Tweeting for a non-tweeter

At the beginning of the month the ruckus crew posed a challenge to one another: Use a social platform you don’t usually use. We all have our favourites and not so favourite social platforms. (My favourites are Snapchat and Instagram and not so favourite are Twitter and Facebook.)

So, for one week I tweeted multiple times per day. A couple of my colleagues were tweeting away with me – similarly they tend to stray to more visual platforms (read Instagram and Snap) on any given day.

To give you an idea of my usual social habits, it goes something like this: wake up and immediately scroll Instagram, watch a few Stories and then switch over to Snap and skim the Discover section for major news stories or a few laughs. Throughout the day I’ll head back to Instagram and Snap to check out what’s new and to keep in touch with friends. I don’t use Facebook or Twitter personally, only for work.

Most of my tweets over the week were making fun of myself or the platform (sorry Twitter), because I just couldn’t seem to get into it.

But, that all changed thanks to Pepsi’s giant ad blunder, here’s a recap in case you missed it. The Pepsi/Kendall Jenner debacle became the highlight of this experiment. Twitter was amazing for not only keeping all the articles, relevant trolls and tweets consolidated under one trending topic, but the commentary was entertaining as well as insightful. I found a ton of new accounts that I now follow – on Instagram – and catch up with daily. Man Repeller I’m looking at you!

After this little challenge I appreciate Twitter for its niche market in real-time trending topics/news, but once I find the accounts I’m looking for, I still head to Instagram or Snap to see what they’re up to.

I know Twitter is making the effort to claw back to relevancy for the masses; they plan to launch live video 24/7 and are trying to crack down on abuse on the platform. They also just announced their latest earning’s report that had a few bright spots too, including an increase in user growth.

The experiment was great as it pushed the team out of their social comfort zones.

Sarah Rogers is a digital account coordinator at ruckus digital. For more digital insights or to chat about your strategy, drop us a line.

Fort McMurray Wildfire: Social Media Response

Last month, Jordan Redshaw and Robin Smith from the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo (RMWB) made our third ruckus makers speakers series one to remember.

In May, the largest insured disaster in Canadian history struck. The RMWB, including the city of Fort McMurray, was hit by a wildfire. More than 90,000 individuals were evacuated from the city and were not able to return for a month.

Communication was essential in providing residents with accurate and timely information via social media so that residents remained safe.

See Twitter highlights here:



Clients are embracing more “open relationships” with their agencies

The notion might be scary, but open or shorter-term agency relationships are representing the new reality of current marketing environment. In-house marketers can really play the field until they find a partner they love, but they can also love other agencies in the meantime, said Matt Lewis, President of Momentum Canada.

So how can we cope and be prepared for this new reality?

On Tuesday, December 14th, the American Marketing Association – Toronto chapter hosted a panel on the agency landscape in 2017. The discussion was moderated by Andrew Grenville of Matchbox and the panel of industry executives included:

Each panelist presented how their agency or business is approaching these changes and the following insights stood out to us:

  • Execution is just as important as the big idea. It is exciting to present big innovative ideas to clients, but it’s important to ensure an excellent execution across the marketing funnel. Bring together your super team – even if it’s separate agency partners – to truly tackle a key problem for clients and make sure the big idea matches the execution needed to bring it to life.
  • The “bespoke” agency will win tomorrow. The borders between PR, advertising, digital marketing, media buying and shopper marketing agencies have been blurring for a while now. Recognizing that no two clients are identical, the agency (or inter-agency) team that can rise above these divisions and create unique, multi-channel solutions to market challenges are best poised to lead the race in 2017 and beyond.
  • Creative doesn’t just come from the creative department. Be open to listening to the innovative ideas from the people who work across the business. Creative and innovation needs to live across the whole customer experience. With the proliferation with social media and shifting consumer preferences, the customer experience today IS the brand.
  • Don’t be scared of data and automation. With the advancement of new technologies in media and research, agencies are being presented with opportunities to show true ROI to client and we should embrace them. Creative, technology, media and product need to work together to truly provide innovation and a solution for customers’ needs in order to win mind share.

