The Agency A List: C&B Advertising

The brand behind the brand
The C&B team sharing home-office setups and staying connected during COVID-19

The C&B team sharing home-office setups and staying connected during COVID-19

Calgary’s C&B advertising is creating award-winning work that’s helping local brands navigate uncertain times.

“We’re focusing on our existing clients and working to help them grow their businesses and manage their brands during a really challenging time,” says C&B managing partner Leigh Blakely. “The Alberta economy has been in a difficult place even prior to COVID-19.”

Blakely believes the eight-year-old shop is at its optimal size with its staff of 25. “We’ve grown based on client needs and invested in employees based on future areas of importance, whether that’s creative, digital or media,” she says. Recent hires include execution director John Boyd, who brings media expertise to the table from his prior remit as media director at Venture Communications, and creative developer Andrew Anderson, who enhances the shop’s digital capabilities.

The agency takes pride not only in its creative output but also in its diverse client list. C&B recently embarked on new work for Travel Alberta, ATCO and Bromwich & Smith, and won an RFP for the Alberta Urban Municipalities Association.

"Together for the Holidays" for Calgary Co-op elevated dining-room tables to their rightful place as the most important family gathering element for the festive season.

“Together for the Holidays” for Calgary Co-op elevated dining room tables to their rightful place as the most important family gathering element for the festive season.

And then there’s Calgary Co-op, which C&B helped to position as an integral part of family gatherings using Christmas as a way to reinforce the grocer’s role in festive traditions.

The agency devised “Together for the Holidays,” in line with the retailer’s larger brand positioning of “Together for Good,” which has since taken on a deeper meaning during the coronavirus crisis. Built on the insight that our most memorable holiday moments often take place around the table – and not in front of a Christmas tree – drove creative, reminding consumers that Calgary Co-op has all their hosting needs covered. The campaign included TV, radio, OOH, print, display, social and in-store POS.

For the Calgary Stampede, C&B pushed deeper into experiential channels for last year’s “Get Your Yahoos Out” campaign, developed to leverage Calgarians’ pride and emotion toward the iconic event and generate some much-needed community joy.

The Calgary Stampede's 2019 "Get Your Yahoos Out" campaign featured unique art installations and unexpected joyful pop-ups throughout the community, reigniting the passion the city has for its iconic event.

The Calgary Stampede’s 2019 “Get Your Yahoos Out” campaign featured unique art installations and unexpected joyful pop-ups throughout the community, reigniting the passion the city has for its iconic event.

The agency worked with the Stampede to create numerous unique art installations spelling “Yahoo!” throughout the community, even incorporating hay bales into the signage along major highway entries to Calgary. These were captured in online video and spurred thousands of user-generated social moments. The campaign also comprised of billboards and activations, such as a branded ice-cream truck, which helped fuel the Stampede movement and delivered its second-highest attendance with 1.27 million visitors.

C&B’s work continues to get noticed, earning a dominant 13 trophies at the Ad Rodeo Association’s last Anvil Awards, including Best of Show for “Calgary’s Rowdiest Office.” In addition to this Stampede campaign success, the agency picked up Anvils for its work with Calgary Co-op, Big Rock Brewery, City & Country Urban Winery & Tasting Bar and Peters’ Drive-In.

"Get it. Done." for United Farmers of Alberta (UFA) celebrates the organization's hard-working customers – farmers, truckers, and construction and industrial workers – whose jobs don’t follow regular office hours and whose work never truly ends.

“Get it. Done.” for United Farmers of Alberta (UFA) celebrates the organization’s hard-working customers – farmers, truckers, and industrial workers – whose jobs don’t follow office hours and whose work never truly ends.

Last November C&B scored eight wins at the Best of CAMA (Canadian Agri-Marketing Association) Awards for its campaign for the United Farmers of Alberta (UFA). The agency was brought in to develop a new brand positioning that would forge a much deeper emotional connection with the supplier’s customers and members, unite the organization’s lines of business, and increase sales across their retail, industrial and B2B businesses.

Tourism Richmond’s destination branding campaign "Pacifc. Authentic." brings the coastal city’s Pacifc setting and multicultural infuences to life in a vibrant, energetic style.

Tourism Richmond’s destination branding campaign “Pacific. Authentic.” brings the coastal city’s setting and multicultural influences to life in a vibrant, energetic style.

Immersive research included interviews with stakeholders throughout the business and ride-alongs with customers engaged in trucking, ranching and farming. The resulting insights were that work never really stops for the people UFA serves, and what they prize is the ability to finish their current task and move on to the next one. The creative expression of these insights was “Get it. Done.”

The new brand premiered at UFA’s Spring Launch and AGM, followed by the release of video “The Never-Ending Day” – on YouTube, social platforms and agriculture-related media – depicting a farmer’s non-stop life. Year-over-year sales increased 77% while the campaign was in-market and UFA website visits were up 28%.

C&B helped Big Rock Brewery, known as the ‘grandfather of craft beer in Canada,’ find its true voice by channeling the plainspoken tone of founder Ed McNally. The campaign yielded three Anvil Awards and four Merits for the agency.

C&B helped Big Rock Brewery, known as the ‘grandfather of craft beer in Canada,’ find its true voice by channeling the plainspoken tone of founder Ed McNally. The campaign yielded three Anvil Awards and four Merits for the agency.

The campaign is a case study in why C&B positions itself as “the brand behind a brand” – an extension of its clients’ marketing departments. Blakely elaborates, “As consumer trends change at a moment’s notice, many clients have added creative resources in-house, so it’s important that we are set up to work collaboratively with them, and build strong brand foundations that can be used to drive their businesses. That flexible approach is an important factor as brands face new challenges and need a partner who has their back and can

‘Get it. Done.’”

CONTACT:
Leigh Blakely
Managing partner
leigh@CandBadvertising.com