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A Whyte Christmas In Old Strath

Old Strathcona Business Association

The Old Strathcona Business Association supports and promotes the businesses in Edmonton’s historical Old Strathcona area, especially along Whyte (82nd) Avenue. They help with promotional campaigns, restoration projects, and general operations throughout the neighbourhood, keeping customers happy and businesses running smoothly.

Create a campaign strategy to stir up activity and awareness of Old Strathcona as a destination for almost any need.

The Project

Everyone knows what the holidays should look like: trees, lights, mistletoe, snowdrifts... We've seen the Christmas specials (we admit it, we cry every time the Grinch's heart grows three sizes). But it usually ends up being rushed and panicked. What with all the family to feed, presents to wrap, and parties to arrange, there's hardly any time to relax and enjoy the season.

Old Strathcona set out to change that by organizing holiday events for shoppers to enjoy. We'd previously worked with them to create a Back to School promotional campaign. So when the snow started to fall, they asked us to design a Christmas campaign around their events, which would build on the Back to School momentum while promoting their holiday happenings.

Branding The Campaign

Inspired by Edmonton's freezing winters, we designed a cool, clean aesthetic with lots of blue and Whyte (get it?). This was applied to a wide range of materials like flyers, window decals, postcards, and Old Strathcona's social media properties.

But it didn't seem like enough. Old Strathcona needed a new character to embody their special brand of Christmas spirit. Everyone does Santa and elves and reindeer. We chose a yeti, complete with mittens and a friendly grin. We took the best elements from all our designers' ideas and put them together to create something fluffy and adorable.

He even came with his own backstory: the yeti lived in the Rockies, but he was originally from Nepal. His favourite activities were surprising friends with presents and giving great big hugs.


Yeti Sightings

The yeti was shy, but just like his cousin Bigfoot, he kept getting caught on camera near local businesses. The blurry photos found their way onto Facebook. For the first week of the campaign, people commented on the photos to guess where they were taken and be entered to win a daily prize.

488 Comments in 1 week Location 01 Location 02 Location 02 Location 03 Location 03

Naming The Yeti

The next week, the people of Old Strathcona decided that the yeti seemed friendly, so they accepted him as a part of their Christmas season. Now he just needed a name. We created the "Name the Yeti" Facebook app so people could submit names. Each entry qualified users for even more daily prizes.

One of the names was Eddy, and it fit like a glove.

Once they got to know Eddy, the good folks at Old Strathcona were inspired by his enthusiasm for giving. They held a giveaway contest for a $1,000 shopping spree. The "Name the Yeti" app was switched over to the giveaway app, which allowed people to enter once per day. And the lucky winner received gift cards for stores throughout the community.

Giveaway App 228 Named entries in one week 2,518 Wish list entries over 3 weeks
Eddy With List

The Christmas campaign was a huge success. Old Strathcona created a fun, friendly holiday season for Edmonton's shoppers, increased awareness of all the services they offered, and boosted their brand reputation—and those of their tenants—as a result.

382 New Facebook Likes 2,485 Given away in prizes 2,746 Entries over 4 weeks Eddy went home Eddy went home

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