For more insights from the night, check out the hashtag #AMAevents.

Katie Boland, @kathrynboland is a Digital Strategy Account Manager at ruckus digital @ruckusdigital where we embrace the idea of a bespoke agency and working with creative partners!


13 Tips for your LinkedIn Profile

LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional network with more than 467 million registered users. In Canada there are 13+ million users (around a third of the population).

But, just because folks have a LinkedIn profile, doesn’t mean they’re using the platform effectively.

And, given that LinkedIn is 3 times more effective than Facebook or Twitter for generating leads, combined with Microsoft’s purchase of the platform this year (expect more integration with your day-to-day Microsoft software), it’s a good idea to revisit your presence there.

Below are a few tips that were shared in a webinar with client RSA Canada last week, to help maximize your LinkedIn presence:

  1. Get an appropriate headshot. LinkedIn is often your first impression to someone. Your photo does not have to be a professional shot, but ensure it looks professional (i.e. not your best vacation picture).
  1. Add a banner photo. This is prime real estate on your LinkedIn profile and an opportunity to stand out while giving individuals an opportunity to get to know you better.
  1. Generate a custom URL for your profile. LinkedIn automatically generates a URL for your profile, but take it a step further by customizing it to make it easier to remember. (i.e. www.linkedin.com/in/name)
  1. Customize your headline & add a summary. Consider what you’d like to convey in a succinct headline and summary so that someone can capture your professional profile at a glance.
  1. Make your experience more than just a résumé. Because LinkedIn has the ability to be so much more than a standard 2-page résumé, what else can you add? (e.g. awards, speaking engagements)
  1. Think about your keywords and search optimization. If someone did an online search today, would your expertise come up because of what you have on your profile? If not, add more detail.
  1. Give recommendations. By giving someone a recommendation on LinkedIn, chances are they’d be willing to reciprocate. Third party testimonials add to your credibility.
  1. Get more connections. Quality connections are key, so a good rule is to add someone only if you’ve met in person. It’s also important to regularly add individuals (e.g. bi-weekly) for a healthy network.
  1. Use the relationship tab. LinkedIn will track communications you’ve had on the platform with an individual, but when you add someone, write down how you met and alert yourself to follow up.
  1. Share original content. To have a more robust digital footprint consider sharing business updates, relevant articles and insights that position you as an expert and helps potential clients trust you.
  1. Create blog posts. The best types of content will start/change the conversation. Create a halo effect by piquing interest to see what else you can offer or provide inisights to a niche audience.
  1. Always stay current. Pop onto the platform a few times a week (i.e. phone app while on the go) to see what connections are talking about or if they’re in the news. Be sure to comment when appropriate.
  1. Engage with groups and companies. Whether through a company page or in discussion groups, post comments/insights a couple times per month to extend your digital reach.

Diane Bégin enjoys diving into strategy on social platforms like LinkedIn. Need social media training? Drop us a line.

3 Instagram Tips Confirmed by the Experts

Last night I headed to Brainstation Toronto – a tech education hub – for my first #InstaMeetTO.

The event brings together social enthusiasts from across the city, all equally eager to curate an amazing Insta feed. With a stacked panel of artists and brand managers, there was sure to be a ton of insights.

Content creator Dani Rey @daniirey moderated the panel of experts that included,

While a lot of great advice was given, from my perspective (as an account coordinator working on the social for several consumer brands), three important Instagram tidbits were confirmed.

Instagram content MUST be visually b-e-a-u-tiful.

Reusing content for multiple platforms is cost effective for a brand, but doesn’t always translate to an amazing feed and super engaged Insta-community. Brands need to be thoughtful (strategic!) in the content they post to Instagram. Product focused shots that work on Facebook might not necessarily get the same engagement in the world of Instagram.

Michelina made clear that Lululemon’s success on the platform (they have over 1.7 million followers on their global account) is thanks to their careful curation of (mostly) non-product shots. @lululemon features images that evoke the feel of their brand through places their audience would want to explore and experiences their audience would want to share.

Bigger isn’t always better.

