Strategy Agency of the Year competition-The strategic judges

Michael CyrMichael Cyr is executive director, sales and marketing, for Boston Pizza International, a franchisor of casual dining pizza and pasta restaurants.Cyr is responsible for developing Boston Pizza's overall corporate marketing direction, as well as leading the franchise sales process.Before joining...

Michael Cyr

Michael Cyr is executive director, sales and marketing, for Boston Pizza International, a franchisor of casual dining pizza and pasta restaurants.

Cyr is responsible for developing Boston Pizza’s overall corporate marketing direction, as well as leading the franchise sales process.

Before joining Boston Pizza, Cyr spent 16 years in the Canadian beer wars, holding various sales, promotions and marketing positions with Labatt Breweries of Canada.

He has an mba in international business and a B.Sc. in psychology from McMaster University in Hamilton.

Favorite advertising:

1. Toshiba Notebook spot ‘I checked my notebook’ (tv) by Chiat/Day.

2. The Salvation Army campaign (tv, outdoor, transit, newspaper, radio) by bbdo.

3. Bell Advantage ‘Hooked on Fishing’ (tv) by bbdo.

General comments:

‘There was some good work, and a lot of great work.

‘In some cases, the differences were subtle, but the campaigns that were a pleasure to watch were the ones that combined insightful strategy with breakthrough creative thinking and execution.

‘Those were the ads that got my attention, forced me to evaluate the product, and motivated me to action – the essence of great advertising.

‘As one of my early mentors used to say, they had the right mix of `wisdom and magic.’ ‘

Marilyn Mersereau

Marilyn Mersereau is director of communications at IBM Canada, where she is in charge of advertising, event marketing, public relations, internal communications, corporate donations and trade shows.

Mersereau has had a unique combination of traditional packaged goods marketing experience (including eight years at Coca-Cola as director of marketing, brands) and retail marketing experience, with LensCrafters International and Burger King, holding positions in the u.k. and the u.s.

She is a graduate of the University of Western Ontario in London.

Favorite advertising:

1. Bell Mobility ‘Simply go’ (tv) by Cossette Communica-tion-Marketing.

2. Crispy Crunch Light ‘Self-discipline is hard’ campaign (tv and direct mail) by Leo Burnett for William Neilson.

3. Bank of Montreal ‘It is Possible’ campaign (tv) by Vickers & Benson Advertising.

General comments:

‘Of all the 10 agencies submitting creative, Leo Burnett’s work, time and time again, showed a consistent, yet imaginative idea at its core.

‘Their entire body of work evoked excellence.’

Dominique De Celles

Dominique De Celles is director of marketing, L’Oreal Cosmetics and Parfums Vanderbilt, at Montreal-based Cosmair Canada.

She joined Cosmair in 1985 as a product manager in the L’Oreal Hair Care division.

In 1989, she was made group product manager, prestige fragrances, during which time she launched Paloma Picasso, Safari and Polo Crest lines.

She has bachelors degrees in administration and commerce from the University of Ottawa and Ecole Superieure de Paris.

Favorite advertising:

1. The Salvation Army (tv, outdoor, transit, newspaper and radio) by bbdo.

2. McDonald’s Restaurants of Canada campaign for the 1994 Winter Olympics (tv, point-of-sale) by Cossette Communication-Marketing.

3. The Barnes Exhibit (tv, newspaper, magazine, outdoor and direct mail) by bcp for the Art Gallery of Ontario.

General comments:

‘The Salvation Army was clearly the best `fully integrated’ ad campaign I’ve seen, on a limited budget. The creative was as touching as it was powerful.

‘The McDonald’s Winter Olympics campaign was an outstanding example of what micro-marketing should be: a tailored campaign timed to an international event that touches Canadians nationwide.

‘It was the first campaign that actually brought tears to my eyes and made me feel proud to be Canadian – an excellent play on emotions.

‘Overall, Cossette came out No. 1, in terms of the creative, the efficiency of the message, its ability to brand and its versatility across various media.’

Louis Fortier

Louis Fortier is director of marketing at La Brasserie Labatt in Lasalle, Que.

Before joining Labatt six years ago as brand manager, Fortier was vice-president, account group manager at Montreal-based advertising agency bcp.

He has an mba in finance, and a bachelor of business administration in marketing.

Favorite advertising:

1. McDonald’s Restaurants of Canada spot ‘The Skater’ (tv) by Cossette Communication-Marketing.

2. Nissan ‘Interactive’ spot (tv) by Chiat/Day.

3. The Salvation Army ‘Clothing,’ ‘Shelter,’ and ‘Food’ spots (tv) by bbdo.

General comments:

‘The ad campaigns, which, in my view, appeared most powerful are those projecting strong emotional feelings.

‘Those that involve the viewer and make him react. The type that succeeds in bringing the viewer out of his or her passiveness.

‘The kind that succeeds in giving a taste of the product benefit, if the product is the main element of the ad.

‘The proposed implication by Nissan and the emotional involvement surrounding McDonald’s fries, are, from my viewpoint, the result of great creativity.’

Paul Gittins

Paul Gittins is manager, marketing and product development for Toronto-based Maple Leaf Meats.

Gittins joined Maple Leaf Meats in September 1993, after spending five years in the Agribusiness Group of Maple Leaf Foods.

He immigrated to Canada in 1988 from England, after having worked for Hillsdown Holdings U.K.

Favorite advertising:

1. Ikea Canada ‘ `The only time we ever have a sale’ sale’ campaign (tv/print) by Geoffrey B. Roche & Partners Advertising.

2. ‘Where on Earth’ campaign (outdoor) for Federal Express Canada by bbdo.

3. Crispy Crunch Light ‘Self- discipline is hard’ campaign (tv/direct mail) by Leo Burnett for William Neilson.

General comments:

‘Plenty of solid creative work, without anything truly outstanding. Maybe it’s the recession – battered clients being too cautious with the agencies.

‘For consistency, only one agency had a portfolio of ads, every one of which I felt did a good job.

‘I particularly enjoyed the print work – lots of flair and creative freedom.’

Darcia Joseph

Darcia Joseph is vice-president of marketing at Toronto-based retailer Eaton’s.

Joseph spent 12 years in account management, successively at F.H. Hayhurst, Ted Bates, Carder Gray and Miller Myers Bruce DallaCosta.

Most of her experience centred on consumer packaged goods, financial services and technology accounts.

She left mmbd as vice-president, to go ‘client-side’ when she accepted the challenge of retail marketing at Eaton’s.

Joseph graduated from the University of Western Ontario, in London, in Honours Business Administration.

Favorite advertising:

1. Toshiba Notebook ‘I checked my notebook’ (tv) by Chiat/Day.

2. Canadian Egg Marketing Agency ‘Nature’s Comfort Food’ (print) by Geoffrey B. Roche & Partners Advertising.

3. Vim liquid abrasive cleaner ‘Hogwash,’ ‘Saddlesoap,’ ‘Furniture Polish,’ and ‘Pot Scrubber’ (outdoor and print) by MacLaren:Lintas for Lever Bros.

General comments:

‘We seem to be getting back to the triumph of idea over technique.

‘There were many strong, simple positioning ideas in the work (some not fully realized in the execution); this seemed to be showcased in the print much more so than the tv.’