TFO Two Year

Entertainment/Content/Media (BRONZE)

Client Credits: Groupe Media TFO
Creative Directors: Mark Mason; Jane Murray; Cher Campbell; Sean Ohlenkamp
Designer: Louis Chapdelaine
Art Directors: Gail Pak; Ryan Speziale
Writers: Jordan Gabriel; Mike Greco; Martin Rivard
SVP, Client Services: Marie-Lise Campeau
Account Director: Frederic Morin
Director of Production: Beth MacKinnon
Digital Agency Producer: Neal Owusu
Agency Producer: Caroline Wrinch
Printer
Production Company

Agency Credits: Lowe Roche Advertising
Lowe Roche Advertising
Lowe Roche Advertising
Lowe Roche Advertising
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Lowe Roche Advertising
Flash Reproductions
ONE Collective

Videos

TFO Master - Jan 30.mp4 (154 MB)

Attached Files

TFO Two Year Assets.pdf (14 MB)

Total 2932 Words

Section I — BASIC INFORMATION

Business Results Period (Consecutive Months):October 2011 - October 2013
Start of Advertising/Communication Effort: October 2011 – December 2013
Base Period as a Benchmark: calendar 2011

Section II — SITUATION ANALYSIS
a) Overall Assessment

Canada has a special history with language. As an official bilingual country, where one language group is in the minority, there have always been issues surrounding language and how it works to form notions of identity and culture. In Ontario, where 95% of the population are English speakers, the province’s French-speaking population have felt these issues even more acutely.

As a solution, the provincial government created TFO, and for over two decades, the media organization has been recognized as an indispensable institution for all Franco-Ontarians. But even treasured institutions can sometimes find themselves drifting from their core essence - and public favour. This case tells the story of how TFO recognized this, and made the changes necessary to re-invigorate its brand for its next chapter.

For more than two decades, French Groupe Média TFO has been recognized as an indispensable institution for all Franco-Ontarians. It's mandate and primary objective is to promote francophone culture and education in Ontario.  To re-enforce the importance of its role, the brand had become known for portraying itself as a martyr for French culture in Ontario, with public communication efforts often portraying TFO as very serious, highbrow, and exclusive.

However, in 2011, internal research by the organization (2011 Internal Research Study, Groupe Média TFO) confirmed what executives had long suspected - that for some time, TFO had in fact been perceived as quite exclusive and elitist, speaking only to Ontario’s French-speaking cultural elite. It also confirmed the organization was perceived as quite dated, and primarily for viewers “of a certain age.” Moreover, for the first time, executives were able to results forced the network executives to face what they already feared to be true – that these impressions were to blame for the fact that TFO viewership had remained flat for many years.

With TFO’s 25th Anniversary approaching the challenge faced was clear:  How can a regional French language TV network reposition its brand to be more broadly relevant ­– to excite its existing followers and expand its audience – all while manoeuvring around the sensitivities associated with language in Canada?



b) Resulting Business Objectives

Our overarching objective was to change perceptions around TFO and their perceived role in Canada while also bringing this brand to life in our communication that aimed to re-establish TFO's importance in the Ontario and Canadian society.

 

To accomplish this, we needed to refresh the brand to recapture the imagination of audiences and re-introduce through a multi-layered campaign that would:

 

1. BROADEN APPEAL WITHIN ONTARIO & NATIONALLY

The Network had a diverse range of content that could appeal to English audiences outside of its perceived niche target. However, the brand would need to communicate with the public in a new way to convince English Ontarians that TFO is a network worth watching. This would have to be done carefully to ensure current Francophone viewers were not alienated. Increase in appeal would be measured by a comprehensive, third-party, IPSOS ASI* post-initiative tracking study.

 

2. DRIVE DIGITAL ENGAGEMENT

In the online space, the network had the opportunity to provide more in-depth education through activities and programming – re-enforcing relevance to potential viewers. Therefore, the second core objective was to drive digital engagement. The goal was to increase traffic to the TFO website by 15% (YOY) and increase traffic and fan base on their Social properties by 30% (YOY).

