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Strategic Objectives Named IABC/Toronto PR Agency of the Year; Wins 17 Awards

This may be our eighth week of physical distancing, but our mighty Strategic Objectives Team still cleans up nice!


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Strategic Objectives swept the IABC (International Association of Business Communicators)/Toronto OVATION Awards, with 17 fab awards in a multitude of categories and was named Agency of the Year, again, for the eighth time in the last 11 years — all while dressed to thrill at a virtual Gala we’ll never forget. Yes 2020 is a year like no other.

Our wins — including seven Awards of Excellence — are in diverse categories including Social Media; Advertising/Brand Communication; Special/Experiential Events; Corporate Social Responsibility; Non-Profit Campaigns; Media Relations; and Writing.

We share these honours with our amazing team — the people who bring Smart Ideas and Better Solutions to life and push the boundaries with new ideas and dynamic approaches every day. We are infinitely grateful to our fearless clients who put their trust in our creativity and expertise to build, maintain and protect their brands. We are also grateful to the IABC judges, leading-edge communications professionals who gave of their volunteer time under lockdown to evaluate and recognize the best, most effective communications this year.

SO Exciting: 17 Top Awards

KIA Pre-Auto Show Media Events
Two Awards of Excellence: Special and Experiential Events and Writing; Award of Merit: Media Relations

Start your engines. Kia Canada wanted to invigorate its global brand mantra, “The Power to Surprise,” with lifestyle media during the crowded Auto Show timeframe. SO broke the Auto Show mould by creating three Pre-Auto Show Media Events in key centres, including a Toronto Valentine’s Day Soirée. Event guests could “swipe right” on a dating-style app to find their #KiaMatch, based on fun dating profiles SO wrote for each car. The overall campaign produced strong results across Canada and the Toronto event even prompted some great second dates.

Judge’s Comment: “A wonderful series of events that shows communication can deliver valid business results when done well.”

Groupe Marcelle, Lise Watier, Rouge Fondant Suprême Lipstick
Award of Excellence: Social Media Programs

This is not just lip service… our Influencer Marketing campaign for Lise Watier was the most successful lipstick program ever for the brand and resulted in unprecedented sales. Lise Watier was launching 20 new shades within its popular Rouge Fondant Suprême Lipstick range. To generate excitement, Strategic Objectives developed a multi-faceted, integrated social media brand ambassador program with four Canadian beauty/fashion Influencers, who each had her ideal shade named after her. Our multi-media content plan profiled the lipsticks on social media and results were outstanding.

Judge’s Comment: “Who knew lipstick could be so creative and interesting?”

Reese Wonge Instagram: @reesewonge

A&W Burgers to Beat MS
Award of Excellence: Media Relations; Award of Merit: Corporate Social Responsibility

When a burger is more than a burger. A&W Food Services is a proud supporter of Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada and the Company’s annual fundraiser – “Burgers to Beat MS” – is a one-day event in all 950+ A&W restaurants across Canada. Strategic Objectives works with A&W to create a dynamic, national media relations program to raise awareness and encourage participation. This year, A&W experienced its largest fundraising total for MS: $2.1 million in just one day!

Judge’s Comment: “The sheer logistics of executing this in one day… Excellent.”

SENOKOT: Scoop on Poop
Award of Excellence: Writing; Award of Merit: Media Relations

Why is there such a poo taboo in Canada? To get to the bottom of this issue, SENOKOT Natural Laxative and Strategic Objectives created a bold social PR program entitled SENOKOT Scoop on Poop. It centered around an unconventional survey and championed poo-sitivity, encouraging Canadians to get real about regularity. The campaign surpassed all objectives.

Judge’s Comment: “Exceptionally creative and demonstrates innovation and resourcefulness.”

foodora Launches LCBO Delivery Partnership
Award of Excellence: Media Relations; Award of Merit: Special and Experiential Events

This campaign delivered results! In September 2019, foodora announced an EXCLUSIVE delivery partnership with the LCBO in Toronto, a game-changer in the food delivery industry. foodora and Strategic Objectives developed a Social PR program which included extensive media and blogger relations, influencer outreach, and The Ultimate House Party Launch Event. Campaign and sales results exceeded all expectations!

Judge’s Comment: “Highly professional planning and execution. Excellent pitch materials, creative writing and timing of tactics.”

Kellogg Canada MorningStar Farms Veggie Burgers Launch
Award of Excellence: Special and Experiential Events; Award of Merit: Media Relations

Veg out Canada! In 2019, Kellogg Canada launched MorningStar Farms Veggie Burgers in Canada, and worked with Strategic Objectives to develop a multi-faceted, integrated launch program to break through the cluttered marketplace. The initiative utilized media and blogger relations, an innovative and interactive launch event with country music duo The Reklaws, and brand ambassadors which all resonated with the target audience.

Judge’s Comment: “A great campaign… has made me want to go buy some MorningStar Farms burgers.”

"The Reklaws” - Stuart and Jenna Walker

Canadian Centre to End Human Trafficking
Award of Merit: Non-profit Campaigns

Judge’s Comment: “Well thought-out plan and great execution. Congratulations on this meaningful work.”

Kellogg Canada Mini-Wheats
Award of Merit: Advertising and Brand Communication

Judge’s Comment: “A strong campaign that delivered desired results for the client.”

Kellogg Canada Bear Naked Launch
Award of Merit: Social Media Programs

Judge’s Comment: “You clearly attained some impressive results by executing a strategic social media campaign. Well done.”

Groupe Marcelle, Lise Watier, The Cleansers Collection Launch
Award of Merit: Social Media Programs

Judge’s Comment: “The ‘Get un-ready with me’ concept is great: simple and effectively conveys the purpose behind The Cleansers Collection.”

Loacker, Savour Serenity
Award of Merit: Media Relations

Judge’s Comment: “I liked the way challenges were dealt with in a creative manner.”

SO Proud to Collaborate

Our Strategic Objectives Team is SO proud to collaborate with our clients to create relevant, leading-edge campaigns that change minds and achieve tremendous results. Does your brand need help cutting through the clutter? Would fresh thinking and modern, award-winning storytelling benefit your brand? Please contact us. Who knows… we might even win an award or two together! Let’s give it a try.

About Strategic Objectives

Headquartered in Toronto and co-founded by partners Deborah Weinstein and Judy Lewis, Strategic Objectives is Canada’s most award-winning PR agency, and regarded as one of the country’s most creative, innovative, passionate, and successful communications firms. Named Best Mid-Size PR Agency in the World at the IABC Gold Quill Awards 2019, as well as IABC/Toronto Agency of the Year 2020, for eight of the last 11 years, we create results-driven programs integrating PR, social media, digital, experiential and influencer marketing strategies that achieve outstanding measurable results. Global experts in social responsibility and cause-related marketing, we are the only Canadian communications company to ever receive the exclusive United Nations Grand Award for Outstanding Achievement in Public Relations, and the only all-Canadian agency to be named to the PR News Top Ten CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) A-List.

Canada is our space. Our national, bilingual team includes an all-star roster of more than 30 top PR pros, strategists, storytellers, content creators, trend-spotters, trend-setters, designers, social media experts, video and graphic artists, digital developers and pop-culture junkies. We are obsessed with providing outstanding client service and doing things differently to deliver impactful, measurable results.

Visit www.strategicobjectives.com and follow us on Instagram and Twitter: @SO_pr.

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