Audience size is a KPI that most clients want to tackle (Grow our followers please!). However, there is something to be said about a smaller but highly engaged audience versus a massive following that cares little about your brand. Follower growth isn’t something that comes quickly either. But with a clear vision, great content and a little collaboration (with partners, brand ambassadors/influencers, etc.) the following will come.

Move over Snapchat (sort of).

Brands can (and should) leverage Instagram Stories. From behind the scenes shots, to event announcements, to giveaways, to those not so great (but still good) visuals, Instagram Stories offer a more flexible space to post content that doesn’t quite fit the feed. Audiences aren’t expecting perfection on Stories, so brands can have some fun while reaching a larger audience (don’t forget those people creeping around the Explore section).

Sarah Rogers is an account coordinator at ruckus, working on social for retail, alcohol and fashion clients. Follow her on Instagram.

Make engagement your own

Guest blogger,Lauren Chin-You, provides her insights on Dx3 x FITC Community Management Conference (CM1) here in Toronto. CM1 provided lively discussion and reflection on the challenges and successes faced in the growing field.


Engagement. Do you really know what that means? Or is it just an overused buzzword we throw around? Experts gave nine ways to make engagement work for you at the second annual Community Management Conference #CM1TO on May 22 at CBC’s Glenn Gould Studio.

  1. Define it.Clarke de Pastino, VP of Engagement, Ipsos SMX challenged us to define it before sharing his golden rules for keeping communities active, meaningful and most importantly, engaged. Too often we get caught up in managing a community and forget what it’s like to truly be a part of one.

People want to see the impact of their contribution within a community, and be recognized for it. The community relationship works both ways, and putting in some extra time to establish personal connections with followers builds invested interest.

  1. Make the investment. Having thousands of followers on a brand page doesn’t equate engagement. Fans are virtually useless if they aren’t invested in the brand or its content.

As Destin Haynes from HooteSuite mentioned, you want vibrant online communities to inspire and empower audience members. Creating a lasting bond with customers encourages them to become brand ambassadors, which in turn helps you expand into new markets and get in touch on a local level.

Localization goes beyond translating products, it’s about creating the right content to build partnerships—and that starts with listening to your audiences.

  1. Be the link. As the VP of Social Media at Rogers Communications, Keith McArthur knows the most important skill a community manager must have is the ability to listen. Community managers act as the bridge between customers and the corporation and as an advocate for both sides, listening can help them determine what to say and what not to say.

McArthur shared key learnings from Rogers and profiled the importance of knowing your audience’s issues, and being transparent about managing and resolving them to become a better ambassador of customer needs.

  1. Take it to the next level. And customer needs are constantly evolving as Tessa Sproule, Director of Digital Content, CBC noted from a broadcast perspective, the medium is the message but our audience is often the message too

Gone are the days where producers could focus on the show or the brand, today it’s about the fans and how they’ve immersed themselves into the story. To build a passionate community you have to stoke fans’ enthusiasm and follow their lead.

  1. Give it some personality. Engaging with those fans doesn’t mean simply replying either. Responding in a timely and cheeky fashion also helps according to Gregg Tilston, Global Social Media Leader, from Flight Centre Travel Group. Tilston noted within every issue is an opportunity; an opportunity to improve, grow or provide value.
  1. Make the campaign support their content. For YouTube, Bob Cornwall from Google explained building a community means putting the content first and campaign second. Brands have to win moments that matter for their fans, and Cornwall encourages the hero, hub and hygiene formula.
  • Hero. To grab attention, brands release their hero content, also known as the “go big or go home” moment where the goal is to get as many views as possible.
  • Hub. From those views, brands target customers they want to incorporate on another level by creating moments that intersect with their passions and interests –the hub– so they form a connection to the community.
  • Hygiene. And to retain those loyal fans, brands push their hygiene content which focuses on the brand and its products.
  1. Create a pleasant surprise. There are other ways to retain loyal fans (or customers) as well. Mitchell Fawcett, Founder & Agency Director, Motive Communications shared the art of surprising and delighting your customers and the impact it has on your relationship. 

