Back-to-School is the Most Wonderful Time of the Year for Staples Canada

For Staples Canada, when the school bell rings, the cash register sings! The office product supplier launched its “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year” integrated marketing campaign to ensure that the retailer was top of mind for parents and kids tackling back-to-school shopping.

To fully embody the “holiday cheer” that back-to-school shopping brings, Staples built its campaign around the popular Christmas hit and decked the campaign with traditional and digital channels. Sandy Salmon, director of advertising, says Staples ran it’s first “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year” TV spot in 1994 and is now on its fifth rendition (created by its current agency of record MacLaren).

In terms of old school channels, Staples is featuring in-store signage, radio ads, movie preview spots, and TV commercials. But not all of these established channels are time-honored traditions. For example, this year marks the first time the brand has included cinema spots in its campaign. Salmon notes that the movie previews, which are playing on more than 1,500 screens across Canada, were included to attract mothers taking children between seven to 17 years old to the movies during the summertime. She adds that the radio ads, which start in early August, are also being played on stations that attract moms.

As for digital channels, Staples is teaming up with digital media company Crucial Interactive to arange digital media buys on websites including, and Staples, which is also Canada’s largest Internet retailer, included this initiative to expand its reach and to target those shopping for back-to-school supplies online, says Valerie Outmezguine, PR specialist for Staples Canada. Outmezguine says Staples will also be launching its Back-to-School Center—a landing page that contains weekly deals, videos, sources for teachers, and shopping lists sorted by brand, grade, or product category.

“More and more people are shopping online and we think that it’s a good way to connect with them for back to school,” Outmezguine says.

The campaign launched July 29 and runs until just before the first bell on September 7.

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