Internet Advertising Bureau of Canada Taps McDonnell Haynes as AOR

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The Internet Advertising Bureau of Canada, a nonprofit that serves advertisers, agencies and publishers, has named McDonnell Haynes Advertising, Toronto, as its ad agency of record.

McDonnell will promote IAB Canada to marketers who have been exposed to a confusing array of associations, committees and marketing messages. The agency aims to make IAB Canada stand out by highlighting its relevance to marketers and advertisers.

"The mandate is to grow the association by 20 percent in new member acquisition," said Daintry Springer, executive director of IAB Canada, Toronto.

Springer said the goal is to educate the industry on the benefits of online advertising through association work.

IAB Canada has about 100 members, including Yahoo, AOL, Microsoft Corp., RBC Financial Group (formerly Royal Bank), Ford Motor Co. and Procter & Gamble Co.

Still, the organization needs more members. Dan Wiest, vice president of direct and interactive marketing at McDonnell, said creating awareness of IAB Canada's offerings is just one step in that direction.

"The second one is actually getting prospective [members] out of their offices to physically attend IAB functions," he said. "And the last part is converting some of the prospects into IAB members."

In a debut push, mailers to more than 700 companies in Canada have gone out. The intent is to draw attention to IAB Canada monthly meetings called Town Hall events.

Also, the mailer informs non-online advertisers that IAB Canada is available to deliver industry update presentations for free.

"Online advertising is expected to be the fastest-growing medium this year, according to some research IAB Canada just completed with traditional and online advertisers," Springer said.

Privately held, the 16-year-old McDonnell was named because of its experience in integrated communications and Internet design. The 30-person agency's clients include Agfa Canada, Werther's Original, Corel Corp., TD Canada Trust and The Ontario Secondary School Teachers' Federation.

"This is our first agency of record," Springer said. "They volunteered services and we accepted."

But McDonnell has its work cut out.

"Marketing executives, our core target member, are swamped with all sorts of information daily, [and] associations make lots of noise," Springer said. "Our biggest challenge is getting heard above the other clutter that marketing executives have to sort through every day."

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