Marketing Gender Equality Creative

Brands and agencies call attention to the pay gap on Equal Pay Day


By Kyle O'Brien | Creative Works Editor

April 2, 2019 | 7 min read

To most rational people, equal work should result in equal pay. Unfortunately, around the world that is not the case, and several agencies and brands are taking unique approaches to call for equal pay for men and women doing the same job.


'Womansplained' addresses the pay equity gap.

Equal Pay Day in the US is today (2 April). The date symbolizes how far into the year women must work to earn what men earned in the previous year. The day was started by the National Committee on Pay Equity (NCPE) in 1996 as a public awareness event to illustrate the pay gap, and clearly there is still much to yet be accomplished as #EqualPayDay is still not equal.


Women leadership-centric agency Phenomenon has put out a cheeky video in celebration of Equal Pay Day. It comes on the heels of the House of Representatives just passing the Paycheck Fairness Act.

The agency’s video, ‘Equality in Advertising: Womansplained’, tackles the issue by turning the tables on ‘mansplaining.’ It features women in the company answering questions such as, “Won’t equal pay be difficult to implement?” which is answered by chief talent and culture officer Amy Panzarasa with the obvious, “We have two employees, they have the same level of experience, and perform the same responsibilities, so they get the exact same pay,” and “Why are you so bossy?” answered with, “I am your boss.”

It ends by stating, “Not all agencies are equal. Let’s change that.”

‘Demand More’

Snack company Nut-rition, a brand that believes women should ‘Demand More’ from their snacks and more from their lives, is teaming up with award-winning actor Laura Dern and charitable organization Equal Rights Advocates to raise awareness of the gender pay gap.

Nut-rition partnered with Dern as an executive producer of a hidden-camera video to shine a light on what it feels like to get less. In the video, unsuspecting store customers are sold gender-specific bags of Nut-rition – with male customers offered bags that have 20% less product than packs offered to their female counterparts.

In addition, Nut-rition is also debuting the 'Equal Pay Pack,' a 20% bigger pack of the nut mix that benefits Equal Rights Advocates and will be available in June at The partnership will help fund a legal helpline available to anyone who feels they’re experiencing an issue with pay inequality.

‘Equal Pay CA’

California Pay Equity

California ‘First Partner’ Jennifer Siebel Newsom, California labor secretary Julie A. Su, The California Commission on the Status of Women and Girls (CCSWG), and Time’s Up announced #EqualPayCA, a campaign to help close the pay gap in California.

Together, they are promoting new resources from the Commission’s Pay Equity Task Force to educate employees, employers, and labor unions on how to close the pay gap, and launching an awareness campaign to educate the public on the causes of the pay gap and how to close it. #EqualPayCA was launched in coordination with Time’s Up Pay Up, an awareness campaign from Time’s Up aimed at closing the pay gap nationwide.

The Office of the First Partner and CCSWG are also announcing 13 inaugural corporate commitments to their CA Equal Pay Pledge. These businesses have committed to conduct an annual company-wide gender pay analysis, review hiring and promotion processes and procedures to reduce unconscious bias and structural barriers, and promote best practices that will close the pay gap to ensure fundamental equity for all workers. The companies include Airbnb, Apple, AT&T Communications, Autodesk, Branch Metrics, Gusto, Ike Robotics, Medallia, Salesforce, Shutterfly, SunRun, Square and Zynga.

“California has the strongest equal pay laws in the nation, but there is still more work to do,” said Newsom. “That’s why I applaud these California companies for their commitment to pay equity, and why I am excited to partner with the California Commission on the Status of Women and Girls and Time's Up to continue to work toward closing the pay gap. Together, we can uplift California women to ensure a more equitable for all.”


Women should not have to pay extra for gender specific goods — such as razors, dry cleaning, and hygiene products — where many studies have shown that they pay more for those items than men do.

It’s called the ‘Pink Tax’ and the European Wax Center is taking a stand by launching the next phase of its #AxThePinkTax campaign to raise awareness of this gender price discrimination.

Created by Laundry Service, year two of this multichannel campaign encourages women everywhere to take active steps to claim their worth. From driving awareness to providing women with the information and tools they need to take action, European Wax Center hopes to ignite a movement to make the Pink Tax impossible to miss.


Martin Agency equal pay

Upon entering executive leadership positions at The Martin Agency, chief executive officer Kristen Cavallo and chief creative officer Karen Costello made equal pay one of their first priorities. They conducted an third party agency-wide pay analysis and closed the pay gap for everyone, a feat that was celebrated on Equal Pay Day in 2018.

One year later, for Equal Pay Day 2019, Martin is showing support for the US Women’s Soccer team – whose players famously earn 62% less than their male counterparts. “We made an impactful change people would notice — subtracting 62% from their jersey numbers,” said Jerry Hoak, executive creative director, managing director for The Martin Agency.

The players are famously out front fighting this fight, but there are tons of women who can’t afford this fight, so for every social share with #equalpayall or tagged friend, Martin will donate $1 to The National Women’s Law Center, up to $10,000.

“I’m really passionate about creating equitable and respectful work environments and pay equality is a huge part of that for me. I am so proud that we did that at the agency and want to continue supporting others in their fight for that same right," said Costello.

'Know Your Worth, Show Your Worth'

Squarespace recently launched a partnership with customer Ladies Get Paid. The initiative takes a step past the Ladies Get Paid mission of 'Knowing Your Worth,' by encouraging women to 'Show Your Worth,' with a free online workshop and toolkit.

Squarespace is invested in providing women with the customizable platform, knowledge, and resources to build their ideal future. This partnership helps women build the confidence to become self-advocates, understand what it is they should be advocating, and how to do so in a compelling way.

Marketing Gender Equality Creative

More from Marketing

View all


Industry insights

View all
Add your own content +