Goal is to redefine strategy and deliver the power of integrated thinking
Toronto, May 16, 2016: Cossette has expanded its strategic capabilities in Toronto as part of a broader move to redefine how brands connect with consumers.
“We’ve added new talent in CRM, brand and digital and integrated them into one group with a plan to create an industry-leading, next generation of strategic service for our clients,” says Cossette Chief Strategy Officer Jason Chaney. “Increasingly we are seeing strategy become as much a part of the product as creative. By working together as an integrated strategy and creative team, we are able to create better informed brand creative and better brand experiences as we continue to move closer to a truly one-to- one world.”
The hires include Sarah Thompson, new Vice President Strategy, who joins Cossette from Corus Entertainment where she was Manager of Social Media. Thompson has a diverse media and agency background, having worked in digital and social media across a variety of industry categories.
Also new to the strategy team is Lisa Hart, who joins Cossette as Director of Strategy. Hart was most recently with Trevor/Peter Communications and before that Leo Burnett and Tribal DDB. Hart has worked on brand strategy for a broad range of high profile brands, including award-winning work for such clients as IKEA, Yellow Pages and McDonald’s Restaurants.
Other recent strategy hires include Senior Strategist, Olie Navrotska and Strategy Director Fernando Aloise. Navrotska was a freelance CRM consultant prior to joining Cossette and before that was with FCB working on OLG and Purolator. Aloise joins Cossette from DentsuBos where he worked on brand strategy for such clients as Toyota, Sleeman, Sapporo, CAMH and Constellation Brands (Wine Rack stores, Naked Grape, Sawmill Creek, Bodacious wines).
“Our investment in strategy reflects a wider trend that’s being driven by client demands and a need for new approaches to problem-solving,” says Chaney. “We need people who straddle all the areas of digital, social, data, CRM, strategy and creative and we need to find ways of cross-pollinating their thinking and their expertise.”
With just 100 days to go until the next Olympic Games, The Canadian Olympic Committee (COC) launched its Rio 2016 brand campaign Ice In Our Veins – the largest campaign in Team Canada’s history.
The campaign builds off the success of the COC’s Sochi 2014 #WeAreWinter campaign. This campaign highlights how Canada’s icy landscape helps create fierce athletes with iron will and determination – regardless of whether they compete at a winter or summer Games.
Developed by ad agency Cossette, the campaign includes a cinematic 60-second spot, a 30-second spot, out of home, digital, and seven specially created 10-second spots to be used on digital channels.
For the first time ever, the campaign was shot at a central location, bringing 12 athletes together over a two day period on a remote beach on Georgian Bay, with more than 40 hours of video footage shot and edited. The 12 Rio 2016 Olympic hopefuls include:
Ice In Our Veins, a three month campaign, was unveiled first on Team Canada’s digital channels and via the social media platforms of Canada’s athletes to give fans the very first look. On July 1 - Canada Day - it will launch more widely to all Canadians via TV/video, print, out of home, digital and social with further details around some exciting new partnerships coming soon.
Advertising Agency: Cossette, Canada
Director: Mark Zibert
Production House: Skin and Bones
Editing House: Saints Editorial
Media Agency: OMD
Communications Agency of Record: North Strategic
“Our Olympians taking on the world for Rio 2016 aren’t just summer athletes, they are Canadian athletes. Winter is in our blood and is part of our DNA. This campaign taps into our summer athletes’ swagger, who have the attitude of taking on all comers. It’s a stunningly shot, cinematic celebration of the heart, grit, fire of our Canadian athletes competing in Rio. It recognizes winter made us who we are and defines us as a country no matter the season our athletes compete in.”
Derek Kent, Chief Marketing Officer, Canadian Olympic Committee
When it comes to sports, people like the back story as much as the event itself. In Canada, the story that gets written by others from around the world is that we are a winter country and that holds true. Winter makes us tough- it makes us even stronger ... in all sports."
Peter Ignazi, Chief Creative Officer, Cossette
“It is an incredible honour to be a part of the Ice In Our Veins campaign for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. We are a winter nation, and that shapes and influences everything we do, including our training and preparation for the summer Games. It makes us tough, and that Canadian grit is what I will bring to Rio.”
Jennifer Abel, two-time Olympian, London 2012 bronze medallist
Search Begins For Innovative Businesses To Act As “Host” Companies
Toronto, April 19, 2016: NewCo, a revolutionary concept that creates a platform to learn, connect, and celebrate the world's most intriguing businesses and organizations, is holding its first Canadian NewCo Festival this Fall in Toronto.
