Fast Forward Advertising and Marketing Week Kicks Off

Fast Forward Advertising and Marketing Week 2013 kicked off yesterday morning with a breakfast hosted by TC Media that featured opening remarks from Institute of Communications Agencies’ Gillian Graham and guest speaker François Olivier, President and Chief Executive Officer of TC Transcontinental. The blizzard-come-freezing-rain weather didn’t stop the eager advertising, marketing and media industry professionals from starting the week bright and early at Arcadian Court. 

Yesterday’s highlights included the Yahoo! Canada Speaker Series at the TIFF Lightbox from 4pm-6pm, followed by the coveted Cassies (Canada’s only advertising industry awards recognizing business effectiveness based on rigorous published cases) at the Ritz Carlton.

Here is what we can expect from the rest of the week:

Today (Tuesday, January 29):
The Toronto Board of Trade hosts FFWD Advertising & Marketing Week’s fourth annual Leading Social Change Day: A Passion for Change, which features insights offered by five of Canada’s leading creative directors and an Emmy-winning Canuck writer for The Simpsons. Next is the Facebook Canada session (stay tuned for highlights), from 1-2pm at the TIFF Lightbox, an engaging discussion on how to leverage the power of social to build lasting relationships. This is followed by the Toronto Star Speaker series, again at the TIFF Lightbox. Finally, participants can digest all the overload of information over cocktails at Toronto Star & ICA Cocktail Party at The Fifth from 6:00-8:00pm.

Wednesday is Next Generation Day, where students will get to experience ‘A Day in the Life’ at one of the agencies participating. Another highlight is the AICE Award Winners Screening, honouring the editors and post-production artists who craft the stories that deliver clients’ brand messages to the consumer. Jamie Byrne, Director, Content Strategy, YouTube, discusses the evolving content ecosystem, developments with original programming and the opportunity for brands to build and grow their own audiences at the Google Speaker Series from 2-3pm at the Lightbox and The MDC Partner’s Speaker Series will lead-off with a Q&A between Chuck Porter, Chairman of CP+B and Chief Strategist of MDC Partners and Susan Krashinsky, Advertising and Marketing Reporter at The Globe and Mail from 4-5:30pm at the Lightbox. Next is the MDC Partners’ Cocktail Party at the TIFF Lightbox from 5:30-7:00pm and the evening continues at the Astral Social Event from 7-10pm at ping-pong palace, Spin.

The creative class will appreciate the Creative Technology and You: The Best Uses of New Technology from Around the World on Thursday from 11-12am at the TIFF Lightbox. Next, The Canada Post Speaker Series examines Physical Meets Digital: How to increase your marketing ROI with integrated cross-media communication. Participants will discover what relationship marketing is all about from Mark Morin, President, Strategies Marketing Direct, and how to manage and scale customer relationships. The LinkedIn Marketing Solutions Series will present two keynote speakers, Alison Lange Engel, Global Marketing Director, LinkedIn Marketing Solutions, and Gary A. Fearnall, Director of Global Marketing Solutions LinkedIn Canada, and a photographer will be on hand to provide free professional profile photos. Guests will then hit the LinkedIn Marketing Solutions Cocktail Party from 6-7:30pm at the TIFF Lightbox before running off to the week’s biggest social event: Ad Ball at the Mod Club, which starts at 8pm.

Despite the party the night before, Friday begins at 9am with the Yahoo Speaker Series, where Yahoo! Canada’s Research Manager Nick Drew will discuss how Canadian consumers look for quality content online, how they engage with it across devices, and why this is important to marketers. Stick around for The Most Influential Brands in Canada at 11am, where Steve Levy, President, IPSOS REID, presents The Most Influential Brand study. Finally, at 12:30pm (and very Friday-afternoon appropriate), is the 2012 Cannes Winning Commercials, where guests can watch the world’s best commercials from the 2012 Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity.