HelpHub: A guide on how to deal

Strategy's resource centre for career, financial and mental health support has been updated with interns looking for work and resources to build your brand post-COVID.

helphubHelpHub is a resource centre that aims to guide advertising and marketing professionals and businesses during a time of crisis. Strategy will regularly update the channel with resources for financial and health support, educational tools, networking opportunities, as well as virtual event and job listings.  Also check out CauseConnect, a platform connecting marketing industry assistance with non-profits who are facing a disruption in fundraising.  If you have any supporting resources for Strategy to add to its HelpHub, contact Jennifer Horn at

Education/Leadership/Business services:

Beattie has launched a business transformation division that’s meant to help companies hit by the coronavirus lockdown. The business transformation team includes senior directors Wayne Silver, Chris Gilmour, David McCavery, Nicole Amiel and chairman Gordon Beattie. Companies can plan their recovery strategy with a 30-minute Beattie Tartan Rx Bootcamp session with the senior leadership team. To book, contact Nicole Amiel at Beattie is working with clients across the health, entertainment, hospitality, retail and building sectors.

IG Wealth Management has created a new program, called “Answering the Call,” that will support small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) and their communities as they navigate financial challenges. The program includes: – free live regional webinars with tax, financial planning and investing specialists – videos from experts on a variety of topics – insights on tax planning and how to better understand and access government programs – the opportunity for SMB owners across Canada to be matched with a local IG Wealth Management advisor for a no-obligation consultation. The company has also set up an initiative that will see as much as $500,000 donated by IG to support local businesses and their communities.

is offering a complimnetary package that outlines how businesses can secure media opportunities for themselves in order to have their stories heard by the community. “We don’t think that lack of budget should prevent businesses from having access to the influence and clout that media opportunities can provide, which is why we are sharing the fundamentals needed for businesses to kick-start their own PR as they begin to build their brands up again post-COVID-19,” said Erica Morgan of Wild PR. The free resource can be downloaded from Wild PR’s website.

Tony Chapman’s podcast, Chatter that Matters, is helping to personalize entrepreneurs’ stories so that listeners can better identify with them, the numerous challenges they face and understand how vital they are to a functioning economy. Each episode of the podcast, which is presented by RBC and being promoted across 60 radio stations, begins with a central question, like “can small businesses survive?” then taps into an entrepreneur’s dream, backstory and how COVID-19 has caused a pivot to their business. Check back each week for a new episode.

The experiential strategy, creative and delivery agency created the “Bring Your Own Brief” initiative, offering free-of-charge services to all businesses in the hospitality industry that have been affected by the pandemic. The program aims to help restaurants and bars prepare for business in the “new normal” in anticipation of a reopening date.

The BC-based digital marketing company is helping business owners generate revenue during the countrywide lockdowns. It is offering free services to disrupted businesses, providing them with “discovery & pivot” sessions — which includes a deep dive into a company’s operations, an analysis of their competitors, identification of ways to pivot (opportunities to increase revenue) and how to make pivoting achievable.

The creative consultancy has launched the “Here to Help” initiative, offering creative thinking to small and medium-sized businesses, as well as not-for-profits. The Toronto-based firm says it’s looking to help vulnerable organizations come out of the crisis in a way that respects their COVID-19 budgets and realities. “We’ll figure out a way to make it work financially for you, whether that’s by a deferred payment, charging you a much reduced rate or in some cases not charging you at all,” said Peter Shier, president of Naked, in a video announcing the program.

The studios have partnered on a charitable initiative called #CreativityForGood, which aims to help struggling organizations amid COVID-19 by offering free content development. Faulhaber Communications has also joined to help provide free PR to those organizations. So far, it has created an animated social video for Good Shepherd Ministries to help them drive donations for their work with shelters, and has put out a call for more orgs to reach out. Those that would like to access #CreativityForGood can apply through

Sherpa has created an initiative that provides pro-bono marketing services to deserving SME’s. They are also looking for other agencies outside the geographic area of Kitchener-Waterloo and Winnipeg that would be willing to do the same.

Thinking Box CD Ricardo “Brad” Correia has offered up a month of his creative expertise to small businesses and start-ups struggling with COVID-19 to help them promote their services and get back on track.

The Canadian Agency Network (tCAN) network is now offering free advice to small, medium and large business and non-profits looking for help in navigating the impact on their organizations. The network is comprised of veteran marketers, including Frank Palmer, tCAN chairman, who have experience working through crises from the SARS outbreak to the 2008 recession. Businesses looking for a leg up can get access to the members, who will share communications aid, counsel and guidance on how to weather the coronavirus storm. 

The Centre of Excellence has taken 98% off the price of its Ultimate Creative Writing Course Bundle from US$1,650 to just $30. The program includes 10 courses, each focusing on a different style of writing, from travel blogging to novel writing, and even calligraphy. Each course also gives hundreds of CPD points, which can be added to your resume.

So you suddenly have more time on your hands than a retiree? Why not brush up on your marketing knowledge? IBM and AdWeek are offering free educational courses to distract you from twiddling your thumbs. So far there are two courses available: Monetizing Engagements and Advanced Marketing Technologies.

Don’t put off for tomorrow what you can do today. Take the reigns on preparing for what’s next with Toronto futurist Leah Zaidi’s guide to hundreds of post-COVID-19 scenarios, based on the context of your organization. The report contains a comprehensive look at what might emerge as we face the new normal, and how you can prepare.

OCAD U CO (an executive training studio) has compiled a handy guide of information that ranges from how innovation leaders are thinking about COVID-19 challenges, from conducting customer and user research remotely to case studies of organizations driving distributed innovation and the different focus areas leaders can champion to navigate uncertainty.

Pantone has made its paid-for service available for free to designers and creatives until July 2020. Their Pantone Connect service helps graphic and fashion designers build palettes and match Pantone colours digitally through Adobe Creative Cloud.


Humber College is looking to place some of its students at agencies and production studios as part of its summer internship program. Students from digital and social to PR, advertising, film and photography programs are all ready to work on business problems for clients on an unpaid basis, and completely remote. Contact Humber professors for more information: Manager of placements Larisa Duravetz at Larisa.Duravetz@humber.caManager of communications and continuing education, Faculty of Media and Create Arts Natalie St. Pierre at; business manager Felicia Guthrie at; and Associate Dean, School of Media Studies Robert Richardson at

StrawberryFrog saw 700 applicants apply to its Tadpole intern program earlier this year. Sadly, because of its office closure and the challenges of onboarding interns while working remotely, it had to put the program on hold. So to make up for the loss, the agency created an Intern Masterclass. The program is curated for students of all skill levels and who are interested in learning more about “Movement Marketing,” purpose-based marketing strategies and activation, employee campaigns to change behaviour, and more. The Intern Masterclass will take place on July 16th, 2020 from 1pm to 4pm via Zoom. Registration opens on July 1st, 2020 at 1pm EST. Register here.

The Canadian Marketing Association (CMA) is now offering its newly created career guidance platform for free. Students and those in the early stages of their career can find insights, advice and tips from Canadian marketers on how to navigate their next steps. The association worked with hiring managers, marketers and business experts to curate and present information and guidance (such as how to develop soft skills, build your personal brand and what companies look for in job applicants) within videos and blog posts.

Top creatives have generously offered to take Zoom meetings with advertising students to discuss any feedback on their portfolios or answer any questions they may have about the industry in general in this time of turmoil.

- Dentsu: Creative resource manager Amanda Binks is helping connect creatives with students, contact her at – Target: Ashley Abbott is helping to coordinate and direct portfolios to a senior creative who has capacity, contact her at - DDB: ACDs Daniel Szczepanek & Allie Keith can provide feedback via Zoom on student portfolios, as well as field questions about the industry.- Huge: Allen Oke is providing counsel to students via Google Hangouts on how to craft work for this new age of marketing. - Doug&Partners: ECD Matt Syberg-Olsen is offering written feedback to students on their books, contact him at

To celebrate a colleague who passed away suddenly in 2019, Arrivals + Departures, in partnership with Humber College, created a scholarship for a student in the Advertising – Account Management (Graduate Certificate) program within the Faculty of Media & Creative Arts. They are celebrating her legacy by giving this scholarship to a student who exhibits the traits that made Noela so special.

