Canadian Rental Association
CRA PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE: June 2013
By Jeff Campbell
National Rental Awareness Week took place from May 6 through 10 and we were delighted with the response we received from members and media from across Canada.
By Jeff Campbell
National Rental Awareness Week took place from May 6 through 10 and we were delighted with the response we received from members and media from across Canada. The goal of NRAW was to create buzz within our member base, media outlets and the public across the country. I strongly believe, on our first effort, we accomplished that goal.
Member events across Canada (before, during and after NRAW) included a number of open houses, customer appreciation barbecues, mini trade shows and road shows.
An aggressive media relations campaign was launched at the end of April and continued on through NRAW, with outreach to daily newspapers, radio stations, television stations and blogs across Canada. Two separate media releases were distributed to media outlets across the country. The first was a formal announcement about National Rental Awareness Week, and the second focused on tips for consumers with a tie-in to rental equipment and awareness.
Feedback from the media was strong, and the reception significantly positive. Ed Dwyer, chairman of the board for the Canadian Rental Association was interviewed on Breakfast Television Winnipeg Live as part of a “Tips to Spruce Up Your Yard” segment. Ed did an absolutely amazing job with the four-minute interview, the Canadian Rental Association received numerous on-air mentions and, more importantly, renting versus buying was a key message the host touched on.
Later in the week, Dale Pardy from Butler Scaffolding and Rental, was interviewed by CTV (Atlantic) Morning Live in Halifax. A segment about lawn care tips using equipment was featured and included product demonstrations. Television coverage wrapped up one week following NRAW, with Gord Allen from Ottawa Rental & Supply going live on CTV Ottawa’s Morning Show. The segment focused on lawn and garden rental equipment. Additional media coverage included newspaper and radio in Saskatchewan, as well as online coverage through such online sites as Yahoo! Speaking of online, you can get links to the video from those TV appearances on the CRA Facebook page at www.facebook.com/canadianrental .
One of the key components that we take away from NRAW is that there are a wide-variety of great CRA member stories that appeal to mainstream media and the general public. Feedback from media that didn’t cover NRAW didn’t necessarily mean they weren’t interested, it just meant the timing on their end wasn’t ideal. Outlets that encouraged us to keep them updated with additional stories and CRA member updates included Canada AM, Breakfast Television in Vancouver, Toronto and Calgary, the National Post; the Toronto Star and Global Montreal, among others.
NRAW proved to be a success with the resulting media coverage that came out of the campaign, but more importantly hundreds of thousands of viewers and readers learned about the rental industry and its positive benefits across Canada.
Although NRAW is over for 2013, our public relations campaign will move forward. The CRA will continue to pitch new and interesting story ideas and angles in a concerted effort to strengthen rental awareness across Canada.
To this end, I encourage you to contact our executive director, Mandy Wellnitz, with any story ideas and/or events and celebrations you have upcoming. We will do our best to work with our members in getting your story out to the media and mass public.