Frank talks positivity at Conversuasion

Catherine Frank is sick and tired of all the naysaying, and is ready to give the industry the shot in the arm she thinks it needs. The co-founder of Clean Sheet Communications will bring her chin-up message to Conversuasion, a storytelling event hosted by Ad Lounge and Boost Agents next Wednesday. Her session, “Ways to […]

Catherine Frank is sick and tired of all the naysaying, and is ready to give the industry the shot in the arm she thinks it needs.

The co-founder of Clean Sheet Communications will bring her chin-up message to Conversuasion, a storytelling event hosted by Ad Lounge and Boost Agents next Wednesday.

Her session, “Ways to Win that Stand the Test of Time – how even a recession can be a good thing,” will address the funk that Frank says has permeated the Canadian business environment since the 2008 recession. Her message: invest in innovation no matter the economic climate.

There’s talk of a possible downturn on the way, but you’re still seeing the effects of the last one.
This negativity and volatility in the market has just gone on far too long. It’s really starting to hold us back in my view. It’s tempting, in the corporate world, to play it safe, to say ‘let’s not do anything dramatic because we don’t know what the next quarter might be like.’ We’ve been doing that for so long, we’re holding back our own growth in Canada.

You’re saying the industry has been in a funk for four years?
We observed something very dramatic last summer. There were fears in the early part of the year of a ‘double dip’ recession. Then in June and July people were coming out of it. People were talking again about innovation and investing, new ideas for next year. But then August hit, and the combination of the Greek [debt] crisis and Standard & Poor downgrading the U.S. meant ‘kaboom!’ Everybody just went down into their rabbit holes. All the plans were clawed back. It was ‘wait and see’ all over again.

Is this an agency pessimism, or a client pessimism?
They’re equally guilty. It’s really more of a corporate problem.

Can you blame corporations for taking a safe course through rough waters?
There are an awful lot of companies on the TSX showing record profits year-on-year. They’re making money in Canada, they’re just not investing it. There are ways to win whether it’s a good time or a bad time. That’s what I’ll be sharing next week. I want to inspire people to look at the glass as half-full. Right now, everyone’s sitting around saying ‘someone else can fix it.’

Frank said her presentation will cover examples of organizations that made positive decisions during uncertain economic times that benefitted their brand.

She will be one of three storytellers at Conversuasion. Paul Rowan, co-founder and vice-president of design at Umbra, Jason Theodor, creative director at Blast Radius are also scheduled to address the crowd.

Tickets for the event are still available.

Advertising Articles

Kraft Singles plays mind games in online effort

Cheese brand introduces "A craving is a powerful thing" tagline

Sport Chek and Sid Lee part ways, Rethink steps in

Rethink Communications takes over retailer's "All Sweat is Equal" campaign

McDonald’s tricks consumers with ‘salad society’ pop-up

Fast food chain creates a fake restaurant brand to get consumers to try its salads

Mobile quickly becoming video-viewing platform of choice

Mobile video ads are a big opportunity as consumers flock to smartphones for viewing

Getting from 3% to 50%: Yes We Can (Column, pt 1 of 6)

Janet Kestin looks back on adland in the 1980s to see how little has changed

Why it’s a great time to be a marketer

Amid the challenges are great opportunities to connect with customers

Running on empty: How to deal with professional burnout

In the fast paced world of change, how do change agents prevent burnout?

Ads You Must See: Battle of the fast food chains

KFC resurrects Colonel Sanders, McDonald's messes with its brand

Quaker looks to spark Twitter conversations with new effort

PepsiCo brand uses social to encourage Canadians to do more of what matters