NewCo represents a radical departure from the traditional conference format. Rather than learning in a conventional, theatre-style setting, festival attendees visit companies of their choice throughout an urban setting. Attendees learn about the companies first-hand from leaders and CEOs, right inside the offices where they work.
The brainchild of Wired magazine co-founder and media and tech entrepreneur John Battelle, NewCo launched in 2012 in San Francisco and is now operating in over 15 diverse cities around the world including Istanbul, San Francisco, Amsterdam, Mexico City and Barcelona. The events have attracted over 25,000 curious and influential festival-goers and well over 1,000 companies have participated across North America, Europe, and Latin America.
“With its reputation for innovation and forward-thinking, Canada became the logical choice for our next NewCo Festival, particularly in Toronto where there is such a diverse cultural mosaic and a flourishing business start-up community,” says Battelle.
The one-day Toronto NewCo Festival is scheduled for September 15.
The September event is being produced by Canadian ad agency Cossette, NewCo’s Affiliate Partner and Producer in Canada. Cossette is a national marketing communications agency and among the largest in Canada. The City of Toronto has also joined the initiative as an official Festival Partner Sponsor.
“We felt instantly drawn to the innovative format of the festival, which combines the learning of a business conference, the atmosphere of a music festival and the informality of a company open house,” says Brett Marchand, President and CEO of Cossette and its parent company Vision7 International.
“We also very much believe in the philosophy behind the NewCo concept, as envisioned by its founder John Battelle – which is to provide a platform for innovative and entrepreneurial companies that are on a mission to bring about positive change in their communities.
“We are thrilled to be able to provide such companies in Toronto with the opportunity to tell their stories and also to connect them with others who will benefit by learning from their experience – and maybe even helping to propel them further,” adds Marchand.
NewCos are seen as organizations that are redefining the world for the better. They can be involved in any aspect of society from industry, to culture, the arts, technology or the scientific community.
The NewCo Toronto Festival has already signed up five host companies that are all examples of organizations that are pushing the boundaries and helping to redefine their industries and the way we do business. They include: Google Canada, G Adventures, Wattpad, Soulpepper and Wealthsimple.
“As a company that constantly looks to push the boundaries of what is possible, it is an honour to be a HostCo because it enables us to engage individuals most excited about our business in a conversation within our office environment,” says Sam Sebastian, Managing Director, Google Canada. “We have been a NewCo host in six cities across the globe and are truly excited to make it seven by working with organizers to bring this amazing global event to Toronto.”
Toronto NewCo is actively recruiting more HostCo participants. The festival is looking for companies or organizations that are driven by innovation and who are on a mission to change the world.
Applicants will be reviewed by a diverse panel of cultural and business leaders, including: John Battelle, CEO, Co-Founder & Editor in Chief, Chairman, NewCo; Brett Marchand, President and CEO of Cossette and Vision7 International; John Ruffolo, CEO, Omers Ventures; Albert Schultz, Founding Artistic Director, Soulpepper; Sam Sebastian, Managing Director, Google Canada; Bruce Poon Tip, Founder G Adventures; and Angela Strange, Co-Chair C100.
Any organization wanting to join the festival as a hosting company can apply by clicking on this link http://tor.newco.co/apply-to-be-a-newco/. Successful candidates will be notified by June 23, 2016.
NewCo Toronto festival tickets will go on sale beginning July 21.
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As the winner of seven awards—three gold, one silver, one bronze, and two Orders of Excellence—Cossette set a new record and became Canada’s most highly acclaimed agency at this year’s GLOBES. Organized by the Marketing Agencies Association Worldwide (MAAW), the GLOBES recognize the best brand activation campaigns from across the world. Cossette is ranked fourth.
Two of Cossette’s campaigns combined to win the seven awards. First, the Amazing Contest, created for Mentos as part of its partnership with The Amazing Race Canada, was honoured four times—it took gold for both “Consumer Products ‒ Food” and “Short Term ‒ Trial and Awareness,” bronze for “Sponsorship,” and an Order of Excellence in the “Fully Integrated” category.
Cossette also received three awards for the December 10 campaignit mountedon behalf of Amnesty International to mark Human Rights Day—gold for “Cause Marketing,” silver for “Small Budget Campaign,” and an Order of Excellence in the “Not For Profit, Charity and Public Sector” category.
“This outstanding performance proves that our product is world-class,” said Antoine Bécotte, Chief Creative Officer at Cossette. “Knowing that agencies from all over the world submitted their campaigns, being ranked amongst the best means that we’ve created memorable campaigns and that our people are some of the industry’s top talent. It also speaks to the extraordinarily strong relationships we have with our clients, without whom none of this would have been possible.”
