Four for Four: AVC Takes Gold at the 2020 Summit International Awards (SIA)

Four for Four: AVC Takes Gold at the 2020 Summit International Awards (SIA)

AVC bags a winner in all four categories entered at the 2020 Summit International Creative Awards (SIA). The team took home 1 Gold for the new AVC logo and 3 Silvers for creative work in TV commercials, website and original print creative.

The Summit Creative Award recognizes and celebrates the creative achievements of small and medium sized advertising agencies worldwide with annual billings under $30 million. They have established themselves as an arbiter of creative excellence by providing validation of award-winning work over the past 26-years and functions as a respected, international, industry-wide critique.

This year’s panel of judges included communication experts across disciplines. They are former Summit winners, designers, agency owners, authors, scholars, and industry experts from across the world. Using a blind judging process to assess entries between others in their category, they use their vast experience and knowledge to identify the best of the best, season after season.

Congratulations to our Creative Art Director Hassan Iqbal, Business Director Shaharyar Irfan and the entire AV Communications Inc. and Arbor Memorial Inc. Team!


ETHNIHUB™ Connects Marketers with Real-time Multicultural Insights.

ETHNIHUB™ Connects Marketers with Real-time Multicultural Insights.

AVC launches proprietary reward-based platform
generating consumer insights from diverse Canadian audiences.

By 2031, 47% of visible minorities in Canada will be children of immigrants. 350,000 new immigrants enter Canada each year, along with 400,000 international students. It’s no wonder the multicultural population in Canada is skyrocketing. How can brands tap into this large, fast-growing, and diverse consumer market?

 Insights, Insights and More Customer Insights

“Everything starts with the customer” explains Joycelyn David, Owner & CEO of AVC. With ETHNIHUB™ we aim to connect brands to diverse audiences and help answer their most critical marketing questions.”

Since our beta launch in Q4 2019, ETHNIHUB has generated insights from questions and topics such as: What kind of tea do South Asian buyers prefer? What do Filipino families look for in a financial provider? What luxury brands do Mainland Chinese immigrants prefer? What would Halal consumers want to see on Canadian QSR menus?

Today, the questions being asked by brands in Canada, on an increasing basis, represent a massive paradigm shift towards diversity in business strategy and marketing campaigns.

Paradigm Shifts and Speed to Insight

“We’ve definitely seen a shift with Canadian brands wanting to engage with multicultural and diverse audiences” Joycelyn adds. “Knowledge is power. But not if it takes months to analyze and then act on. Helping our clients with speed-to-insight was a critical piece of our development and design.”

Developed inhouse during the “down-time” of the global pandemic, ETHNIHUB recently landed Joycelyn and AVC a spot in Microsoft’s Women in Cloud Accelerator. Joycelyn credits the development team Abhinav Sood, Hassan Iqbal and Shaharyar Irfan who worked on all aspects of the UX, front end design and product design.

Respondents can sign up for free at www.ethnihub.ca.

Agencies or brands interested in a demo can contact @Shaharyar Irfan or @Gideon Lin for more information.


Woman in Cloud: AVC CEO Joycelyn David Joins 4.0 Cohort of Microsoft Accelerator

Woman in Cloud: AVC CEO Joycelyn David Joins 4.0 Cohort of Microsoft Accelerator

Within just over a year of acquiring Toronto based multicultural marketing agency AV Communications (AVC), CEO Joycelyn David is set to take it up a notch. A trailblazer in Canada’s multicultural marketing industry, she spearheaded the development of ETHNIHUB™ which landed her a coveted spot in the Microsoft backed Women in Cloud Accelerator.

Women in Cloud (WiC) has become a leading community and resource for women innovators all over the world and has been able to scale globally to 9 countries. Having graduated over 22 women-led companies, 25 enterprise-ready solutions, $50M in opportunities created, and 20+ jobs created and bagging major media coverage for Women in Cloud on Microsoft, GeekWire, TechNative, Times of India, CIO Dive, Small Business Trends, and more.

WiC recognizes the power and importance of marketing technology in today’s marketing ecosystem. With the massive shift this year in media consumption and the way many businesses and industries operate, we’re certainly looking forward to watching the 4.0 cohort of WiC unfold in a purely digital landscape and what the future holds for women entrepreneurs.


Press Release #HealthNotHate Survey Shows Alarming Levels of Anti-Asian Prejudice Due to COVID-19 Pandemic in Canada

Press Release #HealthNotHate Survey Shows Alarming Levels of Anti-Asian Prejudice Due to COVID-19 Pandemic in Canada.

#HealthNotHate Survey Shows Alarming Levels of Anti-Asian Prejudice Due to COVID-19 Pandemic in Canada.

