Posts Tagged ‘Canada’

Our Strategic Objectives team staged our 13th annual Poutine Day Lunch on June 24 to honour St-Jean Baptiste,  patron saint of the province of Québec. To celebrate Québec’s distinct culture, official language and delicious food, our awesome SO_cial committee served up a mouthwatering, authentic, French-Canadian meal: poutine.


Now widely recognized as one of Canada’s most noteworthy “gourmet” meals, poutine is made with piping hot French fries smothered in thick, beefy gravy and curd cheese. Bien sûr, our SO_pr team, led by VP and Toronto International Dragon Boat Race Festival champion, Catherine Heroux (seen far left), had more than enough carbs on hand.


Dessert for our jolies madames and messieurs was typically scrumptious butter tarts topped with maple ice cream. Délicieux!


Our SO_cial committee is always looking for ways to keep the workday entertaining and fun.  With barbecue season in full force and plenty of summer celebrations around the corner, who knows what they’ll get up to next. Stay tuned to find out..

Bon Appétit and happy Canada Day, July 1, from all your friends @SO_pr


The world belongs to those who understand it. In the social media ecosphere, we at Strategic Objectives believe those who understand their audiences best have the highest likelihood of generating the best results. PRs need to understand how to tell a brand’s story and make it speak to audiences so effectively that the message can transcend all platforms and inspire sharing. PRs are natural communicators, but even here, you really need to understand your audience to maximize results.

Everyone is trying to figure out user behaviors online. Once we understand behaviors, we can better understand how to reach our target markets and build the best and highly-engaged online communities for our clients. What if we were to say most gamers have never been to college? What if we were to tell you there’s a strong use of social networking in the workplace?

Social Media Today recently released some statistics on social media usage and its demographic landscape. The statistics are deduced from 900 websites that average 9 million visits/month per site and offer some very valuable, not-so-surprising and nonetheless interesting results on user data. That data can be found in the chart below, where we have also created a quick summary of the research findings.



Demographic Findings:

  • Social networking is dominated by younger generations with no children, and online networking activity picks up in college
  • Social networks are most popular among the youngest generation (18-34) and are used less frequently for each successive age group over 35
  • Youth ages 18-24 tend to use social networks to supplement social life, learning, and having fun.
  • The most diverse use of social networks comes from the 25-34 year old age group.
    • Continue to use the services they used in college, but less often
    • As they start to have new interests (business, family), they are most likely to use online social engagement to benefit their business/career, discuss or plan travels, and share family-related experiences online
  • The 35+ demographic show technological bias against social networking.
    • High likeliness of these age groups to use business, family, and dating networks
    • Stats also suggest that social networking’s popularity among youth may be not just be due to technological differences, but to a better fit of interests
  • People with college-level education tend to have a higher rate of social for participation with networks across the board.
    • This suggest the expanding network once in college
    • Also demonstrates there is a tremendous amount of information shared between students


Outlier Findings: Two categories break this trend

  • Gaming has an unusually high participation rate among people without college experience
    • Likely that a high percentage of gamers are young
  • Places has a very high participation rate among people with graduate-level schooling
    • Likely positive correlation between graduate school and income, and between income and travel.


Male VS Female Findings:

  • Gaming is strongly dominated by males
  • Lifestyle and family is strongly dominated by females
  • Dating, Places, and Business are used more often by females
  • Education networks are used most by males


Location Findings:

  • Strong use of social networks in the workplace
    • Distraction or sign of increasing application of social websites for practical purposes?

Public Relations has awesome power to reach into the hearts, minds and wallets of targeted consumers.

Never has this been more true than now, in the social era, when everyone has the right to be their own publisher and to spread info they/we believe is important, relevant and engaging for our audiences.

My work in Marketing Public Relations began back in the 80’s when I co-founded our national, full-service PR firm, Strategic Objectives, with my sister and partner Judy Lewis. Both former TV and radio producers with CBC, CTV and Global TV networks, we’d been on the receiving end of copious off-target PR communications for many years. We knew there had to be a better way to share and spread brand information and to harness the value of credible third party endorsements from key influencers, the media, stakeholders and consumers.

Looking back now, more than 25 years hence, I am reminded of the French saying “Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose,” – the more things change, the more they remain the same!

Yes the world has become much, much smaller with the advent of the fax machine, PC, cell phone, camcorder, digital camera, laptop, smart-phone, tablet and social networks – all devices and platforms that allow us to communicate instantly. But the basics of results-driven communication and the practice of PR remain the same as when we started Strategic Objectives back in 1983.

  • Craft a solid, reliable, relevant story
  • Tell it to the right audiences that need/want to hear it
  • Be honest and real; show integrity with everything you do
  • Be innovative, integrated, inspired and inspiring
  • Be proactive, reactive and follow-up meticulously
  • Be prepared for issues/crisis management
  • Be consistent and true to your brand –
  • Be cautious, the internet forms a permanent record –
  • Be nimble, seize the day and every opportunity –
  • And most importantly, love what you do!

At #SOSlam we’ll discuss the brave new world of social sharing and networking; and the profound impact it has on the way we see, do things and conduct business. But it’s important, at the same time, to remember that social media is a tactic, a tool and sometimes a weapon. What it is not, is a strategy, a foolproof path that will take us directly to the fulfillment of our personal and professional goals.

Social media is an awesome new avenue that, like most technology, allows us to do more for ourselves, faster, easier and more independently. It is also uncharted territory, an ever-evolving landscape that challenges, titillates and provokes us with the thrill of the unknown, not-yet-mastered and still unconquered.

I look forward to learning more about social media with you at #SOSlam and to meeting the awesome tweeps who will converge on Knoxville from 12 States and Canada (pick me), on Wednesday, April 13. See you there. Can’t wait!

