Congratulations to all 2019 finalists & winner below. This category recognizes the influencer marketing programs where creators represent a brand.
AIR MILES Multi-Tier Brand Ambassador Strategy (WINNER)
CLIENT: AIR MILES REWARD PROGRAM
AGENCY: NORTH STRATEGIC
ABOUT THE ENTRY
In 2019, the AIR MILES Reward Program implemented a multi-tier influencer strategy that integrated influencers into the fabric of the brand marketing calendar at the celebrity, micro and nano levels. With national, bilingual representation reflecting the lives of AIR MILES Collectors, their content was amplified through earned, owned and paid channels. From Olympic champion Tessa Virtue, to everyday Collectors, content established the Collector voice while simultaneously allowing the brand to reach new audiences. Collaborating with these influencers, AIR MILES spotlighted the lives of its Collectors and extended its brand promise of bringing Canadians closer to moments of reward, every day.
As Canada’s most recognized loyalty program, with nearly 11-million active Collectors representing nearly 2/3 of all Canadian households, AIR MILES has extremely high brand awareness across the country. That said, as a complex Program with a network of partners it is imperative that AIR MILES intersects its Collectors daily lives with content that shines a light on the Program benefits, instills third-party credibility, and reinforces the value of the brand. Helping generate conversation that elevated the Program benefits beyond AIR MILES’ brand content, the 2019 always-on influencer program converted on brand recognition by employing strategic content placements supported by a robust paid media strategy to keep the brand promise of #MilesBringYouCloser top of mind.
From seeing Tessa Virtue appear as talent in AIR MILES advertising, to following along with Montreal celebrities Etienne Boulay and Maika Desnoyers as they used AIR MILES to help prepare for the welcoming of their new baby, Collectors across Canada were reached with a relatable, authentic message that put a human lens on the brand. Beyond ‘traditional’ social influencers, AIR MILES extended the Program to engage 20+ everyday Collectors from across Canada to form a roster of Collector Ambassadors responsible for creating monthly social content that promotes the brand in context of their individual experience with it.
By employing a earned, owned and paid approach to an always-on influencer program, AIR MILES tapped into new audiences, welcomed new Collectors into the Program, educated current Collectors on how to get the most value out of the Program, and reminded Canadians why AIR MILES is Canada’s favourite loyalty program. All this, while moving its target audience beyond just awareness, inspiring action across various lines of business within the AIR MILES Reward Program.
Additionally, by scraping for creative performance data tied to exchange-level audience data for future AI extrapolation and analysis, the 2019 influencer strategy has been extended beyond brand channels to reach the customers of AIR MILES partners such as LCBO, Sobeys, Metro and BMO.
Now You Can
CLIENT: MOLSON COORS – HEINEKEN
AGENCY: CITIZEN RELATIONS, SDI
ABOUT THE ENTRY
Citizen Relations set out to show millennial Canadians that “Now You Can” still have a social life when you’re not drinking. We carefully selected a group of influencers who fit the brand target profile and had an interest in Heineken and wanted to work with the brand to create ambassadors who could showcase a lifestyle vs one-off posts. We worked with influencers across the following categories in Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver to speak to the “Now You Can” philosophy from a variety of perspectives, including:
Each ambassador developed an ongoing series of content that showcased how 0.0 fit into their life, as a premium alcohol-free alternative suitable for many different occasions. The ambassadors also engaged their network offline by hosting bi-weekly workout sessions.
They were able to build ambassadors for a brand that had done very few influencer activations in Canada prior to this campaign. In addition, they successfully showcased the different social occasions when Canadians could enjoy a Heineken 0.0 and established strong partnerships with top fitness studios including F45 in Toronto and Victoria Park in Montreal, as well as well-known barbershops, Faderoom (Toronto) and Maison Privee (Montreal). Through our ambassadors, they were able to bring other influencers and notable people into experience and trial Heineken 0.0 issuing over 5,712 samples and 324 vouchers for a 6-pack of Heineken 0.0. They also extended the program hosting a Mother’s Day and Father’s Day fitness class with our ambassadors and their networks.
Coors Light: The Mountains Are Calling
CLIENT: MOLSON COORS – COORS LIGHT
AGENCY: CITIZEN RELATIONS
ABOUT THE ENTRY
Coors Light inspires you to make the most of life. To showcase this, Citizen Relations built a program aimed to develop brand ambassadors Canada-wide to showcase experiences and moments, no matter the size, you can enjoy with a group of friends and a refreshing Coors Light. Ambassador partners created a steady stream of coverage showcasing how Coors Light is always a part of their social experiences. From Thursday night softball and a Raptors game to hitting up a music festival, the content inspired followers to grab a cold beer and seize the day with their crew.
The influencer program was more than simple content creation. Through relationship building and a unique experience offering, they were able to build dedicated and loyal brand ambassadors. From going above and beyond in content to converting their friends to become Coors Light fans, their influencers’ authentically integrated the brand not only into their content but into their social lives.
The brand ambassadors helped truly create a brand for Coors Light. By showcasing that the beer can help you experience moments with your friends to the fullest, what used to be viewed as a refreshing brew is now starting to appeal to consumers emotionally in addition to functionally.
Pride Toronto 2019
CLIENT: PRIDE TORONTO
AGENCY: THE INFLUENCE AGENCY
ABOUT THE ENTRY
Macro and Micro Influencers in the Canadian LGBTQ2+ Community were selected to promote Toronto Pride throughout 2019 (from January to Pride Month in June). This was the first time that Pride Toronto ever engaged in an Influencer Marketing campaign.
