There is a ring of familiarity attached to the players we crowned as Best of 2013; certainly none of the three has exactly been suffering from a lack of profile. But our job is to single out the best, not rotate the hardware around equally, and after all the fierce debating on our editorial team we arrived united at three clear winners. If anything, their recent successes actually raised the bar on taking their crowns, but they all cleared it. Congratulations!
Here are the three companies named at last night’s Best of 2013 reception:
• Sid Lee is not just the pride of Quebec, it’s one of Canada’s valuable exports. It’s also got a winning streak going that looks like the Habs’ run back in the ’70s. We’ve crowned it Agency of the Year four of the past five years. What’s additionally compelling about Sid Lee’s success in 2013 is that it came on the heels of a serious stumble when it lost a major Dell account. So when it secured a global vodka bottle-shaped client footprint in Absolut and scooped up Burger King—all while diversifying its offerings and brand through collaborations with part-owner Cirque du Soleil—well, let’s just say it was a very good year.
[Agency of the Year: Sid Lee]
• Rogers Media graced the cover of Marketing a few years ago for putting the pieces together to take a run at TSN in sports. We didn’t expect it to be back here so soon, but grabbing the biggest deal in the history of Canadian broadcasting changed that. The NHL deal is huge and how it came together speaks volumes for the value of multiple platforms in today’s media landscape. After the league raised the faint possibility of an ‘everything’ rights package, Rogers Media execs found a way to open that door, then leverage their multiplatform options to rewrite the balance of power in sports broadcasting.
[Media Player of the Year: Rogers Media]
• Duncan Fulton is one of the higher profile marketing names in the country and he snagged a Stevie in the fall as marketer of the year in the International Business Awards for his work on brands under the Canadian Tire umbrella. We’ve been watching, too. Under CEO Stephen Wetmore’s strategic direction, Fulton has helped establish the group’s sports retailer as a digital powerhouse, brought a new focus to Mark’s and nailed a series of major strategic partnerships and sponsorship deals that aligns the nation’s storied retailer effectively with both amateur and professional sport. (Also, I’d invite you to check out Fulton and other top Canadian marketers online on MarketingTV, in our Marketing for Change video interview series.)
[Marketer of the Year: Canadian Tire]