The Globes is an annual contest that features a panel of more than 100 judges from some 15 different countries, including Australia, Brazil, Canada, Ireland, the U.S. and the U.K.
Cossette co-founder and chairman Claude Lessard will be inducted into the Association of Creative Communications Agencies (A2C) Hall of Fame for his outstanding contribution as one of the industry’s great builders in Quebec. At last night’s Créa Awards gala, the A2C announced that it was creating the Hall of Fame to recognize the great visionaries who have helped make marketing communications the booming excellence-driven industry it is today. These remarkable individuals will be inducted under the title of Builder, Beacon or Ally.
Chosen by the A2C’s Board of Directors, “builders” must be senior managers who have distinguished themselves through the impact of their work. This year, the Prix Hommage was awarded to Mr. Lessard for his pioneering spirit, leadership and invaluable contribution to the exceptional growth of Cossette, a trailblazer in the world of communications agencies.
“I am truly honoured to receive this award from the Association of Creative Communications Agencies. To me, it represents more than 45 years of commitment and collaboration with the talented people I have had the good fortune of meeting over the course of my career,” said Mr. Lessard. “Above all, I am delighted that the agency I started as a young entrepreneur has become everything I dreamed it could be. Over the years, Cossette has shaped the industry’s top talent, developed campaigns that were both memorable and impactful, and set more than its share of trends. Today, I am proud to say that its sights are firmly set on the future, which is looking brighter than ever,” he added.
“Claude Lessard has always embodied a revolutionary management philosophy based on an integrated communications approach. By maintaining a perfect balance between management and art, he left lots of room for creativity, which gave rise to spectacular campaigns that have left their mark on all of us,” noted Mélanie Dunn, President and CEO of Cossette in Canada. “He is without question a key figure in the history of Quebec’s marketing communications industry,” she said.
“I don’t think that Cossette would exist today if it weren’t for Claude Lessard. His human, offbeat approach, innovative vision and business acumen are the foundation of the nation’s leading marketing communications agency,” added Louis Duchesne, Executive Vice-President and General Manager of Cossette in Quebec, and board member of A2C.
From humble beginnings come great things
When he was just 21, Lessard joined Cossette, then a small design studio in Quebec City. In order to get his foot in the door in the world of advertising, he offered to work for free. One year later, he and six colleagues got together and bought the company. And the results speak for themselves—the eight-person team grew to a workforce of 1,200 people in 12 countries, whose portfolio of clients is among the most prestigious in Canada, including McDonald’s Restaurants, Aeroplan, GM and General Mills.
Lessard is a man of conviction with strong ties to his roots—it’s no coincidence that the headquarters have remained in Quebec City, the company’s hometown, if you will, even though Cossette and its affiliates have offices in Montreal, Halifax, Toronto, Vancouver, Chicago, New York and Los Angeles.
Married for over 45 years, father of three and grandfather six times over, Claude Lessard has always kept a low profile, preferring good hard work to adulation. The numerous accolades he’s received from industry leaders and specialists demonstrate the high esteem in which he’s held both at home and abroad. In October 2001, he received the Quebec Entrepreneur of the Year in the Media and Entertainment category, and the National Entrepreneur of the Year for Service Excellence from Ernst & Young. In 2002, Université Laval bestowed an honorary doctoral degree on Lessard. In January 2006, he was inducted into Toronto’s Canadian Marketing Hall of Legends and in June 2011, he was given the title of Grand Québécois 2012—Economic Sector.
The ceremony to honour inductees and celebrate their achievements will be held in May 2016.
New arrival rounds out Cossette’s National Executive Team
Cossette has put the final key person in place in its top-level national executive team with the hiring of Daniel Shearer as the agency’s new Executive Vice-President and General Manager.
“We are thrilled to announce that Daniel has joined our national executive team,” says Cossette CEO Melanie Dunn. “We went through an exhaustive search process and we are excited about the incredible energy, potential and track record that Daniel brings to our team and to our agency. He represents a new generation of agency leadership and is someone who is very passionate about the communications product and is a champion of innovation. Daniel is a progressive thinker and the perfect fit for Cossette and our clients.”
Shearer joins Cossette from Taxi 2 in Toronto where he was General Manager. He was with Taxi for 11 years and has been involved in work highly awarded by both creative and effectiveness shows across a broad spectrum of clients including TELUS, Koodo, Cadbury, Yellow Pages, Boston Pizza, and Leon’s. Shearer has also played a pivotal role on the agency’s Kraft account, acting as Managing Director on Taxi’s North American Kraft business.
