CBC shows that it’s for all Canadians

Who: CBC, with Juniper Park\TBWA for creative, strategy and design. CBC handled the production itself, with Rooster for post-production and Initiative for media.

What: “It’s a Canada thing,” a new brand platform for the public broadcaster that highlights its role as “Canada’s storyteller.” There is also an updated, more modern and colourful treatment of its iconic logo.

When & Where: The campaign launched last week, and there’s a lot of media supporting it: TV, digital, social, radio, digital OOH, and transit. ,

Why: CBC wants to position the brand as “bold, provocative and relevant” by reminding Canadians that its content reflects the entire country.

“We want to re-introduce ourselves to those who already know us, and introduce CBC to those who don’t yet have a relationship with us, including younger audiences and newcomers,” said Maya Kane, CBC’s executive director, marketing and communications. “The campaign shines a spotlight on the unique value CBC offers to people across the country, regardless of age, background or location.”

It comes as calls to cut government investment in the public broadcaster have grown louder under Conservative leader Pierre Poilievre, who has specifically targeted the broadcaster and its CEO Catherine Tait in recent weeks.

How: The campaign is anchored by a 60-second spot that showcases a wide range of CBC content—from acclaimed mini-series and popular comedies in scripted TV, to coverage of sports, arts, local and international news—with a voiceover explaining how CBC is more than what it may appear at first glance. “It is not just how a story is told,” it says. “It’s about whose story it is to tell.”

While highlighting popular hits like Schitt’s Creek, the emphasis is on how representative CBC content is. “It’s not how Canadian you are, it’s who you are in Canada,” says the voiceover. That is a key line for the campaign, and is also being featured in out-of-home executions. The spot closes with the tagline: “CBC: It’s a Canada thing.”

“The tagline positions the CBC brand in its own category, as its distinct role as Canada’s story-teller,” said Juniper Park\TBWA president David Toto.

The creative also uses the new design system and animation of the logo with bright colours, shapes and graphics from the famous “exploding pizza” logo, which turns 50 next year.

“The design work’s purpose is to bring life to the iconic CBC logo, by making it expand dynamically and through the new design system and bring a rich palette of colour to represent the richness of the entertainment programming of CBC,” said Toto.

And we quote: “CBC stands apart in its commitment to reflect diverse experiences and give everyone a voice, and we hope that with this campaign, all Canadians will see a glimpse of themselves.” —Maya Kane, CBC’s executive director, marketing and communications


David Brown