Shell continues sustainable PR

Call it sustainable public relations. Shell Canada is busy polishing its corporate image with the launch of a new national campaign - the second stage in a corporate branding blitz.

Call it sustainable public relations. Shell Canada is busy polishing its corporate image with the launch of a new national campaign – the second stage in a corporate branding blitz.

‘We know full well that society has expectations of businesses like ours,’ explains Jan Rowley, Shell’s manager of public affairs. ‘Our ability to continue depends upon public trust.’

The multi-pronged campaign launched in mid-September and will run until mid-November. With the tagline ‘Action Today with Tomorrow in Mind,’ the national program includes spots on CTV, CBC, and Bravo, as well as ads in publications such as Report on Business magazine, Time and Canadian Geographic. The rollout also includes ads on Internet sites such as Yahoo! and Canada.com.

The template for the ads was developed by J. Walter Thompson’s London, U.K. office, but executed by the agency’s Toronto group, according to Rowley.

She adds that the aim of the campaign, which is mainly targeted at opinion and business leaders, is to educate Canadians about Shell’s commitment to the environment and sustainable development, as well as to shape public opinion about the company.

There are several versions of ads, but they all have one thing in common: The people in them all work for the company or are somehow impacted by Shell’s operations in the community.

For example, one spot features two men who work at Shell’s Athabasca oil sands project near Fort McMurray – a mine manager and a local Aboriginal businessman. Another print ad introduces a university student talking about what he had learned while doing an internship at Shell. The campaign continues a theme introduced last year, which marked the first corporate branding undertaken by Shell in almost 20 years.

Client: Shell Canada

Agencies: J. Walter Thompson U.K. and Toronto Copywriters : David Rossiter/Jason Buback

Art Directors : Stuart Baker/Judy Townson

Account Managers: Natalie Vonlanthen, Janice Foote

Account Executive: Jeff Robinson