We post thoughtful commentary on the latest in advertising, design, and technology to covering notable movement on political and social issues in the world around us. Curious about how we can help your organization communicate more deeply? Reach out!

Anmiao Wu

Former journalists are better PR pros: here’s why

Ever wonder why some PR pros seem to always have a sharp sixth sense for what makes headlines? The secret might be their experience as journalists.

Lauren Nunes

Five Lessons about Artificial Intelligence for Content Creation

I recently visited Toronto to attend DigiMarCon Canada, a digital marketing conference focused on new ideas in communications and advertising. This year, one topic stood out: artificial intelligence.

Lauren Nunes

Level up your organic communications strategy with email

Looking for ways to elevate your organic communications strategy? Email marketing could be your missing piece.

Emily Wagar

Navigating social media: Five tips for advocacy and awareness

Social media has evolved beyond a space for sharing personal updates; these days it is also a dynamic tool for advocacy and awareness.

Branding, branding, branding: is it the Hogue Commission or Inquiry?

For people working in marketing, advertising, advocacy, public relations, government relations, or even in the news business, a common question around the table (or Zoom call or WhatsApp group) is often: what do we call this thing?

Matthew Gangnier

Beware of the latest Facebook scam: Protecting your business page

In today's digital age, online scams are becoming increasingly sophisticated, and social media platforms are no exception.

Perry Tsergas
Annette Goerner

Peter Mansbridge joins spark*advocacy as Senior Counsel

Veteran Canadian journalist Peter Mansbridge, has joined spark*advocacy as Senior Counsel.

Matthew Gangnier
Emily Wagar

Is the era of social media advertising coming to an end?

Over the past two decades, social media has evolved from a platform for virtual communication and connection to an essential marketing tool. Now, with both X (formerly Twitter) and Meta proposing ad-free subscription services, the social media landscape may shift yet again.

Alex Kohut

We’re all in this together

Producing COVID public health advertising for the Government of Canada proved to me that research is an indispensable part of any communications campaign. Now I’m joining spark*advocacy to help make it the most research-driven communications and marketing firm in the country.

Annette Goerner

Finding my spark* again

My role comes at a pivotal time in public relations, where the way in which people consume news or stories is changing at lightning speed.

Emily Wagar

The power of building your personal brand

Building a personal brand is a chance for you to communicate what drives you, the experiences you’ve had, and the value you create.

Lauren Nunes

Meta’s Threads: Our First Thoughts

Meta’s Twitter-competitor “Threads” was launched with a bang on Wednesday night, with over 30 million people creating accounts within the first 24 hours. This overwhelming start was marked by both excitement and uncertainty of what this could mean for the world of social media.

Google's Privacy Sandbox: A major shift in online advertising

Starting in 2024, Google is eliminating third-party cookies, replacing them with its new Privacy Sandbox. What does this change mean for web users and advertisers though?

Elisabeth Guthrie

Advertising in a new market – what have we learned from the last year of sports betting in Ontario?

This April marked one year since Ontario’s Bill C-218 took effect, removing a federal ban on sports betting and opening the doors to an expanded market for bettors and operators in the province.

Matthew Gangnier

Goodbye data: It's not you, it's Google Analytics 4

Google Analytics will stop collecting all data for websites that have not migrated over to its latest version: Google Analytics 4 (GA4).

Lauren Nunes

Can an AI model write like a human? We asked ChatGPT.

Using AI programs to write content is an enticing option - but do these programs live up to human expectations of what content should look and sound like?

Elisabeth Guthrie

Where AI meets entertainment: the NHL’s digitally enhanced boards

The National Hockey League made headlines this fall with the introduction of a brand-new system of ‘digitally-enhanced dasher boards,’ which uses AI-supported technology to replace physical in-arena advertising with virtual ones – in real time.

Lauren Nunes

Problem? Short attention spans. Solution? Short content.

Video content accounts for over 80% of global online traffic. With decreasing attention spans and more content available than ever, short form video content is taking over the Internet.

Lauren Nunes
Matthew Gangnier

Get SERP-savvy: Navigating the world of paid and organic search

The SERP is the result of bots crawling every page of the web, collecting information from each page, and putting them into an index. You can think of this index like a giant library.

Elie Khalil

Lights, camera, selfie! Two easy steps to make your selfie video better for production

In this blog, we’ll walk you through two easy ways to take your videos to the next level. All you need are two simple tools: a phone or a computer with a webcam and a light source.

Alexa McGannon

Advertising and advocacy on TikTok

The most popular app downloaded globally in 2020 and 2021, TikTok is an outstanding platform to reach consumers both through digital advertising and organic posting. With one billion active monthly users, organizations can use the platform’s unique algorithm to their advantage, potentially attracting an audience of millions.

Insights from the IABC 2022 World Conference

The IABC World Conference brings together communications professionals from across the world to meet peers, learn from experts, and share information on the latest and greatest communication tools and trends.

Emily Wagar

Don't forget to listen: why social listening should be a key part of your social media strategy

From guiding content strategy to gaining industry insights, social listening is an essential tool to ensure your organization is communicating effectively on social media.

Lauren Nunes

How to maximize your organic results on Facebook

The Facebook algorithm can be a bit of a mystery. We're here to help you decode the platform and test out new strategies to maximize your results.

Marcus Cuomo

The importance of making a good first impression with political advertising

Political advertisements are critical to generate, modify, or reinforce political attitudes of voters by triggering emotional responses, leading to shifts in an individuals’ feelings and moods.

Christine Burke

You can’t forget the social in social media

One of the many lessons we’ve learned over the past year and a half is just how reliant we are on the digital world. When COVID-19 kept us at home, the only way we could communicate with one another was through calls, emails, and social media – pushing us further into the digital norm.

Is O'Toole's brand strong enough to win the horse race?

Amid a rising 4th wave of COVID-19, the Liberals are again asking Canadian voters to trust the Trudeau brand. In what amounts to a referendum on his pandemic leadership, the election is essentially a two-horse race with respect to who can form government: Trudeau's Liberals and O'Toole's Conservatives.

Communicating during COVID: Language

We have all heard and used terms like “unprecedented” and “uncertain” and they reflected the situation, but we have moved beyond the initial response and so should your communications.

Communicating during COVID: Misinformation

Social media has created an easier way for conspiracy theories and misinformation to spread among the abundance of COVID-19 information out there these days. How you navigate that and what it means for your communications is the challenge.

Communicating during COVID: Mood shift

A decline in interest around COVID-19 from the public, is showing a shift in mood not a lack of care.

Communicating during COVID: Ensure accuracy

Communicating during COVID: Provide useful content

Communicating during COVID: Acknowledge the moment

Communicating during COVID: Audit communications

#ELXN43 advertising rules

Ontario's new election advertising rules

Who won the 2018 Super Bowl

The spark* team has a little fun picking, reviewing, and analyzing our favourite Super Bowl ads.

Facebook's New Year's resolution