Cundari wins Chartwell Retirement Residences assignment

Cundari has been named agency of record for Chartwell Retirement Residences following a three-month competitive review. The assignment will be handled by both the agency’s Toronto and Montreal offices, with a national bilingual campaign expected later this year.

Sharon Henderson, vice-president of marketing and communications for Chartwell, said that Cundari was selected on the basis of its team, its reputation and body of work, as well as chair/CEO Aldo Cundari‘s strategic vision and “personal commitment” to the agency bearing his name.

“Our organizations are really well-matched,” said Cundari in an interview with The Message. “Whenever you get a new client, it’s always great to have great synergy between the two organizations.”

Cundari will be charged with creating a “compelling” brand strategy for Chartwell, along with creative development and execution, media planning and buying, and digital optimization.

Chartwell is the largest operator in the Canadian senior living sector, with more than 200 retirement facilities across four provinces: British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario and Quebec.

The company said it expects to see a “significant increase” in marketing activity in the coming years, as it acquires and builds new properties to meet the requirements of Canada’s growing senior population.

According to StatsCan, the country’s senior population will increase rapidly until 2031, when the tailing edge of Baby Boomers will reach 65 years old. It predicts that seniors will represent between 23-25% of the total population—an estimated 9.9 to 10.9 million people—by then.

“Demographics are on our side,” said Henderson in a release. “Demand will increase.”

Aldo Cundari has direct knowledge of the senior living space, sitting on the board of directors for the Toronto long-term care facility Villa Columbo for 10 years. “I have a real affinity for the work they do and the facilities they provide,” he said.

Cundari said that the key challenge is developing a creative strategy capable of helping Chartwell’s prospective customers see past persistent myths about retirement living. It’s approach will involve building profiles of specific target audiences through the use of data, honing in on behaviours and needs that arise during the customer journey.

The company’s primary target is typically adult children who are resistant to finding a home for their parent(s), meaning that seniors housing often isn’t on their radar. “It’s going to be our job to shine a light on all the good things the organization does, and all their facilities,” said Cundari. “Messaging and targeting are very important in this category.”

Cundari is currently hiring a new creative team and supplementing other departments within the agency to handle both the Chartwell account and other new business assignments. “It basically touches every aspect of our agency,” said Cundari of the Chartwell assignment. The agency currently employs close to 65 people.




Chris Powell