Archive for November, 2015

Not All Scams are Cut and Dry

Friday, November 27th, 2015

Alison Walker, Account Specialist


When most people hear the word fraud, they typically think of the usual suspects – identity theft, a phone call about a free cruise, or everyone’s favourite, the Nigerian prince scam. But the Alberta Securities Commission (ASC) wants to remind Albertans that “not all scams are cut and dry”.

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To share that message, the ASC enlisted Brookline’s help to take over a barbershop in downtown Calgary. On Thursday, November 5, 2015, Brookline and the ASC transformed Denim & Smith Barbershop in Bankers Hall into the CheckFirst Barbershop.

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Guests were treated to free haircuts and trims over the lunch hour, as well as some smart advice on how to make safe investment decisions. To fit with the theme, Calgary’s own Heebee Jeebees also dressed up as a barbershop quartet and sang a custom jingle written just for the ASC.

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The activation garnered solid media attention, earning coverage from the Calgary Herald, Global TV, Breakfast Television, CTV, CBC Calgary, CBC Edmonton, 660 News, and News Talk 770. The ASC also issued an Alberta-wide press release coinciding with the CheckFirst Barbershop to make sure all Albertans heard the message on how to protect themselves from fraud.

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November is Financial Literacy Month, making the CheckFirst Barbershop a timely reminder that Albertans should always do their homework before investing to ensure they don’t become victims of an investment scam. Visit for more information on how you can protect yourself from investment fraud.

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-Alison Walker is an Account Specialist with Brookline PR and brings experience in branding, marketing communications, internal communications, event management and media relations. She is enthusiastic about working with clients to communicate their stories in fresh and exciting ways.

Crisis Communications: Don’t Neglect the Follow-Through

Thursday, November 19th, 2015

Doug Self, Account Executive


Volkswagen’s recent “Diesel Dupe” emissions scandal is the type of massive corporate crisis that haunts the nightmares of PR practitioners everywhere. Beyond the obvious (that small detail of knowingly lying about your products), there is plenty to be learned from the ongoing situation.

It is important for businesses of all sizes to have a crisis communications plan in place to ensure a swift, meaningful response in the event of a crisis. No doubt a company as large as VW had several gears moving as soon as news of the scandal broke. A timely execution of the plan is crucial, whether it be to take responsibility, express regret, or to simply acknowledge the issue and commit to investigating it.

The step that is often overlooked is the importance of follow-through after the public statement and ensuring the steps to rectify the situation match its significance. Did the company’s statement say it was looking into the situation, ensuring additional training would occur, or that changes to a product were being planned? Those items need to happen and should be well documented. This is especially important when the crisis receives widespread media coverage as the journalists that covered the situation will more-often-than-not follow up with to check if what was promised is actually being put in to action. Essentially – make sure to walk the talk.

The VW case is an extreme example as every piece of information is being scrutinized by the media. With several executives already vacating their posts and the company posting its first quarterly loss in 15 years, it is safe to say the weight of their faults have been felt by the company and key stakeholders.

But, has that translated into resolution for owners of the affected VW vehicles? That part is yet to be determined, but it is certainly headed in the right direction. The initial offering of a “goodwill package” consists of a $500 prepaid Visa card and $500 to spend at a VW dealership. This has been widely regarded as a mediocre start to their promise to “make it right” with VW owners. The company has acknowledged that there is more to come, but it certainly doesn’t feel like the follow-through on their resolution matches the severity of their faults – yet.

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-Doug Self is an Account Executive in Brookline with a background rooted in the technology industry. His expertise lies in media relations, content creation, and communication and marketing strategy.

Brookline Helps House of Nonie Launch Chic New Collection

Tuesday, November 3rd, 2015

Dakota Sandquist, Assistant Account Specialist


Brookline recently supported local up-and-coming fashion designer House of Nonie with an event celebrating the launch of the Spring/Summer 2016 Collection.  The event, which hosted Calgary key influencers and fashion aficionados, was held on October 22, 2015 at Studio 122, a beautiful, modern studio located in the heart of Calgary. The event included a champagne welcome, custom made Grey Goose cocktails created by the designer herself, personalized fortune cookies and tables full of delectable small bites.



Brookline was responsible for managing event logistics and execution for the entire event, which included sourcing vendors, coordinating invites and arranging for various sponsored items to ensure the event was executed flawlessly.




On the day of the event, the Brookline team channeled their inner Jillian Harris as they transformed a blank space into a chic and illustrious masterpiece.  The team managed vendors, oversaw guest experience, and assisted House of Nonie as it launched its new SS16 collection.



The event was well attended, the collection extremely well-received and social media was abundant with key influencer conversation and coverage.


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-Dakota Sandquist is an Assistant Account Specialist with Brookline and has a background in the hospitality and non-profit sectors. Her expertise lies in strategic communications, brand development and management and media relations.