and becoming a fixture of the community. During the 2008 recession, Zac knew that his employees were counting on the store and on him to pull it through. Thinking of them was a big driver. Zamage has even given out 1,500 gaiter-style facemasks within the community, demonstrating that Zamage is dedicated to its community (while also taking another creative marketing opportunity).