Leaders from Canada’s multicultural marketing and film/television communities rallied together to launch a #HealthNotHate campaign and nationwide survey to better understand the spate of rising anti-Asian incidents. The survey was conducted in May 2020 and sampled 1250 Canadians from all backgrounds, including 250 Chinese Canadians.

Racist Incidents Experienced by Chinese Canadians
The survey showed that one in five Chinese Canadians have experienced some kind of racist incident as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. 19% of those who identify as Chinese Canadian surveyed said that they had “personally experienced racism during the COVID-19 pandemic.” Many of the survey respondents who experienced racism shared stories of being targeted with insults or questioned by passers-by and even store staff while shopping. Others were targeted by fellow passengers while using public transit. Often wearing a mask would trigger the insults.

Prejudiced Attitudes Among the Canadian Population
The survey also found a significant minority of the Canadian population hold prejudiced views of Asian Canadians as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. For example, 14% of Canadians agree with the statement “Chinese Canadians are more likely to carry the COVID-19 virus than other people in Canada” and 14% agree that “Eating in Chinese restaurants in Canada is less safe than eating in other types of restaurants due to COVID-19.”Almost one in four (23%) of Canadians agreed with one of the statements that were used in the survey to identify prejudiced statements.

“That level of agreement with prejudiced statements is a concern and those views will no doubt potentially contribute to racist attitudes and even actions,” said Sonny Wong who started the #HealthNotHate campaign. “Most alarming to me is how prevalent these attitudes are among younger Canadians” said Robin Brown from the research company, Dig Insights who designed the survey. The survey showed that agreement with prejudiced attitudes was even higher among Canadians aged 18 to 34. A third (32%) of those aged 18 to 34 agreed with at least one of the prejudiced statements.

About the Study

These are the results of a survey conducted May 13th to May 18th, 2020 using Logit’s consumer research panel LOOP among a sample of n=1,000 Canadian adults designed to be representative of the Canadian population in terms of age and province. The precision of these survey results can be calculated using a credibility interval with a poll of 1,000 accurate to +/- 3.5 percentage points. An additional n=250 online interviews were conducted specifically among those who self-identified as Chinese Canadian recruited from Ethnic Voice Accord and AV Communications’ Ethnihub™.


Canadian Communications Leaders And Community Come Together To Combat Racism Amid COVID-19

Canadian Communications Leaders And Community Come Together To Combat Racism Amid COVID-19

A grassroots group of concerned citizens and professionals from the marketing and film/television communities in Toronto and Vancouver have rallied together to produce an Anti-Racism Campaign — #HealthNotHate. The objective is to combat the misconceptions about the COVID-19 virus and counter a spate of anti-Asian incidents, along with many unreported cases, that have taken place across Canada and North America amidst the global pandemic when a new strain of the virus is misconstrued to trigger the time immemorial problem of discrimination.

#HealthNotHate aims to redirect this discourse with the view that health is the national imperative, where diversity contributes to a functional, inclusive and prosperous society.

“While COVID-19 is new, racism is not,” says Sonny Wong, one of the founders of the initiative. “At this moment, the whole world is focusing on saving the lives of its people and heightening measures to defense against the pandemic which has tested public confidence in our medical care system and our economy like never before. But it is equally important that we should not turn a blind eye, nor a deaf ear to ungrounded racial discrimination that is inflicting more devastating wounds to our society.”

Produced within 4 weeks, and entirely by voluntary and donated efforts, #HealthNotHate has attracted seasoned marketing experts and a who’s who of the film and television community. Talents for the campaign include luminaries such as Russell Wong, Ludi Lin, Osric Chau, Louis Ferreira, Tzi Ma, and others, all supported by ACTRA/UBCP.


Summit Creative Award

AVC takes GOLD at the 2019 Summit International Creative Awards

AVC takes GOLD at the 2019 Summit International Creative Awards

Out of more than 4,500 submissions from 27 countries, AVC won GOLD in the 2019 Summit Creative Award competition for its creative work for Arbor Memorial.

Arbor Memorial
SCA Summit Creative Award

The Summit Creative Award recognizes and celebrates the creative achievements of small and medium sized advertising agencies worldwide with annual billings under $30 million. Celebrating its 25th year, the Summit Creative Award has firmly established itself as the premier arbiter of creative excellence for firms of this size and has become a coveted honor.

This year’s panel of esteemed international judges included professionals representing the following countries: Australia, Brazil, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Germany, Kazakhstan, Sweden, Ukraine, United Kingdom, and the United States.

Congratulations to our Art Director Zeno Lam and the entire AV Communications Inc., and Arbor Memorial Inc. team!


