Retail

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Risky business

Leslie Root isn’t afraid to ruffle a few feathers.

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The communicator

From crisis control to landing coverage in every major Quebec news outlet twice in five months, St-Hubert’s director of marketing Jean-Claude Hardy is a master communicator.

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The ultimate personal shopper

Your local grocery store is about to get a lot more high tech – and CPG marketers, as well as participating retailers, will reap the rewards.

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Profile: Rogers

As the country’s second largest ad spender, with an account estimated to be as much as $86 million, Rogers Communications has been rather quiet lately. The search for an AOR, from which current agency MacLaren McCann withdrew, is likely why.

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McDonald’s: Adapt or die

McDonald’s has been very much lovin’ the splash its latest global campaign made on the company’s fortunes, reversing an unprecedented slide in sales over several years.

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Hot Wheels test drive

Kids are getting the chance to test-drive their Hot Wheels before breaking open their piggy banks. Until Oct. 10, Mississauga, Ont.-based Mattel will park a 36-foot trailer and set up a tent outside 16 Toys R Us locations in Ontario, allowing shoppers to check out the new fall collection.

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In store for the future

Retail analyst Richard Talbot bought his digital camera many months ago, but he has yet to crack the little book that explains it. So he probably isn’t fully aware of the camera’s cool capabilities.

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Outstanding new campaigns

The goal was to let everyone know that Indigo now stocks your favourite cuppa joe alongside the reading material, so the Grey

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Indigo wants kids to read

Chief booklover Heather Reisman is looking for her own Apprentice.

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Fall spend forecast

The perennial top spenders are government, automotive, and food, but lately entertainment, technology/telecom, and healthcare/pharmaceutical advertisers have joined the ranks. With multinationals like Procter & Gamble looking to redistribute media spending and cut back on TV, these newcomers will become more and more important to broadcasters as traditional categories finetune their media mix. Still, don’t look for new categories to jump into conventional this season. You will, however, see some trying specialty TV for the first time.

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Mainstream retail spices it up

Sears, Ikea – even The Brick – respond to growing consumer demand with new ethnic offerings

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Quiznos slashes price, touts 20 new low-carb subs

Quiznos Sub is serving up the ‘largest low-carb menu in Canada,’ with a new ad campaign to match.

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H&R Block: from tax partner to financial partner

Tax king repositions for growth with flagship store, new market group and maybe even year-round ads

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How can they put the blockbuster back in Blockbuster?

Like most revolutions, the one ushering in DVD technology isn’t equally rewarding all of its staunchest supporters. Blockbuster may have helped lead the move to DVDs, but New York-based parent Viacom recently made quite a statement on the future of the rental market by announcing plans to divest itself of the movie rental king. Viacom cited a DVD rental market that is slumping because consumers are deciding to buy (primarily from large retailers such as Wal-Mart) rather than rent. Business is down in Canada as well, but Blockbuster, which operates 411 stores here, says it’s going to fight back.

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Selling to the store

Vendors are now spending more on trade promotion than any other form of marketing – so why are so many in-store programs described as ‘just dreadful’?