– Trade Association intent on transforming bird's negative image after 'Miracle on the Hudson' –
St. John's, Newfoundland, February 11, 2009 — Peppercom announced today it had been retained by the Canadian Goose Association, headquartered here, to launch an aggressive public image campaign for the foul fowl.
The agency's charge will be to "…create heightened awareness of, and appreciation for, the Canadian goose."
Peppercom was selected after an intense search that included 10 agencies, including the incumbent, Flock & Flock of Saskatoon.
Robert Gander, president and CEO of the association, said Peppercom was chosen because it was both "…a high-flying firm and one that can quickly and consistently communicate the many positive attributes of the Canadian goose."
Gander said the PR agency search was initiated in the immediate aftermath of the US Air Flight 1549 crash into New York City's Hudson River (see: "Miracle on the Hudson"). "That was the final straw or, in our case, the final feather," said Gander. "The Canadian Goose has been blamed for every conceivable calamity known to mankind, and we've had it up to here," he said, pointing to his bill.
Steve Cody, managing partner of Peppercom, said his firm would employ a mix of traditional and viral efforts on the CGA's behalf. "We've worked with many tired, bedraggled or misunderstood brands in the past and know how to spotlight the positives," he said. "Job one is letting the average American know about the bird's many attributes."
Among other things, said Cody, the 10-14 pound Canadian goose can procreate faster than you can say rabbit stew. For another, he said, they're hardy creatures and one of the few birds seen in northern climes during the winter. "My heart races whenever I see my boys flying in a tight V formation overhead," sighed Gander. Canadian geese also chill out on the ponds of most corporate headquarters. "More than one stressed Fortune 500 executive has written to tell us how peaceful the geese make him feel," mused Gander, wiping away a tear.
Cody said his agency will demand that all major networks provide equal time to Gander and other Canadian Geese spokespeople. "Turn on the tube nowadays and all you see is Sully this and Sully that (referring to the now-legendary US Air Pilot Sully Sullenberger). The only thing Sully is doing is sullying the good name of the Canadian goose," sniffed Cody
Neither Gander nor Cody would disclose the budget, but both agreed it would easily cover the fuel costs of a typical LaGuardia to Charlotte flight.
Gene Flock, CEO of Flock & Flock, said he was surprised the CGA had put its account up for review, but felt confident right up until the end that F&F would retain the business. "That damn Gander assured me the incumbent always has the advantage in account reviews. Now, I feel as dead as some of those geese that were sucked into the airplane engines," he said. Flock went on to note that his firm had already replaced the CGA billings with several other Canadian trade associations. "Birds of a feather…" he mused.
Peppercom is a strategic communications firm headquartered in New York, and with offices in San Francisco and London.
Great question, Steve. Robert Gander’s indicated the CGA will file a formal complaint against Sully, the flight attendants and the airline for what they called “…reckless endangerment of innocent Canadian Geese.” We’ll do everything we can to make sure the public understands how foul this incident really was.
Any plans for an issues campaign… demanding warning labels on jet engines?