The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted a major disconnect between the Ontario government and its citizens in key areas including - the economy, climate action, racial justice, affordable housing and seniors/long-term care facilities.
The Green Party of Ontario sought to launch an Ontario-wide engagement strategy with key stakeholders and the public to identify the challenges, needs and gaps in the above-mentioned areas. The Green Party of Ontario aimed to use this information - along with potential solutions noted by stakeholders and the public - to inform its upcoming election platform and campaign.
Ford Global Group worked with the Green Party of Ontario to develop a four-part strategy based on early engagement with a diverse range of stakeholders:
Digital marketing campaign. We facilitated cross-marketing promotions for public participation in online surveys and 5 virtual town hall meetings via social media platforms, the GPO’s website and a Google AdWords campaign. The Google AdWords campaign received 593,072 impressions over a six-week period and provided valuable insight into target market demographics.
Engage & interview a diverse range of stakeholders. We engaged with and interviewed stakeholders from local government offices, as well as non-government organizations, not-for-profit organizations and the general public. This engagement was facilitated via 1:1 interviews over Zoom, Town Halls and 1 Mass Online Survey. These efforts revealed important issues to both stakeholders and the public, which helped the Green Party of Ontario identify potential opportunities for platform growth.
Perform competitor analysis. A competitor analysis was performed on the major political parties in Ontario - with a focus on the Liberal #TaketheMic series. Insights were gathered to further determine themes and suggested resolutions made by the general public.
Compiled analytics and information. We compiled the analytics and information gathered from the above-mentioned engagement initiatives to find common themes within the key issues facing Ontario residents. This information was further used to inform the GPO platform committee on which issues are most important to Ontario residents and therefore, should be the focus of their platform such as affordable housing, racial justice and caring for seniors.
By starting the stakeholder and public engagement early - and planning from the outset to incorporate insights into its platform - the Green Party of Ontario will be able to strengthen and build a more credible platform and campaign to better serve Ontario residents. Through this process, the GPO has identified the challenges and gaps in needs facing Ontario residents and the potential opportunities and resolutions to these challenges. It has also given them insight into the public's perception of the Green Party - from which we have provided recommendations on how to strengthen public perception and further develop a reputable identity.
The tech industry has an inequality and representation problem due to systemic barriers put in place against members of racialized communities. As technology sees extensive growth and demand, Black people remain dramatically underrepresented in the field - Black tech workers make up only 2.6% in Canada’s tech industry, and 7% in the United States.
Reason One - a full-service digital agency - sought to help dismantle the systemic barriers in the tech industry by launching a scholarship fund and mentorship program for Black students in digital tech programs. This program was explicitly focused on removing systemic, financial and socio-economic barriers that Black students encounter in their tech career paths.
Ford Global Group worked with Reason One to conceptualize the Mentorship and Scholarship Program as well as develop a comprehensive public relations campaign with a focus on raising awareness and driving candidate applications.
To begin, we assisted Reason One with the initial conceptualization of the Mentorship & Scholarship Program and determined on a broad scope what the program would look like for the 6 winners. From there, we developed a comprehensive digital media plan that spanned Ontario and South Carolina. Our digital media plan involved cross-marketing promotions via social media platforms, Reason One’s website and featured articles written on education websites. We further developed partnerships with academic institutions such as Ryerson University, Juno College, George Brown, Morris College and Seneca College which promoted Reason One’s program to their students via their website and an email blast. Other non-academic partnerships included the Canadian Race Relations Foundation, Nia Centre for the Arts and Charleston Women in Tech.
Our objective was to raise awareness, therefore, we also developed a news media strategy that saw Reason One featured on outlets such as CityNews Toronto, Breakfast Television, Carolina Panorama, and Live5 News in Charleston, SC.
The exposure generated from our comprehensive media strategy led to a 74% increase in new visitors to Reason One’s website and 4,538 views on the Reason One Mentorship and Scholarship Program landing page with almost 80 applicants. We further assisted Reason One with determining the best applicants based on their academic achievements, dedication to their community, and plans for their future. Based on its remarkable success, Reason One will continue its Mentorship and Scholarship Program on an annual basis, for years to come.