Tag Archives: toronto

Hailo Toronto to Shut Down


It’s heartbreak hotel over here in Emma-land. Earlier today, Hailo announced that they would be shutting down North American operations. At the time, Toronto office lead Justin Raymond said he would be asking for a licensing deal with the parent company.

Well, Hailo just announced they would not be giving Hailo Toronto a license to continue operations in Toronto.

A representative for Hailo says the company is shutting down all markets completely, and won’t be striking a licensing deal in Toronto.

This is a tragedy. I’ve been a vocal fan of the Hailo app since it arrived on the scene in Toronto in 2012. I remember writing a blog post announcing their launch and how excited I was to try it out.

It’s been one of my go-to apps over the years, and I’ve been so proud to support a company I’ve believed in. In comparison, I’ve been a big critic of Uber, primarily for what I believe to be their shady business practices and I will refuse to support them here in Toronto, even though they are the only viable option left.

To me, this opens up a huge whitespace in the market that a new app could easily fill. I hope they come soon, because “winter is coming” and I get cold walking home. To Hailo Toronto employees: I’m so sorry. You’ve always been nothing short of awesome. I hope you can find solace in the fact that you had many, many fans.

New Ad for Pan Am Games is Definitely ‘Epic’

Screen Shot 2014-10-06 at 11.34.56 AMThe Ontario Tourism Marketing Partnership Corporation (OTMPC) recently launched their first spot for the Pan Am Games, happening in Toronto, summer 2015. To say it’s ‘epic’ is a bit of an understatement. Watch to see what I mean…

This ad comes at the perfect time to help bolster Toronto’s flailing image, amid the hysteric circus that is city hall and the less-than-positive mayoral race happening in advance of voting this coming October. While the ad is meant to “[communicate] the scale, intensity and drama of the games [and] ultimately, to build tourism awareness and drive attendance,” per FCB’s website, the agency responsible for this spot, FCB would be smart to note that while this ad works well for potential visitors, it can also help become a beacon of pride for us civilians who are a little less than proud of our city as of late. (I’m sure they’re quite aware of this fact. ;) )

I’d love to see more work in this vein that shows off Toronto, perhaps less on a dreary day? Of course, for this spot, the mood works really well to make it a dramatic piece, but it doesn’t exactly show off our stunning cityscape or beautiful buildings.

Regardless, a powerful spot and very well done. I noticed a few familiar names on the list of agency folks (hi Mona and Rob!) and I’m looking forward to what will hopefully be more content from this campaign.

What Does 20,000 Tweets Mean?

Tonight, January 1, 2011 (1/1/11), I hit a nice milestone on my Twitter account: 20,000 tweets.


I’ve been on Twitter since January 7, 2008. At first, I didn’t use it much. I actually put a lot of thought into the tweets I did write. I felt like the content had to be of much higher quality than, say, a Facebook status update. Obviously, that has changed for me to be tweeting at a rate of 10,000 tweets/year. (Can we say, “Yikes!” here?)

I got really into Twitter when I was working down in Australia, funnily enough. My job allowed for enough time to play around on Twitter, follow new people, chat with people in Toronto and Halifax. It helped me keep my pulse on these cities I loved and pass the time at a job I couldn’t love.

I remember reading about one of @d_hock‘s first tweetups and being jealous I couldn’t meet all these really cool-sounding people too. So I was very excited when I came back in April, 2009 and was actually able to go out and meet all these people I had been chatting with through Twitter in person! One of my first Twitter events was the Refresh Summer Social, actually. I met @jeremywright, @joncrowley and others that night for the first time.

In any case, I thought a nice way to commemorate my 20,000th tweet was to do a Top 10 list of the things I have loved about Twitter. Without further ado:

TEN Obviously, meeting some amazing people who have me thanking my good luck every day. You know who you are & I love you all.
NINE The community you feel when watching great moments on TV, i.e. Olympics. Like having 300 friends in your living room, laughing with you.
EIGHT Staying in touch with what’s happening back home in Halifax, through my Halifax tweeps.
SEVEN Being able to say I was the very first person @mynameisguygal met off Twitter. Honoured!
SIX Getting to know my coworkers better through their tweets.
FIVE Finding very cool, awesome, awe-inspiring or plain funny articles, YouTube clips, and songs y’all curate for me every day.
FOUR Having celebrities tweet to me! Notably, Hal Sparks and Heidi Montag. Whee!
THREE Having an outlet for my #foodporn addiction!
TWO Discussing and debating advertising/social media/PR topics with some of my industries’ top experts and inspirations.
ONE It bears repeating: All of you. You are what make me love Twitter so much! Thank you, thank you, thank you! Much <3.

Here’s to the next 20,000 tweets! And who knows where they will take me!

New Stayfree Ads: Condescending & Awful

Hey ladies!

You know what I wish I had?! A date with an absolutely flawless man who talk to me in a completely condescending way about something they will NEVER GET – literally and figuratively: Periods!

Yes, you’re a man, Brad, Ryan and Trevor. And only men can be the experts on feminine hygiene, according to BBDO Toronto. Because us women? Well, according to these ads, we’re mute and dumb! We don’t get complicated things like menstrual products. It’s just too HARD to understand what products we use every month and you never do. My brain hurts! All I want to do is watch you take off your shirt and educate me on what it’s like to be a woman.

Let me show you what I mean:

Oh yes, and there’s two more ads like these that are JUST as creepy, ladies. Yaaaay.

First of all: What the fuck were the planners thinking on this one? Did Stayfree even GET planners for this account? Let’s be clear about this: This strategy? This direction? Completely missed their target. Like, you missed this SO hard that I’m surprised you even know what a man is and a woman is. If you’re not sure, they are COMPLETELY SEPARATE GENDERS. OK? OK!

BBDO Toronto, I ask you seriously: Did a man come up with this (creative) strategy? Because it reeks of man.

This infuriates me. It creeps me out. I’m bored! And I’m not even angry I’m bored at these terrible, terrible ads and that you wasted 7.5 minutes of my life because I’m too pissed off at everything else about these commercials!!

Look: I’m a woman. I try really fucking hard some times to be everything society tells me to be. I try to be cute. I try hard to keep my weight down (because apparently I love “thinness”). I try hard to be a great cook (and succeed! I make a mean pasta dish, seriously). I try to volunteer and then feel guilty about not giving enough time or money. I can’t even try to like chores.

To have a man come onto my TV screen, look me in the eye and outshines me in every way does not make me want to date him. I don’t even want to be near him. I certainly don’t want to listen to him tell me about how great Stayfree’s panty liners are in a “just smile and nod, darling” way.

Here’s a better idea for Stayfree: Get to know your target. OK? You’ll find out some interesting things! Like, we’re not fucking dumb! And we don’t look to men to tell us what to buy! I KNOW! DID NOT SEE THAT ONE COMING!

Just to clarify this for you, this is your target:

Now that we have our target, let’s write a strategy!

“Stayfree’s feminine products work just as hard as I do.”

Stayfree? Call me.

Thanks to my mom for passing this along to me. As you asked, here are my thoughts about it!