“This is a once-in-a-career opportunity – an iconic Canadian agency with enviable talent and undeniable momentum, a killer, hungry, national leadership team and client partnerships any agency would die for. I’m honoured to be joining the Cossette team and I can’t wait to get going,” says Shearer.
With the arrival of Shearer, Cossette will be now organized into two regions: Cossette Ontario and West, headed by Shearer; and Cossette Quebec and East, headed by EVP and General Manager Louis Duchesne. Shearer will be running the Toronto office and will have reporting responsibility for the West.
“Daniel was the final piece in a series of changes over the past year that saw new agency leadership in Quebec, great creative hires in Toronto, promotions in strategic planning and new leadership in the Maritimes,” adds Dunn. “With this new all-star management team in place, Cossette is poised to begin an exciting new chapter of growth and innovation.”
Cossette’s new senior executive team now includes:
CEO Melanie Dunn; EVPs Shearer and Louis Duchesne in Toronto and Montreal; SVP and GM Nadine Cole in Vancouver; CCOs Peter Ignazi and Carlos Moreno and CSO Jason Chaney in Toronto; CCO Antoine Becotte, CSO Florence Girod and Mobile & Tech Lead Malik Yacoubi in Montreal; SVP Simon Poitras in Quebec City and Maritime leader Samaan AbuDayyeh in Halifax.
On the picture, from left to right:
Nadine Cole, Louis Duchesne, Mélanie Dunn, Daniel Shearer, Simon Poitras and Samaan AbuDayyeh.
Engagement will never be evaluated in the same way again thanks to Ovation, a new model that measures and decodes engagement and identifies the solutions that increase its strength. Born of a collaboration between Léger and Cossette, Ovation goes much further than simply gauging consumers’ emotional attachment to a brand. This new model measures the intensity, frequency, nature and impact of interactions between brands and their audience, plus a brand’s ability to motivate customers, increase awareness and exert influence.
The Ovation model stems from the analysis of 205 brands representing 12 industries and over 35 subsectors, based on responses from over 5,000 people across the country. Results show that there’s a direct correlation between a brand sparking and supporting engagement and the benefits it reaps—greater loyalty, more recommendations, increased momentum, and more effective marketing.
“In the past, we measured customer satisfaction, today we analyze customer experience, and tomorrow we’ll be primarily concerned with customer engagement. We don’t just want a consumer to buy a certain brand—we want them to embrace it. The new Ovation approach, jointly developed by Léger and Cossette, offers our clients a more in-depth analysis of customer engagement with their brands,” said Jean-Marc Léger, President of Léger.
“With this new model, we can help our clients better understand the issues and more accurately identify opportunities,” added Louis Duchesne, Executive Vice-President and General Manager of Cossette in Québec. “By developing engagement, we can raise a brand’s profile higher and help it become a real storybuilder.”
10 audience profiles to measure engagement and its impact on a brand
Thanks to this new model, 10 audience profiles were created based on the level of engagement—from the most to the least engaged and active. The most engaged are true brand ambassadors who actively participate and get involved, by producing their own content in support of the brand, for example.
A clear diagnosis to understand the barriers and solutions
In addition to establishing a clear picture of an industry, a brand and its competitors, the Ovation model helps carry out a full diagnosis to identify the barriers that limit engagement and the solutions that can propel a brand forward. The Ovation model stands out by its ability to highlight the practical and emotional motives for engagement, as well as a brand’s potential to become a true storybuilder. By analyzing the results, we can determine that although emotional attachment remains vital, engagement hinges on practical appreciation. In fact, it’s the impact of emotional attachment and practical appreciation working in tandem that’s key to catapulting a brand from being a simple advertiser and storyteller to an authentic storymaker and storybuilder.
The Ovation model is now available.
Strategic Planning: Florence Girod, Stéphanie Leduc, Pascal Routhier, Mélissa Hébert
Account Services: Isabelle Beauchemin
Branding and Design: Richard Bélanger, Barbara Jacques, Philippe Brassard
Hélène Crépin, Vice-President, Consumer Goods Division
Christian Bourque, Executive Vice-President and Partner
Jean-Marc Léger, President and Founder
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With the slogan “Welcome to a style universe,” the campaign invites people to discover an inspiring, unique and cutting-edge environment. The platform gives a new twist to the brand’s well-known attributes, such as the leaf logo and signature green hue. The creative pieces feature some of the retailer’s collections, along with prices to illustrate Simons’ philosophy of style for all.
“The customer has always been at the heart of everything we do here. And in a new market like Mississauga, we want people to discover our passion, skill and especially the variety of our collections, created by local and international designers. Above all, we want to spread the message that we have something for every taste and budget,” said Philippe Normand, Vice‑President of Marketing at Simons.
