Distributel picks doug&partners

Independent Canadian telecommunications provider Distributel has picked doug&partners as its new agency of record for strategy, branding, creative development and production.

This is the first time the agency will be working in the telecom sector, but Shaun Randall, Distributel’s director of marketing and communications, said they chose doug&partners because the agency has experienced leaders in key disciplines like creative, strategy, digital, CRM, lead generation and experiential.

He also said they were impressed with the agency’s recent work for clients including Reliance and Honda. “They approach marketing campaigns in a methodical, process-driven way,” he said. “Their focus on measurement of results was very aligned to our approach and felt very consistent with how we work and how we wanted to work with an agency.”

Randall also said they felt a good cultural fit in each of their meetings during the review process. “We really liked their energy and excitement to have an impact in the telecom space and felt that passion matched our teams passion to do the same,” he said.

“Distributel is a lean company where senior people are hands on with marketing… doug&partners identified the team that would be on our account and they were the senior people in the pitch meetings.

“The goal is to build greater awareness and affinity for the brand nationally,” he said.

“We’re well-positioned to help them advance their position in the Canadian telecom landscape, and very excited to be so strategically aligned with a company that has such tremendous opportunity,” said Caroline Kilgour, vice-president and managing director of doug&partners, about winning the business.

The agency takes the creative reins at an interesting time for the brand. Independent telecoms like Distributel and TekSavvy have been locked in a battle with Rogers, Bell and the rest of the big incumbents for a larger piece of the market. Last summer, the challengers scored a major victory when the CRTC ordered the big players to reduce their wholesale rates.

“In doing so, the CRTC opened the door for the industry to invest, innovate and offer enhanced services at fair prices,” said Distributel in a recent release promoting a survey on Canadian attitudes towards big telecom. (Unsurprisingly, the numbers showed Canadians want to pay less and feel powerless to do anything about our internet overlords.)

Six of Canada’s largest internet service providers challenged the CRTC ruling in court and won a temporary stay last fall. TekSavvy recently launched a campaign to get Canadians to put pressure on their MPs to uphold the original CRTC ruling.

“Canadians have clearly voiced their concern about the status quo created by the large telecommunications firms,” said Distributel CEO Matt Stein. “The limits they have deliberately placed on consumer choice, fairness, affordability and competition have led to unacceptable levels of dissatisfaction. And when 40% of their customers say they want to change companies but feel trapped by their current provider, that’s a clear sign that the status quo is not serving Canadians.”






David Brown