CMA and nabs Canada announce partnership

Nabs Canada is partnering with the Canadian Marketing Association (CMA) to increase awareness and support for the charity organization, which provides services for marketing communications professionals facing personal, career and family challenges.

Executive director Jay Bertram describes the CMA partnership as a “breakthrough moment” for nabs, which has been providing short-term financial assistance—along with professional workshops, private counselling and assistance programs—to marketing and communications professionals for more than 35 years.

The organization, which has offices in Toronto and Surrey, B.C., has supported more than 3,000 individuals and their families in the past year.

The partnership is part of an overarching goal to transform nabs from an event-driven charity to a marketing-driven charity working with associations to deliver its message and more effectively target potential users of its services.

Bertram said that nabs’ approximately 18-month relationship with the Advertising Club of Toronto convinced him to explore additional partnership opportunities with industry associations. “There’s a lot of good that can come out of this,” he said. “It’s a more efficient route to use associations to get out our message.”

Today’s announcement is the culmination of a process that began just prior to the holidays, said Bertram, who worked closely with former nabs board chair—and current CMA board chair—Aldo Cundari to broker the agreement.

The partnership also builds on nabs’ strategy of developing its presence across various industry sectors, said Bertram. “The CMA is very unique in that it has members from the client, agency and production side; they are a perfect avenue to get out message out.”

The CMA has more than 400 company members across the client, agency and marketing services sectors. As part of the partnership, the industry association is offering a spot in its Chartered Marketer program—a two-year designation program valued at $8,000—to an individual selected by nabs.

Sara Clodman, vice-president of public affairs and thought leadership for the CMA, said the partnership will help nabs raise its profile through speaking and fundraising at various events.

According to a release, Nabs will also receive an “expanded presence” at the annual CMA Awards, while the two will work with schools to ensure people entering the industry are aware of the services they provide.

“We’ve always been supportive of nabs and they’ve always thought highly of the CMA, so we’re just formalizing what already existed,” said Clodman of the partnership.

The partnership is a one-year agreement (which is in line with the organization’s other partner agreements) although there is generally an expectation that they will be renewed.

Chris Powell