Part 1: Photoshoot with Influencers
In February, Pride Toronto and The Influence Agency held a photoshoot with the participating influencers. The photoshoot themed around all of the colours of the Pride flag and what they represent in the LGBTQ2+ Community.
Part 2: Pre-Event
In the months leading up to Pride Toronto, the Influencers created hype around the event and drove excitement through social posts and stories.
Each month of social posting focused on a colour of the Pride flag and what it represented to the Influencer and their community. The influencers shared their experiences with their audience from ‘coming out’ to what Pride Toronto means to them.
Part 3: Event Coverage
Influencers attended Toronto Pride and documented their experience through Instagram Stories and Instagram Posts.
The Influencer campaign had a tremendous impact on attendance at Pride in 2019.
An estimated 1.195 million people attended Pride weekend and more than 536,000 attended Pride month events. While the majority of attendees were from the GTA and Ontario, many visitors from other parts of Canada, the US and internationally also attended Pride events.
Additional Notes: The Pride Festival (including Pride weekend) contributed an estimated $374 million to Ontario’s GDP, supported 3,392 direct jobs and generated nearly $150 million in combined Federal, Provincial and Municipal tax revenues.
Travelzoo x Mijune Pak
AGENCY: CRAFT PUBLIC RELATIONS & LINDA & LINDA
ABOUT THE ENTRY
This year, Travelzoo wanted to celebrate ‘foodie travel’ with a bang! And who better to do it with than Canada’s favourite foodie – Top Chef Canada judge Mijune Pak. Travelzoo is an online publisher that provides our 1.5 million Canadian members with insider travel offers that are personally curated by one of our deal experts – all with the mission to inspire our members to #travelunexpected. Keeping this philosophy in mind, we set out to inspire our members to “dine outside their comfort zone” in 2019, and partnered with Mijune Pak, who took on the role of Travelzoo’s Global Food Correspondent.
From Day 1, they wanted to do more than your typical paid influencer placement. This was a full-year collaboration that included social content around foodie travel, contesting, engaging videos, and a brand-new nationwide restaurant festival, as well as member-exclusive travel experiences to enable our audience to become global food explorers. Mijune was very much the backbone of the entire year-long ‘foodie travel’ content program – they had countless planning calls with Mijune, and she was at the table for every critical stage as we shaped this program together.
They are proud of the final resulting program, which is a collaboration in the truest sense – all of the content and resulting quarterly initiatives throughout the year felt just as much “Mijune” as it does “Travelzoo”. Mijune truly committed to her role as Travelzoo’s Global Food Correspondent by being highly involved in not just the planning, but ultimately the execution of the different campaign legs, from being our spokesperson on Global News Morning in Winnipeg, to encouraging contest signups to her Instagram followers, to even helping write part of the script for our video series!
They kicked off the full-year partnership in January with their first content push to inspire members to become global food explorers by having Mijune Pak share her tips on how to how to eat authentically. She shared that eating authentically is a way of gaining a new appreciation for cultures beyond our own. In partnership with Mijune, Travelzoo’s team of deal experts curated a collection of unique authentic culinary experiences. The experiences included handpicked food tours, winery and craft brewery tours, wine tastings, cooking classes, festivals and more gourmet experiences from Niagara to Vancouver.
The next element of our partnership took place in April with the launch of Travelzoo Restaurant Month. Mijune Pak played a very active role in Travelzoo Restaurant Month as she personally vetted the 50+ participating restaurants to give her stamp of “Mijune’s Pick” approval. Throughout the month of April, over 2,500+ Travelzoo members dined outside of their comfort zone and broke out of their restaurant rut.
Most recently, Travelzoo sent Mijune Pak to explore unexpected eats in culinary destinations around the world. In August, we sent Mijune to San Francisco on a culinary adventure that was unlike anything she had ever experienced before. This foodie trip was different — Travelzoo’s team of deal experts did months of research to surprise Mijune with an unexpected breakfast, lunch and dinner over 24 hours. This culinary adventure was captured with video and blog content that was shared on social.
Overall, this campaign is unique as their content creator worked so closely with the brand to develop original ideas that feel authentic to both parties involved in the partnership. This working relationship proved to be successful for both Travelzoo and Mijune Pak, even so, that Mijune Pak is coming back in 2020 to re-launch the second annual Travelzoo Restaurant Month.
See More. Do More. Essilor
AGENCY: CUE DIGITAL MEDIA, JUNGLE MEDIA
ABOUT THE ENTRY
Using 4 influencers from various markets (English West & East Coast & Quebec), Cue Digital Media’s campaign created various pieces of content across 3 different briefs educating on 6 different products. This campaign involved stories, YouTube videos, IGTV videos, pre-roll videos for YouTube, and amplification across Instagram, Facebook, Bustle, and US weekly.
This campaign took on the challenge of one that many organizations face, how to make educational content engaging and aesthetically pleasing, using brand ambassadors across 3 different campaign flights since June. The approach took the influencers to meet with Doctors and document the entire experience and educating their followers along the way.
Cue used data to find relevant influencers who they knew reached their target markets and who spend a considerable amount of time looking at screens, I mean, who is more likely to speak to blue light damage than influencers!
This campaign involved multiple touchpoints and boosting with the post to reach people who were not organically targeted ensuring nationwide coverage, with both French and English content!
They highlighted multiple products, from sunglasses to regular glasses and had multiple briefs to make sure to show a variety of products, this was far from a one post wonder!
They took influencer content and re purposed it in several different ways, cutting down on cost and creative expenses. They used the influencer content in YouTube Pre Roll using machine learning to gain over 3 million impressions and a CTR of 31%.