In 2022, a huge social phenomenon was the Great Resignation, finding record numbers of people (especially women) leaving their jobs after the COVID-19 pandemic, looking for new and different opportunities. Women across Canada began turning their dreams and passions into booming businesses by starting side hustles. Enter Simplii Financial, a digital banking provider that makes it quick and easy for women to tackle this daunting task, with access to financial services like no-fee chequing accounts and high-interest savings accounts.
As the relentless pandemic shook up lives, priorities, and the meaning of “business as usual” over the past two years, Canadian women were busy side hustling—or seriously considering the idea. With the way people work vastly changing in a post-pandemic world, and their financial needs also changing along with it, we needed to reintroduce the idea to consumers that Simplii Financial is a modernized and more efficient digital banking choice for today’s multi-tasking side hustler. Having few efforts in-market since the onset of the pandemic, for many consumers and media, this campaign would be a reintroduction to the Simplii brand, meaning we had to create an ownable narrative aligned with a timely news hook to ensure this would be a success. Spoiler alert… the hustle was a success.
To celebrate International Women’s Day, this program brought together a group of barrier-breaking Canadian women who have launched successful businesses to offer their tips and advice on how to get side hustles started. To anchor this program, we conducted a survey that demonstrated the widespread growth of the side hustle phenomenon and uncovered Canadian women's intentions for 2022. The data from the survey was used to generate earned media and armed our spokesperson, Abby Albino, to underscore the need to have a financial plan and savings to facilitate a planned side hustle. To take the conversation online, we developed the Simplii Side Hustle content series with our side hustlers (Abby Albino, Avery Francis and Zehra Allibhai) where they shared their personal stories and the challenges they faced when breaking their individual biases to succeed in their industry. Leveraging International Women’s Day as a hook for our launch, the program was amplified using a paid media partnership with The Kit. The partnership involved a digital event/panel titled: So you want to be a side hustler? Advice + Tips from Canada’s Best Side Hustlers. In advance of the event, a paid social campaign ran across Instagram and Facebook to promote the event and content series.
Using a persuasive combination of earned, paid, partnerships, collaborations, influencer marketing, content and social media made this campaign a truly 360 degree effort. It was one of the most successful, timely and thoughtful campaigns during a time consumers were in need of simple solutions and searching for change. Simplii helped amplify the voices of three side hustling women and as a result, connected with an audience who were receptive and excited to learn more. An onslaught of both media coverage and social media impressions on International Women’s Day resulted in 94 pieces of coverage across print, online and broadcast media and over 34.1 million social media impressions.
The program helped fuel brand awareness and consideration among Canadians of Simplii Financial as the leading digital bank and created an ownable territory for Simplii to continue to build as a brand in the years to come.