 

3. INCREASE VIEWERSHIP

If TFO could successfully make themselves more appealing to this new broader audience; the ultimate goal was that viewership would then begin to improve. The goal for the first campaign, post-rebranding was to increase viewership by 20%, given our recent history of declining viewership numbers. 



c) Annual Media Budget
$3 - $4 million


d) Geographic Area
Ontario & Quebec


Section III — STRATEGIC THINKING
a) Analysis and Insight

Even though French may not be the majority language in Ontario, or in Canada; we realized that the French language itself carried a unique currency.

To Franco-Canadians it speaks to shared history, common roots, and identity.

To Anglophones, we noticed that the language had a different appeal. To some it held the ‘allure’ of French culture, wrapped up in the arts and culture programming where TFO excels. To others, education was the appeal; with many English-speaking Canadians sharing a growing interest in French language and culture education for their children - another area of programming strength for the network.

We decided to make ‘French-ness’ the hero of its campaign, and position TFO as the best way to inject more ‘French’ into your life – whoever you might be. By proudly ‘owning’ French language, we hoped to leverage cultural pride amongst French speakers to get them to tune into the channel, and nascent interest amongst English speakers to get them to explore the channel’s programming.

RESEARCH INFORMING STRATEGY

From research we had discovered a core truth: That French culture held a unique currency. But would this alone be enough to revitalize the TFO brand? We needed to dig deeper.

As an officially bilingual country, there have always been issues surrounding language in Canada and how it works to form notions of identity and culture. TFO was created as a network to provide Franco-Ontarians with their own culturally relevant content, distinct from what their Anglophone-Ontarian counterparts were interested in. However, more than two decades later, the reality was that perceptions of – and interest in – French culture had evolved quite significantly in Ontario.

To investigate this further, we underwent extensive qualitative research with English Canadians which ultimately helped us uncover our critical insight – that today the ‘je-ne-sais-quoi’ of French culture had a very broad appeal – there was an energy, an attitude, and a way of life that was still a “badge of honour” to Francophone's, but was now openly admired by Anglophones. This was especially true of the younger Anglophone generations in Ontario, who were more open-minded and interested in French culture than their preceding generations.

Armed with this knowledge, TFO now had a unique opportunity: leverage this growing interest to develop broader interest in the network.

The big idea became to reposition TFO as the Network that makes “French-ness” both enticing and accessible to those who simply love French (Francophiles) in addition to those who speak it (Francophones).



b) Communication Strategy

In 2011, we launched the official TFO rebrand which was followed by "La Je-ne-sais-quoi Télé campaign", focusing on the Francophone and Francophile markets of Ontario aiming to trigger action using a three-pronged approach:

 

1.         WAKE THEM by introducing a revitalized brand

2.         SHAKE THEM into seeing the TFO offering in a completely new light

3.         MAKE THEM engage with the brand by taking its message directly to them

In 2011, we injected some much needed energy into the brand in order to WAKE THEM to the new and revitalized TFO brand, leveraging all of TFO’s touch points with their audience including station ID, website, online boutique, on air promotions, stationary, outdoor, and in the creation of a new organization Club TFO to assist in the collection of donations to the station.

Retaining the brand heritage while modernizing its feel, a new logo took the shape of a flag to symbolize TFO’s strong emotional connection with French-speaking Ontario. In addition, new brand visuals embraced a bold colour scheme encompassing their corporate colour purple, as well as red, blue and lime green.

Following the core rebranding effort, we launched the fully integrated “Je-ne-sais-quoi télé” campaign to SHAKE THEM and officially reintroduce the organization Francophones and Francophiles alike. The integrated campaign elevated French-ness to heroic status, and positioned TFO as the best way for all Ontarians to inject more French into their lives. By combining uniquely cheeky, bilingual headlines with high-profile media placements, we took this upbeat French attitude directly to the Nation. All campaign elements drove to a microsite that offered unique facts about French culture in the same cheeky, bilingual tone. The microsite also informed visitors about TFO's programming.

Despite having tremendous success, one piece of the puzzle still remained and that was to truly immerse people in the TFO brand in a unique and memorable fashion. The MAKE THEM stage extended the campaign further to speak to specific TFO content and services. Launching real-world experiential activations, and engaging rich-media digital pieces, both in and outside the province, we used our uniquely ‘French’ campaign voice to tell a wider audience about what we do – and offer. One principal example of this was the activation supporting our vast library of cinematic and operatic content - the ‘Living Piano’ Opera activation - which achieved phenomenal viral success and re-enforced the brand’s ability to bring French culture to the masses.