Businesses and brands should always consider what their customers value and what they can offer in relation to this. Going that extra mile to personalize a message or treat helps put you in the forefront of their mind.

These little rewards don’t have to come with an expensive price tag either, Fawcett shared his simple tricks like framing a photo stolen from Instagram or sending a virtual card to celebrate someone’s birthday.

  1. Go the extra mile. When selecting who to surprise and delight, new and loyal customers may top your list but consider influential media as well. A pleasant surprise can open doors and spark a conversation between influencers and brands—if the brand keeps the relationship going.

Blogger Casie Stewart made it clear that when it comes to brands, she’s in it for the long haul. Stewart doesn’t just want a gift in the mail, what she wants is the follow through to show this is a relationship.

Establishing this connection and communicating with an influencer can work wonders for your community. If there ever comes a time when your brand needs support, you know who to leverage, which is exactly what Tangerine did.

  1. Ask them for support.Andrew Zimakas, CMO, Tangerine Bank pinpointed how you can tap into your community for support. During the transition from ING DIRECT to Tangerine, Zimakas and his team turned to their community and brand ambassadors for support.


From cm1.ca: Andrew Zumakis presents on Tangerine’s Re-Brand Strategy

Change can spark uncertainty and Tangerine leveraged these relationships to help the company reassure clients and Canadians that they still uphold the essence of ING DIRECT, just with a different name.

Tangerine also recognized and rewarded their offline community, its employees, for their continued support. Employees are a brand’s biggest advocates, reward them for embodying the brand values and share their voices through your channels. 

We’d love to hear from you if want to jump-start your brand’s social communities and engagement.

Lauren Chin-You is an Account Coordinator at APEX PR where she supports multiple client events and campaigns. You can also find her on Twitter @lchinyou.

Posted by
on 29/05/2014

What’s old is new again – How brands are changing televison

Brands like Chipotle are changing the game when it comes to programs and films. With options like Netflix and Hulu, they’re able to move past the old 30 second ad spot.

Radio soap operas – back in the day, these were the first instances of branded media content. An hour of radio drama brought to you by Dial or P&G.

Now, flash forward to 2014, where a new show called Farmed and Dangerous will start airing on Hulu in February. On the surface not particularly remarkable – but this show is completely funded, subsidized and produced by burrito restaurant Chipotle. Everything old is new again.

This week’s ruckus-makers (Feb 9 – Feb 13)

This week’s ruckus-makers (Feb 9 – Feb 13)

Check out our round up of all the great campaigns, links and notable reads this week.


– Twitter and Google got together recently and now your tweets can be found using the world’s most popular search engine. Digiday breaks down what this means for you


– To promote the final season of Mad Men, AMC is making a play for show superfans and user generated content. And it actually looks like a lot of fun. See it here.

– The U.S. Navy recognized that they market to a very select target audience when creating this content. Gamifying your content is always a great way to engage an audience, making them an active participant. 

– Sticking to the theme of engaging content, Air France ran this fantastic contest on mobile to promote it’s new seating options in Asia. 

Posted by
Serge Leshchuk
on 14/02/2015

This week’s ruckus-makers (Jan 26 – Jan 30)

This week’s ruckus-makers (Jan 26 – Jan 30)

Check out our round up of all the great campaigns, links and notable reads this week.

Industry News:

Snapchat started the year with a bang. Fresh from pledging to put more dollars behind content creation, they’ve now rolled out their new Discover feature. #Discover on Snapchat,

Twitter Officially launched their native video feature (featuring no less than Neil Patrick Harris), offering the ability to upload 30 second videos directly to the app. What does this mean for Vine? Well we’ll have to wait and see. New Twitter Features

Campaigns we liked:

Controversial Seattle running back Marshawn Lynch opened up to the media in his own special way. Find out how Skittles smartly jumped on an opportunity for some brand synergy. Skittles

To help promote the new show Stalker, BBDO Belgium put together this clever campaign tying in to users Linkedin accounts. Stalker

From ruckus:

Check out some of the other new features Twitter launched this year and how they will affect your brand and content. Twitter – Updated features you should know about

Posted by
Serge Leshchuk
on 30/01/2015