Bayer CropScience moves to MacLaren McCann Calgary

Bayer CropScience Canada has chosen MacLaren McCann Calgary as its agency of record, ending a 20-plus year relationship with cross-town agriculture specialist agency AdFarm.

Bayer CropScience Canada, maker of agricultural products such as herbicides and fungicides, has chosen MacLaren McCann Calgary as its agency of record, ending a 20-plus year relationship with cross-town agriculture specialist agency AdFarm.

The agriculture industry is known for long-term relationships between agency and client, but Derrick Rozdeba, manager, integrated communications for Bayer CropScience, said his company has grown and changed in 20 years, and while its prime demographic is mostly over 55, the company has to be ready for a new, younger generation of farmers.

When it sent out an RFP last January, it was “looking for experience in communications rather than agriculture. With MacLaren McCann, we saw a breadth and depth of expertise we didn’t have in areas like customer engagement, digital and French-language marketing.”

However, knowledge of agriculture and farmers will continue to be critical for any marketing strategy, added Rozdeba. “This is a unique demographic. They live and breathe their work every day. They talk about both their family life and their business life at the kitchen table every night, and our marketing strategy has to understand and appreciate that mindset.”

Ric Fedyna, MacLaren McCann’s senior vice-president, said his agency had hired two former AdFarm employees to bulk up its agricultural expertise. MacLaren McCann media entities M2 Universal and MRM have handled Bayer’s media planning and digital marketing for more than a year and “that has given us some [agricultural] experience,” added Fedyna.

Winning Bayer CropScience meant the agency had to significantly increase its staff, said Fedyna. By the end of May, he expects employees to increase to 40 from 30 pre-Bayer. Additional staff was also necessary to handle the fist-full of other accounts the agency has won in recent weeks, including Calgary’s SAIT Polytechnic, the Calgary Board of Education, the Alberta Government’s Emergency Alert program and stock photo company Fotolia.

MacLaren McCann’s first campaign for Bayer will come out this fall, said Rozdeba, and will likely make more use of digital, social media and other Web-based strategies. “Today we can’t just push the messages out to them. We need to use technology to have a dialogue and provide them with some useful information.” He added that the new campaign will also include the usual direct marketing and mass media advertising.

Advertising Articles

Ads You Must See: April 24, 2015

The German Stuttering Association has loading problems. March for the Homeless takes a trip to the hospital

DDB Canada boosts leadership in Toronto and Vancouver

Patty Jones, Michelle Kitchen and Melanie Johnston promoted

On the Move: New hires at Weber Shandwick, GMR, CBC

A weekly recap of who's headed where in Canadian marketing and communications

Career Boosters: The future of social media

Three industry execs on the future of social and how to stay relevant in the field

How the age of Big Data has led to a data scientist shortfall

Many businesses are struggling to find talent, even as more people enter the field

Know them and they will sign up (Case Study)

How the City of Markham connects with culturally diverse residents

Will you fight or flee, asks campaign from MS Society

Effort from Mackie Biernacki sheds light on a startling statistic

BMO emphasizes its human touch

Online video brings brand promise to life