For more info on SOSlam please check out:

Deborah Weinstein, @DebWeinstein, is president of Strategic Objectives,


Our Strategic Objectives PR team was proud to welcome Marshalls, one of the world’s leading off-price retailers, to Canada this Spring! Marshalls, with more than 820 stores across the U.S. launched its first three Canadian stores in the Greater Toronto Area on Thursday, March 17, with three more stores set to open in Ontario this fall.

To get the media on board with the story our SO team hosted a media sneak preview on March 16, the day before the official store opening, to share news of Marshalls’ arrival with Canada’s national and Toronto-based traditional and social media types.

Canada’s fashionistas were thrilled to tour the new store; discover its enormous and stylish offering; learn how to find Spring’s hottest looks and brands at unbelievable discounts; and interview Marshalls spokesperson, Hollywood’s stylist to the stars, Phillip Bloch. Mr. Bloch has worked with celebrities ranging from Jennifer Lopez to Jennifer Aniston, Halle Berry and Sandra Bullock and is the author of several books, including The Shopping Diet. Funny and friendly, he was happy to share tips on how to create Spring’s hottest looks on a shoestring budget at Marshalls.

More than 20 top Canadian media outlets made the pilgrimage to Marshalls’ sneak preview for the inside scoop on Canada’s hottest and newest fashion retailer.

“I made Canada’s first purchase at Marshalls!” says Rita Zekas of the Toronto Star, Canada’s largest distributed newspaper. “I bought a come-to-me-mama pair of shoes. They’re going to follow me home and get along with all the other shoes in my closet. I’m calling them my Gucci coup.”

The media was generous with its coverage. Please check out these great stories.

Toronto Star

Toronto Sun

Winnipeg Free Press Business

Winnipeg Free Press Lifestyle

Globe and Mail video


Strategic Objectives was delighted to partner with Marshalls  and celebrity stylist Phillip Bloch to build fame and fortune for the brand in Canada.

Last week I was interviewed by the awesome Michele Price (@prosperitygal) for the Women in Business Radio podcast. As some of you may know I’ve enjoyed an extraordinary adventure leading to where I am today, president of Strategic Objectives, Canada’s most award- winning PR agency (if not, please click here to see My Most Excellent Adventure video). Along the way I’ve learned many useful tips for the woman who wants it all. It was wonderful to chat with Michele and share my story of a true twenty-first century business woman who really does have it all (or SO I think).

Although we have been friends on Twitter for a quite some time, Michele and I met last summer IRL at the #Ungeeked conference here in Toronto.  We hit it off instantly and developed a strong virtual friendship.

I hope you enjoy our conversation. Please feel welcome to comment.

Deborah Weinstein (@DebWeinstein)

What did you do for New Years? Oh we worked it!

What do you get when you mix: the HOTTEST social media mobile; Canada’s most popular bloggers; some rowdy contest winners; a VIP experience P Diddy would be proud of; and our awesome Strategic Objectives PR team? … An EPIC wild night out to remember!

A PR pro might normally hesitate when asked to work New Year’s Eve but this was certainly not the case for me and here’s why. Our client INQ Mobile 3G, Canada’s hot new social mobile phone wanted to throw a party, create mega buzz and earn awesome social media coverage.

Our @SO_pr solution was to create a fun Facebook contest for INQ and Canada’s party-loving public. Our program invited socialites to join and “like” the INQ Canada Facebook page, upload their most legendary party pix, and get their online peeps to vote, vote and vote again for their fave party crew. We also recruited top Toronto bloggers, Raymi The Minx and Casie Stewart, to help promote the contest online.

Our mega prize was a fully-loaded VIP New Year’s Eve party in Montreal, that would make even a Kardashian PRoud.  We would equip our contest winners and bloggers with a Twitter hashtag (#INQNYE) and set them loose in Canada’s most exciting party city.

Once the votes were tallied and our winners, John Wilkinson and Jean-Philippe Boudreault, selected (each with three friends in tow), it was time to get’er done! Off to Montreal we flew. A fleet of Escalade limos were waiting at Pierre Elliot Trudeau Airport to whisk us off to our chic boutique hotel. Our stay included two nights at Montreal’s luxurious and trendy W Hotel, with an all-expenses-paid shopping spree for our contest winners and bloggers at Style Exchange. After that it was off to hair and makeup at a trendy downtown salon, for tout le monde, in prep for our luxe night out.

We partied like rock stars on New Year’s Eve with a fully-loaded VIP experience at Bainsdouches, a very cool and exclusive club, with bottle service and burlesque performances. The dancers were chic and cheerful and the staff made sure we all had a fab time! Needless to say, everyone was late for brunch on New Year’s Day. Here are some photos from our epic INQ Wild New Year’s Eve Night Out 2010/11.

By: Andrew F Stewart

Entry-level positions are among the hardest jobs to land. Competing against a roster of profiles that looks scarily similar to (gasp!) yours – How do you get YOUR stiletto in the office door on the first day?

  1. Be your own Brand Ambassador on and offline! Have a (positive!) footprint and be consistent throughout your platforms.
  2. If you landed an interview: You passed the first step. Now impress: Give examples, know your audience and show what you can do for them and smile.
  3. Don’t “talk” too much on your resume; it isn’t your book. Do highlight your strengths.
  4. Interview them as well and ask smart questions. They are choosing you as a candidate but you are also choosing them as an employer.
  5. Respond ASAP: to an interview request, a ‘Thank You’ post-interview or decline/offer.
  6. Remember Body Language! Have a firm handshake. Always look the interviewer in the eye, calmly, smile, be relaxed, comfortable. (No one wants to hire a nervous Nellie).
  7. Be yourself- No one wants to hire someone only to discover someone else in a month!


Christie Hill, Consultant at Strategic Objectives.