Section IV — KEY EXECUTIONAL ELEMENTS
a) Media Used

Station ID, website, online boutique, on air promotions, stationery, outdoor, print, digital, TFO branded trucks, social and experiential



b) Creative Discussion

Retaining the brand heritage while modernizing its feel, a new logo took the shape of a flag to symbolize TFO’s strong emotional connection with French-speaking Ontario.

In addition, new brand and on-air visuals embraced a bold colour scheme encompassing their corporate colour purple, as well as red, blue and lime green.

Then, we reintroduced TFO to Ontarians, Canadians, and the global Francophonie; relying on our fresh, modern, and accessible new TFO brand identity for the fully integrated “Je-ne-sais-quoi télé” campaign.

We also launched real-world experiential activations, including the ‘Living Piano’ Opera activation - which achieved phenomenal viral success and reinforced the brand’s ability to bring French culture to the masses.



c) Media Discussion

Our use of channels, is best illustrated using our three-step communications plan.

WAKE THEM by introducing the revitalized brand and SHAKE THEM to see how the brand comes to life:

Through mass media vehicles, including their station ID, website, online boutique, on air promotions, stationary, outdoor, and in the creation of a new organization Club TFO, we were able to re-introduce and re-ignite the brand amongst the Ontario and Canadian population.

  • TFO Rebrand

Retaining the brand heritage while modernizing its feel, a new logo took the shape of a flag to symbolize TFO’s strong emotional connection with French-speaking Ontario. In addition, new brand visuals embraced a bold colour scheme encompassing their corporate colour purple, as well as red, blue and lime green.

  • Print

In order to create something that resonated with our francophone and francophile target, we ensured cheeky headlines that we bilingual, playful and recognizable. Bright colours acted as a backdrop for the copy in order to significant stand out and immediately grab readers' attention. The goal was to create intrigue in the newly reinvigorated TFO brand and stand out in a memorable fashion. 

  • OOH

To complement the activity in print, high profile media placements were secured across Canada. From TSA's, Billboards, Indoor signage and even a fully branded TFO truck, TFO aimed to be everywhere their target was. They leveraged the same cheeky, bilingual headlines and bright coloured backgrounds in order to reach Canadians in a striking fashion.

  • Digital

In the online space, digital banners, video and social media were leveraged to keep spreading the same cheeky and bilingual messaging across various platforms. In addition, all content drove to a TFO microsite featuring the newly invigorated brand possessing original TFO content.

  • Experiential

In order to truly MAKE THEM intrigued to know about TFO offerings and solidify the brands place in people’s minds, TFO felt they needed to create immersive opportunities for people to really experience the brand. In order to do so, we launched real-world experiential activations, and engaging rich-media digital pieces, both in and outside the province, we used our uniquely ‘French’ campaign voice to tell a wider audience about what we do – and offer. One principal example of this was the activation supporting our vast library of cinematic and operatic content - the ‘Living Piano’ Opera activation - which achieved phenomenal viral success and re-enforced the brand’s ability to bring French culture to the masses.

The Living Piano activation amassed over 30 million media impressions with zero media spend.



Section V — BUSINESS RESULTS
a) Sales/Share Results

The campaign exceeded expectations in all three objective areas and delivered remarkable results considering the realities of the very modest media budget:

 1.    BROADEN APPEAL TO ENGLISH ONTARIANS

After 3 months in market, the IPSOS ASI tracking study revealed that:

  • 9 out of 10 of those who had seen the campaign thought that it properly captured the ‘je-ne-sais-quoi Télé’ quality of French language.
  • 9 out of 10 respondents found it more youthful and dynamic than previous TFO content,
  • And 85% felt that it effectively captured French culture.
  • Only 3% of French speaking Canadians did not like the campaign at all.

This indicated that we had successfully broadened the network’s appeal, without alienating the current viewership.

 2.    DRIVE DIGITAL ENGAGEMENT

Increases in engagement in the digital space thus far has also exceeded expectations.

When TFO began its entry into social media in September 2012, it had a total of 1,033 subscribers on all social platforms combined (Facebook, Twitter and YouTube).

In September 2013, the public following TFO on these platforms combined to a community of 25,000 people – a 2,234% increase.

