2015 Finalist

Ontario Entrepreneur Week (OEW) 2014

Metroland Media Group Ltd.

Hamilton, Canada

Category Events to Build a News Brand

Media associated with this campaign

Overview of this campaign

Metroland Media Group Ltd. is committed to supporting small to medium size local businesses in the communities serviced by its publications. Ontario Entrepreneur Week was created by Metroland to encourage and promote entrepreneurism in Ontario through engaging and educational events featuring relevant dynamic speakers and networking opportunities. The events were intended to create a sense of community among local entrepreneurs and foster an open dialogue between experienced and up-and-coming entrepreneurs. It also provided local businesses an opportunity to be affiliated with and attend a premiere event new to the communities.

Results for this campaign

A series of nine events were held across Ontario in key Metroland markets including Hamilton, Burlington, Kitchener, London, Ottawa, Markham/Richmond Hill, Barrie, Oshawa and MIssissauga during the first two weeks of June 2014. We used in-paper ads, social media, and online ads to communicate the events and encourage ticket sales.

We managed to secure Arlene Dickinson, TV host of the popular national show Dragon’s Den, as the guest speaker. A successful entrepreneur herself, with a rags-to-riches story, her inspirational talk attracted approximately 2340 attendees in total for the nine markets. These events provided sponsorship, advertising and show booth display opportunities for local businesses, corporations, service providers, and post-secondary educational institutions.

In total, we sold 22 sponsorships consisting of existing newspaper advertisers and also generated sales to new clients. These events offered the various Metroland marketing and advertising representatives the opportunity to network with local businesses in an informal atmosphere and develop relationships for future growth.

Arlene’s books were also made available for sale in selected markets and they sold out quickly! Feedback from attendees was very positive: “She is hands down the best speaker I have heard in 30 years of corporate presentations”, “Excellent networking and speakers”, “A big WOW for a great event”.

The total revenue for the speaker series was approximately $245,500, a huge success considering it was a new profit source. We are definitely continuing with OEW again in 2015 and are in the planning stages now trying to secure another dynamic and inspiring speaker


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