CPAs: Masters of change

New advertising campaign elevates CPAs and the CPA brand.

Looking back to look forward

It began in 2013 as Canada’s new Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA) designation emerged.

The profession’s first public awareness advertising campaign played on the prefix “PRO” as a synonym for “professional” — with PROgress, PROductivity and PROfitability demonstrating the skills, commitment and vision of Canadian CPAs, and distinguishing the profession from all other business designations. These words were set against a strong blue colour, ensuring they were unmistakably seen.

We followed that campaign by asking “Need a PRO?” diving deeper into the meaning of the word “professional” and the attributes that define true professionals who hold the CPA designation. In the years that followed, the focus shifted away from awareness to understanding as “The right fit for business” campaign launched, which included a mind teaser based on actual puzzle pieces.

“Navigating Change” is the latest campaign focusing on a CPA’s ability to leverage their expertise and navigate through disruptive change. This campaign was the first to adopt a new creative direction for the CPA brand, featuring CPAs at the centre of a rapidly changing business landscape juxtaposed against a cool, teal blue background.

The campaign evolves this fall with the question, “Are you on the right side of change?”

With the world of business constantly changing, companies need to stay one step ahead of change or suffer the consequences. This year’s public awareness advertising campaign demonstrates how CPAs have the right solutions for complex business problems — drawing inspiration from their surrounding world, both past and present.

Over the next seven months, the profession will promote its new multiplatform public awareness campaign engaging audiences across Canada by illustrating how CPAs use their expertise, data analysis and strategic vision to steer success in a dynamic marketplace.

“Since the launch of the CPA designation in 2013, brand advertising, and marketing and communication initiatives have steadily increased awareness of the CPA brand to an impressive 48 percent unaided and 88 percent aided among the business community,” says Heather Whyte, senior vice-president, Strategic Communications, Branding and Public Affairs, CPA Canada. “Our new brand campaign aims to increase understanding of the value CPAs create for business, and in the process, enhance demand for the Canadian CPA.”

The campaign

Built on the foundations of the “Navigating Change” campaign, you will soon see the familiar blues and greens that make the CPA brand in full page colour print ads appearing in Maclean’s, Report on Business, and L’actualité.

The print campaign will launch hand in hand with 15- and 30-second national television spots airing on major TV networks and specialty channels such as CTV, Global, CBC, Discovery, HGTV, and TSN. The TV commercial highlights an industry that has undergone profound change. It uses hindsight to travel back in time at a critical juncture and show the difference a CPA could have made.

To increase its reach, this campaign will also be featured in online videos, display and digital ads, billboards and superboards across the country, in conjunction with sponsored posts, InMail and targeted social media messages through Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. Out-of-home and social ads ask tough and timely questions around the changing business landscape. Topics include climate change, ride-sharing, free trade and many more. This “Ask a CPA” campaign will also include sponsored partnerships with the Globe and Mail and CBC’s Dragon’s Den.

Taken together, the campaign is designed to show that CPAs can help businesses stay ahead of change.

The right side of change

“CPAs today are more than ready to face the demands of an ever-changing world. They are value creators, trustworthy advisors and leaders in good business across different industries,” notes Joy Thomas, president and CEO, CPA Canada. “CPAs are equipped with the knowledge, the skills and the expertise needed to succeed in a world that demands anticipation of the unexpected. And so we ask, “Are you on the right side of change? Ask a CPA.”

Editor’s note
The next issue of Member News will land in your inbox on October 10, 2017. Enjoy the issue and, as always, let us know what you think!