The delivery service launches its first major Canadian campaign and first collaboration with new agency partner john st.
Among businesses that have been impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic, restaurants have been hit particularly hard. With restrictions imposed on indoor dining and recommendations to stay close to home, delivery has become an essential service for both restaurants and consumers. This has also given rise to a movement to support local establishments.
To celebrate the local restaurants that are the cornerstones of neighbourhoods across Canada, food delivery service DoorDash has launched a campaign to remind diners that delivery and take-out can not only support local restaurants, but their neighbourhoods as well.
'Every neighbourhood in your hands' takes viewers on an animated journey of miniature neighbourhoods like Montreal’s Chinatown, Toronto’s Kensington, or Vancouver’s Gastown. As a DoorDash courier cycles through 'the flavourhood' as it’s referred to in the spot, foodies can spot local mainstays like Toronto’s Kinton Ramen and original plant-based chain Fresh, Montreal bistro Mandy’s, Vancouver’s Tacofino, or legendary Calgary burger joint Flipp’n Burgers. And of course there is a Tim Hortons.
The spot, directed by Stevie Gee and Essy May of London’s Blinkink, is underscored by a remix of the iconic track 'Ain’t No Mountain High Enough', originally written by Nicholas Ashford and Valerie Simpson, and finishes with a reminder of what DoorDash truly delivers – every neighbourhood to your hands.
“DoorDash celebrates our neighbourhood restaurants and the go-to faves that make Canada such a unique and vibrant food culture,” said Heather Cameron, senior brand manager at DoorDash. “We are proud to support our passionate restaurant partners, dedicated Dasher team, and community of customers, and this work reflects that.”
john st. executive creative director, Cher Campbell, added: “DoorDash has this amazing origin story – it was founded to support and empower local economies and their entrepreneurs. Through this campaign we are showcasing just a few of the unique neighbourhoods and culinary gems across the country.”
The campaign features :60, :30 and :15 video installations and is in market through 27th December. It’s complemented by regional OOH and print, digital video, display and Spotify audio. A social specific buy on Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat round out the fully integrated campaign. The campaign will continue throughout Q4 with contextual OOH, digital media purchased through Wavemaker, and the launch of Canadian social media handles, Facebook and Instagram.
In addition, #DashSquad will be kicking off in Vancouver at the end of October, which is managed by DoorDash’s Experiential and Influencer agency Ruckus Digital. The program will have local influencers and celebrities surprising highly deserving customers with their orders and encouraging the audience to acknowledge those in their lives that deserve a moment. For the Quebec market, a DoorDash produced web series created by Radiance will be running on CBC’s ICI TOU.TV.
Created as a response to the pandemic, it’s fitting that how this campaign came together was unconventional. Heather said she set out to disrupt the 'traditional' client / agency process from the outset, and working under the restrictions of Covid-19 forewent the traditional pitch process by issuing a 48-hour challenge to a shortlist of agencies.
“We asked the agencies to respond to one strategic question on a single page and gave full support to collaborate together on that work. No creative spec work was allowed and fair compensation for the work set up this challenge as a simple and powerful relationship chemistry test under time pressure,” said Heather.
Following the win, john st. was immersed in a rapid onboarding, workshopped an experimental approach to define a new positioning for the international brand, and led a collaboration with partners spanning the globe to launch a fully integrated campaign – all while working remotely. To this day, none of the team members involved in the making of it have met in person.
Stephanie Hurst, president at john st., said: “Developing trust, hashing out problems, and creating the personal connections that are critical to a healthy agency/client relationship have all been made more complex by Covid. It’s been weird at times and DoorDash has challenged us to shake up our familiar ways of working, but we’re learning a lot and we’re immensely proud of the work our team has done.”