The One Club for Creativity has rolled out its annual in-person review program into a free global online review platform. With the creative industry still churning out graduates who have fewer possibilities in these times, the One Club is looking to help students get in front of top industry professionals.

Who’s hiring:

  • NEW! Freelancer pool 

    The CRRAL platform was created to help agencies struggling with combing through haphazardly created lists of freelancers. Instead of searching through their Facebook, LinkedIn and emails, agencies can use the free (for now) platform to track down available talent. “Basically, it’s a real-time rolodex of freelance talent,” said CRRAL in a release when it launched in early June.

  • FCB/SIX Looking for: Senior AD
  • Nestle Looking for: Digital content designer
  • nabsconnects NABS Canada and The Talent Code have teamed up to create its own free job board, where job seekers who are going freelance (some for the very first time) can put up their skill sets, and employers who are looking for workers in any capacity can post open positions.
  • Target Looking for: Associate Creative Director, Senior Art Director, Strategic Planner, Designer.
  • Goods & Commerce  Looking for: Project Managers, Graphic Designers, Illustrators, Industrial Designer, Presentation Designers, Video Production Specialists, Copywriters/Proof-Readers

  • ThinkingBox Looking for: Creative Director, Senior Visual Designer, Art Director, Data Analyst, Digital Creative Strategist

  • Calling all contractors

    Sophomore has developed a public spreadsheet since a lot of ad shoots are suspended until further notice, which leaves a lot of free time for production crew members. The database of cinematographers, photographers, editors, illustrators and more shows who is looking to take on “side hustles” until regular production resumes.

  • Communo:

    The Communo platform was created to match vetted talent with marketing agencies that are looking to staff projects or positions. Typically individuals pay for the service, but last week, the company decided to waive its fees and give away free membership to freelancers in its bit to support the industry during COVID-19.

Government support:

The government is supporting businesses both large and small, commercial and non-profit, that have been impacted by COVID-19. As part of its Economic Response Plan, the government will provide a 75% wage subsidy if a business’ revenue has decreased by at least 30% as a result of the pandemic.

The federal government’s new relief package will be accessible in early April. Individuals are encouraged to apply online if they’ve had to stop working due to coronavirus, are quarantined or looking after someone who is sick with COVID-19, are self-employed or are still employed but have been asked to not come into work as a result of decreased business. They will be provided a taxable benefit of $2,000 a month for up to four months

An adjustment program that’s designed to help avoid layoffs. It’s a combination of Employment Insurance and reduced work-load which allows employers to retain staff, but reduce payroll without asking anyone to take a pay cut. If an employee’s work week has been temporarily reduced, Service Canada will give them income support while they continue to clock in, but at reduced hours.

The banking institutions consulted with the government to design an Emergency Business Account for small and medium-sized employers. The account is “an interest-free loan of $40,000, guaranteed by the government, for qualifying businesses — and up to $10,000 of that amount will be forgivable for businesses meeting certain conditions,” according to Scotiabank.

Jennifer Robson, a Carleton University professor, has put together an easy-to-understand guide on the financial assistance programs being offered by the government. Usually, a lot of government communication con be a little difficult to navigate and digest, especially for those who are stressed about their finances. Robson’s handy PDF entails things like Employment Insurance, Caregiver Benefits, rent subsidies and other financial issues Canadians may be facing in the wake of COVID-19.

Mental health support:

A comprehensive resource for tips on how to manage the anxiety that comes from working from home in the age of coronavirus. The NABS resource centre aims to educate people on the causes of this anxiety, recommendations on how to mitigate negative thought patterns, webinars and a support line for anyone who needs immediate help.

Firms can turn to the National Standard of Canada for Psychological Health and Safety in the Workplace – also known as The Standard - to understand how to deal with mental health in the workplace during these trying times. It’s a free management tool, offered by the Mental Health Commission of Canada, with guidance on critical event preparedness and managing change. The commission has also included a guide about how to deal with your own mental health during the pandemic here.

Marc Gordon, a consultant and public speaker, realized that dwindling sales were not the only issue companies were facing during the wake of COVID-19, so too is mental health. To address the growing problem, he created a series of videos featuring HR and mental health professionals to help people and businesses deal with specific COVID-19 situations.

Industry associations: