Reno Depot positions itself as a DIY destination

The home improvement retailer introduces new spokesperson Dave Morissette as it prepares to ramp up its marketing presence.

Reno Depot is wasting no time in deploying Dave Morissette in a new campaign that aims to reconnect with DIY enthusiasts in Quebec.

Last week, the home improvement retailer announced that Morissette – former pro hockey player and current sports analyst – would be its new spokesperson and centrepiece of upcoming campaigns. Yesterday, it launched a new spot created by Sid Lee that shows him working on a backyard renovation project for the summer – one that keeps presenting new opportunities for things to build and add, resulting in more trips to his local Reno Depot store.

While the 30-second TV spot focuses on Reno Depot’s seasonal selection and introducing Morissette as a spokesperson, the campaign will also feature shorter 15-second spots on TV and online that focus more on key product categories such a kitchen, bathroom and flooring. Morissette will appear across platforms for the brand, including in-store flyers and radio ads.

“Dave is a DIYer himself, but he has been very successful in Quebec over the last few years by being very passionate about what he does,” says Charles Valois, VP of central marketing at Lowe’s Canada. “He adds that Morrissette’s values align both with what Reno Depot wants to stand for as a brand and what’s important to its target. “Our customers are very similar. The type of customer we are targeting is the DIYer that is really proud of what they are achieving.”

In 2013, cuts at parent company Rona resulted in Reno Depot repositioning itself as more of a wholesale retailer offering a smaller product selection at a reduced price, and Valois says it has had a “very minimal” marketing presence in the years since. But in 2016, U.S. hardware chain Lowe’s acquired Rona and, by extension, Reno-Depot. Since then, the company has been building up Lowe’s and Reno-Depot as its large footprint banners – with Reno Depot it uses its brand familiarity to focus on consumers in Quebec – while Rona is more of a “medium-sized” format with a smaller product selection but easier proximity for more frequent visits.

Valois says this campaign is the beginning of Reno Depot’s beginning to grow its marketing presence again. Reno Depot has been doing a great deal of consumer research and segmentation work in anticipation of both the brand’s 25th anniversary and to begin talking about the results of recent growth efforts. Those efforts include reopening stores in Quebec and expanding its product selection, including into newer categories like appliances and seasonal. It’s also an opportunity, Valois says, to begin rebuilding the Reno Depot brand and positioning it as a destination for that aligns with the values of DIYers in Quebec.

“With the anniversary, the timing was very good to reconnect with Quebec customers by adding a spokesperson that fits with them,” Valois says. “You’ll see him supporting all the key pillars that are going to be important to our growth.”