Canada welcomed more than 400,000 new international students in 2019

Canada welcomed more than 400,000 new international students in 2019

India remains the leading international student source country by a wide margin. In 2019, nearly 140,000 study permits were issued to Indian nationals, representing 35 per cent of all study permits issued.

Chinese nationals received 85,000 study permits or 21 per cent of all those issued.

South Korea was a distant third at 17,000 study permit or 4 per cent of the total.

Rounding out the top ten were France, Vietnam, Brazil, Iran, Nigeria, the United States, and Japan.

Canada now has the fourth-largest international student population in the world behind the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia.


AVC survey reveals media habits of ethnic Canadians

AVC survey reveals media habits of ethnic Canadians

34% of multicultural Canadians prefer to receive in-language communication when dealing with brands. Our recent insights study of “Media Habits of Ethnic Canada” is available for free. Contact us today.


H&M Canada

Congrats to our amazing client H&M for their first-ever collection with designer Angel Chen.

Congrats to our amazing client H&M for their first-ever collection with designer Angel Chen.

H&M announced its next designer capsule collection, with Angel Chen, due out this September 2019. Chen is the first Chinese designer to have collaborated on a designer capsule with the fast-fashion giant, according to an announcement by WWD.

H&M Canada

“When I was designing the capsule, my priority was to reflect Chinese culture and my brand identity in a meaningful way, sell through became secondary,” Chen shared in a statement to WWD. “I chose some iconic looks from my archive, and gave it an update in colorway, material and details. For example, we used 100 percent recycled nylon mesh fabric to construct my bodysuit, and that came out of a discussion I had with H&M on how to integrate sustainability into my brand.” Per the announcement, the designs are “based on the spirit of Chinese martial arts,” featuring “elements such as pine tree, bamboo, dragon, and crane.” The collection will range from about $9 to $217.


Joycelyn David

Press Release – Change in Ownership at AV Communications

New chapter in AVC History

TORONTO, June 27, 2019 — AVcommunications, one of Canada’s leading multicultural advertising and marketing agencies, announces a change in ownership from co-founders of the firm, Anna Maramba and Marvi Yap, to Joycelyn David. 
 
Ms. David will oversee agency operations and the strategic direction of the firm. She will be assisted by members of the core management team, Shaharyar Irfan, Business Director of AVcommunications and Managing Director of its subsidiary Digital Avenue East (DAVE), and Zeno Lam, Creative Director of AVcommunications and DAVE. Mr. Irfan and Mr. Lam have been with the agency for several years.
 
“Steering AVcommunications into the agency that it has become today is the realisation of a vision,” said Ms. Maramba and Ms. Yap in a joint statement. “As we move on to pursue other interests and opportunities, we are certain that AVcommunications, under the leadership of Joycelyn, will continue to build upon the values the agency was founded on: the steadfast commitment to client and employee success, and the earnest desire to serve multicultural communities. We thank our clients, employees, and partners for the privilege of working with them. It has been a remarkable and exceptional sixteen years.”

On behalf of the agency, Ms. David and Mr. Irfan issued this statement:
 
“AVcommunications was born from humble roots and a big vision. Over the years, Anna and Marvi have shown that with sheer hard work, dedication, and commitment, anything can be achieved.

Through their leadership, AVcommunications has become the award-winning agency it is today, garnering recognition from CASSIES, Shorty for Social Good Awards, Marketing Awards and NAMIC Excellence in Multicultural Marketing Awards. The agency also has grown, with the launch of AVxperiential and AVinsights, along with the Tencent partnership and Digital Avenue East formation. 

With each milestone, Anna and Marvi trained and mentored many employees along the way. They provided many immigrants with first-time Canadian experience, allowing them to jump-start their careers. Their desire to run a successful agency while simultaneously serving the community is now deeply ingrained in the company’s culture.

As we usher in a new chapter in the firm’s history, we will continue to focus on the agency’s commitment to creative excellence and client success. We are grateful for — and humbled by — the trust and confidence Anna and Marvi have in us. The two advertising gurus leave a lasting legacy that is far-reaching. We wish them the very best.”
 
About AVcommunications

AVcommunications is one of Canada’s leading multicultural advertising and marketing agencies. As a full-service agency with multiculturalism embedded in its core, we are a talented team of designers and strategists who seek to build emotional connections between mainstream brands and the ethnic customer. We are proud to serve clients such as Western Union, BMO, Randstad, World Vision, Tim Hortons, Arbor Memorial, WINNERS, ROM, H&M, Estee Lauder, MAC, CLINIQUE, CUSO and Cineplex.