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#THANKAFRAMER Month Salutes American Heroes

Social media-driven video campaign knocks it out of the park

Having worked with Jib for 14+ years on Norbord‘s US advertising, I perked up when an unusual brief crashed onto my desk last summer.

It said, “Norbord wants to show big love to framers,” the carpenters who install its wood-based wall sheathing, sub-flooring and sub-roofing products.

Thank A Framer

I immediately thought video… something that would frame hardworking framers as American heroes.

Side note: Some 95% of US framers are Hispanic, and as you might’ve heard, the US administration is not exactly in the midst of a “We Love Hispanics!” moment. They seem to be the only people in the US who want to earn $8-12 grand a month doing rough carpentry.

I wrote a video script, an “Ode to American Framers” poem to accompany it, the THANKAFRAMER website, developed a contest and a print campaign to launch it in the trades.

ThankAFramer Screengrab

We launched #THANKAFRAMER in English and Spanish via Facebook and other social channels on Sept 1/17.

Objective: 500,000 views by month’s end. Reality: 800,000. By November, we’d hit 1.5m.

The response from framers was rapid and unequivocal: They LOVED it! The thank-yous to Norbord poured in profusely. They posted pictures of themselves, their framing crews, their best work, their families.

Young American men and women wrote, asking how to become a framer.

It was mind-blowing, moving and downright tear-jerking. I’ve never created anything this well-received.

Meanwhile, we cajoled Norbord to donate — at first US$200,000; weeks later $1.1 million — to the US Home Builders Institute, to fund new training & recruitment programs aimed at addressing the shortage (currently at 200,000) of skilled laborers in US home building.

The next phase involves recruitment using humor. Watch this space.

Me and My SE: Hired to write about being a hooligan

Documenting a hell machine known as the KTM 950SE

Me and my KTM950SE

Last year I was engaged by Traction eRag magazine to write a piece about owning the world’s most perfect hooligan device, the KTM 950 Super Enduro R, a 950cc, 98hp, street-legal dirtbike.

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I enjoyed myself immensely writing it and doing the photo shoot with my friend and riding buddy Nick Dunlop. The story came out in the Jan 25/18 issue.

Slide ‘er over to page 50 to read it.



Saponetti cleans up in Toronto

Turns out, recycling sucks.

This fresh, new startup delivers all kinds of high-quality, nicely scented and non-scented housecleaning, laundry and body washes to Toronto homes in mason jars, which they collect and reuse when they visit you next time. You pour the mason jars’ contents into your existing plastic soap containers and keep reusing them. Why do this? Because, as you may not know, recycling ain’t nearly as green as we’re told it is.

Saponetti stops the recycling cycle cold.

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Upsiide’s Automatic Website

New Website Automates Market Research

A recent project with to word together a great idea — user-directed market research, at both the client and consumer levels.

Zinata – Brave new company gets bold new website

Collaborative of deeply experienced supply chain experts

They learned their craft working with big names like P&G, and call themselves “the anti-consultants”. I met the principles of Zinata for my briefing and was most impressed with their brilliance and BS-free approach to a very BS-freighted industry. Here’s the site I wrote — with an absolute minimum of corporate gibberish. It was my first time working with anti-consultants. I recommend it.


Zinata 3

Zinata 1





Bradlee Ryall Golf Academy – New Website

Bradlee Ryall – Elevating The Teaching of Golf

Bradlee Ryall, championship golfer and legendary instructor, operates the leading golf academy in the region. His operations span six golf courses throughout the western Greater Toronto Area and Southern Ontario. I was brought in to meet the man, absorb his impressive story, and write the copy for the new site. Bradlee likes a bit of humour, which makes frequent appearances on the site. And’s designers knocked this project right out of the, um, fairway.

Bradlee Ryall Golf Academy Landing Page

Bradlee Ryall Golf Academy Sample Page

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Malivoire Wine Print Campaign

Mini Print Campaign for the Niagara Vintner’s Guilty Men, Gamay and Lady Bug Labels

Another joint production between myself and Richard Marazzi Design for Malivoire Wines. (Richard photoshopped each ad into a page from Now magazine to show ‘em at work before they ran.)

Malivoire Guilty Men Red Wine

Malivoire Lady Bug Rose

Malivoire Gamay Red Wine

Kingsway College School Video

I developed the concept and script for this Toronto private school’s video. It thanked financial contributors for their generosity. Execution by Richard Marazzi Design.

Video for ingredients house L.V. Lomas

I came up with the concept and script

Produced by Jackson Marketing

Geneva Centre for Autism Video

How The Autists helps

Toronto’s Geneva Centre for Autism commissioned me to produce a video to screen at The Autists fundraiser in spring 2015. Its purpose: Show how the money helps teens and young adults prepare to live independently, enter the workforce, maybe even run their own businesses. Camera, lighting and sound by Darcy Muenchrath. Edited by Greg Feir.