Social Media in Canada

This week in MMC5006 – Intro to Multimedia Communications we are discussion Social Media (SM).  Now in the past seven weeks SM has been discussed multiple times, whether as part of Push & Pull Marketing, IMC or the different platforms/tools, but this is the first week where it has been the focus as a whole.  In this week’s assignment I have been asked identify three brands that are using at least five SM platforms, and discuss their IMC approach, branding and content.  I have decided as the only Canadian student on this course to use three specifically Canadian Brands.

CANADIAN TIRE

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Canadian Tire is one of Canada’s best known retail companies.  It was originally established as an automotive retailer, however has expanded to sports and leisure, and home products.  It is well known for its loyalty program introduced in 1958 that involves Canadian Tire money.  They are in the process of adding a digital loyalty system, but will keep the bills (as seen in the photo) as well.  Canadian Tire is also well known for its Jump Start program which is a charity that helps children from families in financial need participate in organized sports.

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Canadian Tire has established a very specific and recognizable brand.  It has a solid IMC strategy, and from its money, to TV commercials, to all of its social platforms it has maintained that brand.  Canadian Tire has a presence on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, LinkedIn, and YouTube.

 

Not only does Canadian Tire have a solid brand strategy, they maintain a very Canadian element to their messaging both in their commercial advertising as well as their charity work.

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Canadian Tire is excellent at providing up-to-date and content that is relevant to consumers.  In fact, most of their social platforms have a corporate version and a Jumpstart Program version, however both are closely linked.  In addition, their LinkedIn page focuses more on the corporate leadership, marketing awards, and other businesses that Canadian Tire is working with in the Jumpstart program.  It should be noted that the company is an active user of hash-tags so that the conversations about their marketing and charitable campaigns can be followed.  In addition, they actively use their SM presence to drive traffic to their other platforms and their website.

 

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The Hudson’s Bay Company (HBC)

HBC is a Canadian Retail group that includes their flagship stores Hudson Bay (Formerly The Bay), Home Outfitters and Saks Fifth Avenue to name just a few.  It traces its origins to the original Hudson Bay Company (circa 1670) which established trading outposts throughout British North America and controlled the fur trade during this time.  An important part of the brand is the distinctive Hudson’s Bay blanket.  Even though the corporation uses all of the major SM platforms, they are set up to represent the specific company, with the HBC sites being for Hudson Bay.

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The problem facing HBC was that their flagship store had been floundering over the past decade.  In fact it was their other retailers and business investments that were keeping the company afloat.   So in 2013 there was a major push to modernize the brand.  This must have been a challenge because how do you modernise a brand without losing the elements that had made them recognizable.  Following this rebrand, there has been a really strong effort to focus their IMC social efforts towards platforms that their target audience uses (largely 40+ women).  So HBC produces and posts regular content on Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter.

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HBC is a regular user of YouTube, and they have posted several of their campaigns on their channel.  The most successful of these campaigns was “Shop Your Mood”, which allowed viewers to click on clothing to get more details:

HBC is also a regular use of hash-tags so that customers can follow their campaigns, as was demonstrated in the above YouTube videos.   After review of all of HBC’s SM presence, it is apparent that this is a relatively new endeavor for the company, and this is effort that they are going to need to continue to focus on if they hope to remain relevant and competitive.  So what was once viewed as an outdated brand, is being revitalized largely through their growing use of SM.

Molson Canadian

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Founded in 1786, the Molson Brewery is the second oldest Canadian Company after the Hudson’s Bay Company.  In 2005, it merged with Coors, and the Canadian division is known as Molson Coors.  The flagship beer of Molson Coors in the Molson Canadian.

In order to promote its product, Molson Coors uses two main activities: Hockey & Concerts.  They use all of the major SM platforms to promote their product(s) and the events that they sponsor.

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As you can see from the embedded images, Molson Canadian maintains a strong branding throughout their platforms, and they are major users of hash-tags.  Unlike Canadian Tire and HBC, this company is trying to build more of a community type feel.  This of course is based upon beer being a social drink.

 

The only point of improvement for Molson Coors would be to better use your SM pages to drive traffic to your website and other SM platforms.