Cossette Media wins expanded AOR mandate with Ottawa

Cossette Media has won an expanded media buying mandate with the Government of Canada.

The agency had been handling media planning and buying, but has expanded its purview following a review. Cossette’s additional roles include ad serving and trafficking, ad verification and reporting. Cossette Media  has worked with Public Services and Procurement Canada going back to 2004.

“In addition to our previous experience, we demonstrated Cossette Media’s advanced capabilities throughout the rigorous RFP process—and we couldn’t be happier with the outcome,” said Axel Dumont, SVP and general manager of Cossette Media Quebec and East in a release.

According to the most recent annual report on advertising activities (released in January) the Federal Government spent about $39.2 million on advertising in 2017-18, well down from the recent high-water mark of $136 million in 2009-10. Of that total spend in 2017-18, about $27.8 million was on media.

The expanded role for Cossette comes as Ottawa continues to significantly increase its spending in digital media and in areas requiring specialty technology and talent to ensure optimal performance.

Cossette said it will be working with “a mix of internal ad technology and third party partners” to manage the added responsibilities for the government.

Just 27% of the government’s ad spend was in digital (46% in TV) in 2013-14, but that number had risen to 65%, or about $18.2 million (16% in TV), by 2017-18.

Further, in 2013-2014 the government was spending just 10% of its digital budget in social media, and 79% in display. Social has increased to 43% of total digital spend in the latest report and display was down to 39%.

And while Ottawa’s spending in real-time bidding was once so small as not to be measured, in had risen to about 6% of the total digital spend by 2017-18. While that still only represents about $1 million in spending, the increase suggests the emergence of a new channel for the government.

The new contract for Cossette Media is for three years, with two yearly options.

Photo by James Beheshti on Unsplash


David Brown