In the same vein as the platform for the new store in Vancouver, Cossette created spectacular pieces, such as an urban mural and strategic media placement around Toronto and Mississauga, including on buses and bus shelters. The campaign also consisted of pre‑rolls, print posters and social media activation.
“Simons has a strong culture, backed by a rich history in Quebec,” added Antoine Bécotte, Chief Creative Officer at Cossette. “With this campaign, our aim was to raise Simons’ profile across Canada and propel it to the top of the market in Mississauga.”
In March 2015, Cossette announced it would be Simons’ agency of record for the retailer’s ambitious pan-Canadian development project, notably in the Vancouver, Calgary, Mississauga, Ottawa and Gatineau markets.
Roméo et fils - Kevin Calero
Cult Nation - Jason Brando
Montreal, February 25, 2016 – In line with the brand’s ambition to further accelerate its digitalisation in Canada, L’Oreal Paris has named Cossette as its digital agency, after an in-depth selection process. As part of this new role, Cossette will provide L’Oréal Paris Canada with strategic and technological support for web platform optimization, content development or consumer relationship management.
Meanwhile, assignments remain unchanged for L'Oreal Paris' canadian brand agency of record, Marketel McCann Erickson; and media agency of record, MEC Canada.
“Cossette demonstrated its ability to carry out digital projects that are creatively, strategically and technologically sophisticated. This combination of expertise convinced us that they were the ideal partner to help us extend our position as leader in the beauty in Canada” said Stéphanie Binette, General Manager of L’Oréal Paris in Canada.
“We are honoured to be working with L’Oréal Paris, a brand of national and international renown. They are a force to be reckoned with in a fiercely competitive industry, with whom we share both a culture of innovation and strong common values,” noted Mélanie Dunn, President and CEO of Cossette Canada.
A new model of cooperation
The agreement is founded on a new partnership model―Cossette will be compensated based on results.
“The client-agency model needs to be updated to reflect today’s reality. With this partnership, we aim to build a synergistic relationship with Cossette―to share the risk, and conquer the unknown. Cossette demonstrated openness to tackle this challenge right at the beginning of the process,” explained Stéphane Bérubé, Vice-President, Chief Marketing Officer at L’Oréal Canada.
“We fully support this vision―we continually strive to be more flexible, agile and open to change. Stéphane’s vision is bold, timely and consistent with our own. Gone are the days where the agency and the client worked in silos. We are now focused on common business objectives and are constantly called on to invest in our in-house talent,” added Ms. Dunn.
Cossette is an independent, fully integrated marketing communications agency that holds a dominant position in Canada and can call on a network of specialized agencies operating around the world. Cossette is a community of talents, a unique gathering of expertise and creativity that builds strong brands for its clients and maintains a dialogue with consumers. Cossette has offices in Quebec City, Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver, Halifax and Chicago.
ABOUT L’ORÉAL CANADA
L’Oréal Paris is a division of L’Oréal Canada, a wholly-owned subsidiary of L’Oréal Group, the largest cosmetics company in the world. Headquartered in Montreal, L’Oréal Canada had sales of $1,054 billion in 2015 and employs more than 1,200 people. The company’s prestigious portfolio of 35 brands encompasses all aspects of beauty.
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The communications strategy lets people travelling between Montréal and Toronto know that it’s possible to outmanoeuver treacherous weather by making the smart travel choice—and that’s to take the train. Before big storms, communications are ramped up with new creative pieces to encourage people to consider the forecast when making travel plans: digital billboards on the highway, takeovers of weather websites, pre-rolls, Waze banners, newspaper ads, dynamic banners that can be adjusted hourly according to the weather forecast, social media and relationship marketing with VIA Préférence members. On the day of the storm, it’s officially declared “A train kinda day.
“VIA Rail is the best way for travellers to get to their destination stress-free when weather conditions are difficult and unpredictable,” said Yves Desjardins-Siciliano, VIA Rail’s President and CEO. “Throughout the winter, and especially when the weather is inclement, we add more train cars to accommodate extra travellers.”
“This campaign’s core message is that the train is the optimal travel solution when the weather isn’t cooperating, especially in the wintertime. To highlight this idea, we tied the campaign to real storms, where we had snow, freezing rain and black ice. Before and on the days in question, we amped up our message on multiple points of contact to encourage travellers to make the safe, sensible choice,” added Antoine Bécotte, Cossette’s Chief Creative Officer.
To emphasize that the train is the bad weather travel solution, Cossette also created a 15-second pre-roll. This campaign will continue until March.
Client: VIA Rail Canada
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