Direct attribution of these results to the campaign is easy to establish:

  • For example, in less than two weeks, the TFO YouTube clip documenting "Living Piano" has accumulated more than 518,000 views on our YouTube channel, in more than 90 countries, including the United States, France and Canada. That’s nearly as many views as the entire French-speaking population of Ontario.
  • And it has garnered in excess of 30 million earned media impressions globally; having been featured by outlets including CBC News, Fast Company, CBS, The Atlantic, and even NBC’s ‘Today Show’
  • MiniTFO, developed by the children division of TFO, has continued to push its limits during the year from 263% growth, up to 15 000 views a day on YouTube channel MiniTFO!

These two successes associated with other good shots of the Franco-Ontarian broadcaster cumulate a growth of viewings on our YouTube channels totalling 540%.

The tfo.org site visit rate for 2013 more than doubled since the fall of 2012, culminating to 1,235,000 page views, an increase of 130%. Time spent on-site has also jumped, with an average of 7.4 minutes in September 2013 compared to 3.32 minutes in September 2012.

3. INCREASE VIEWERSHIP

As a result of the campaign and rebranding efforts, viewership has increased steadily year over year. And the results are even more exceptional in the face of declining Canadian TV viewership numbers, across both terrestrial and cable networks (see below).

Our viewership target was a 20% increase. With the launch of our integrated ‘Je-ne-sais-quoi’ campaign TFO added 82% net new viewers, and increased to a BBM Audience Rating of 4 – comparable to Conventional and Specialty networks with naturally wider audiences (English & French) and greater marketing support. 



b) Consumption/ Usage Results


c) Other Pertinent Results


d) Return on Investment


Section VI — CAUSE & EFFECT BETWEEN ADVERTISING AND RESULTS
a) General Discussion

RETURN ON MARKETING INVESTMENT

As a publicly funded corporation, TFO’s operating revenues are provided by the Government of Ontario. It does not sell advertising space or content as for-profit broadcasters, or even other public broadcasters, such as the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) or the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) do. Returns on marketing investment, are largely measured as above – in the reception of its content, as well as changes in viewing behaviour, and attitudes towards the brand.

But what if TFO were a private broadcaster? Would our efforts have driven business results that could be quantified in monetary terms. To answer this question, we decided to model out that hypothetical scenario – to see what the impact of their phenomenal growth in viewership and Online engagement would be. We established certain parameters for our test:

We Set A Limited Market Area – setting TFO’s provincial home of Ontario as the advertising sales area.

We Established A Baseline Offering Value – which we set as the Average Cost-Per-Rating-Point – the average rate for a 30s advertising block sold by broadcasters – at ~C$1200

We Assumed Perfect Market Conditions – assuming TFO would be able to sell 100% of its possible advertising inventory

We Focused Solely on Television – as given the multiple variables involved in Online sales, and to keep the hypothetical model clean, while an important content platform for TFO, we left Online out of our equation. 

Revenue growth in our model from campaign start through the last measured period of Winter 2013 comes in in-excess of C$77 million dollars (C$74.66 million after accounting for communications investment over the measured period) - a whopping 31.29% increase in revenue.

And as this phenomenal result was initiated from an initial investment of C$3.4 million, the dollar rate of return nets out to C$21.90 for every C$1 invested.



b) Excluding Other Factors
Spending Levels:

While TFO used its $500,000 yearly media budget effectively and efficiently, considering the level of spend amongst top Canadian broadcasters, spending levels were not high enough to ‘buy the business’.



Pricing:

Not applicable.



Distribution Changes:

As a public broadcaster, TFO is available to everyone in the province with a television antenna or basic cable. This did not change during the campaign.



Unusual Promotional Activity:

Not applicable.



Other Potential Causes:

We believe the effects of this campaign are 100% attributable to the ‘Je-ne-sais-quoi Télé’ campaign. No other factors contributed to the success of the campaign.

  • TFO ran no other campaigns over the course of this initiative, and made no significant changes to its programming offering.
  • There were no significant new TFO programming changes or launches over the course of the ‘Je-ne-sais-quoi Télé campaign.
  • There were no departures of competing French-language competitors, i.e. there were no significant competitors who dropped out of the market, which would have provided a ready audience that could have increased TFO viewing.

The results showcased above are 100% attributable to this campaign, and show how the insights gathered from research enabled us to reenergize the TFO brand, and successfully broaden its appeal and viewership.