– Julie Malbogat
SOS was engaged to help raise awareness of Manulife Centre — a unique lifestyle retail and commercial destination at the corner of Bloor & Bay in Toronto. The centre offers both a multi-faceted retail space (55 Bloor), and, one of Toronto’s premier residential rental addresses (44 Charles). Our challenge was to create and promote an identity for Manulife Centre that generated excitement, interest and helped drive traffic.
Research & Strategy
Social Media Marketing
By conducting additional research, we were able to bring greater context and insights to the data provided by Manulife. We needed to understand the neighbourhood’s changing demographics, as well as shopping and real estate trends. We identified 5 distinct types of Manulife Centre visitor and from this built shopper archetypes which then informed the new positioning and tagline, and, anchored the subsequent creative.
– Sarah Robertson
From milk to silk became our motto once we fully appreciated everything Manulife Centre had to offer: a place to run errands on a Saturday afternoon (grocery shopping, shoe shine, dry cleaner, pharmacy), peruse boutique retailers, take in a movie, workout, and even savour fine dining. With such a dynamic offering it made sense to launch a brand with a tagline that said it all: Bloor & Better. Adopting this tagline makes it possible for us to tell the story of Manulife Centre in limitless ways: Pretty & Practical, Form & Function, Above & Beyond, etc.
– Shravan Sadhwani
Our next step was to bring our tagline to life as a compelling brand campaign across various mediums including web, social media, onsite advertising, hoarding and event promotions.
The basis of our design direction leveraged a bold font and bright palette that was consistent with our belief that Manulife Centre is a vibrant, energetic and exciting place where people love to be.
– Julie Malbogat
From the onset we knew that the two components that make up Manulife Centre — shopping and living — were a huge part of each other’s appeal so we wanted them to be represented together in a cohesive online experience. The art direction that manifested online did an excellent job of communicating the vibrancy of the centre, and, for the 44 Charles portion in particular, worked to counteract the negative public perception that these were residences more suited for an older demographic.
The site’s functionality was also a big aspect of the project and we took care to make the site more user-friendly and appealing to the intended audiences with updates like an interactive Directory for 55 Bloor and detailed floor plans, and amenity listings for 44 Charles. For both halves of the centre we also developed and executed an engaging blog that highlighted how consumers and renters could take advantage of the centre’s offerings to the fullest.Visit website
Window panels were developed to cover all vacant retail spaces and acted as a seamless, integrated expression of the Bloor & Better brand. The panels featured compelling black & white photography of busy, urban scenes coupled with bold “&” statements that expressed the breadth of the centre’s offerings.
Event activations like the “12 Days of Bloor & Better”, launched during the holiday season, were developed to drive engagement and better connect the centre’s retailers to their audiences. Key aspects of the event included a holiday lounge where the retailers could interact with shoppers and visitors. Throughout the 12 days, followers were engaged by regular social media postings and contest giveaways.