When COVID-19 struck, National Film Day had to shift their cross-Canada film events to online and Innovate By Day supplied communications expertise to help make it happen.

This screen capture of part of the NCFD Livestream event features actor Sandra Oh.

The Challenge

National Canadian Film Day is an annual one-day, coast-to-coast-to-coast celebration of Canadian cinema. But COVID-19 made the day’s usual public screenings at movie theatres across Canada impossible. Multiple in-person screenings were replaced with virtual watch parties and a four-hour Livestream event was planned.

With only one week left before the big day, National Canadian Film Day (NCFD)  brought the Innovate By Day team on board to consult on the communications,  live event production, digital marketing and promotion of the day’s events.

What We Did

Innovate By Day was initially contracted to consult as senior communications specialists to support the needs of the Reel Canada team and various stakeholders in the lead-up to and day-of National Canadian Film Day events. Our team:

  • Worked strategically with the Reel Canada team to leverage the outreach to stakeholders, industry partners and audiences about the day
  • Were on call and actively participated in the planning and execution of the day-long events
  • Consulted on the strategy for a four-day paid media campaign, and implemented the Facebook/Instagram campaigns
  • Supported the writing of social media content for the Reel Canada team
  • Wrote sample messaging for partners and stakeholders to use in support of the events
  • Reached out to key stakeholders to help facilitate day-of events 
  • Designed and produced graphics for the social channels and the Livestream

Over the course of the week, the Reel Canada identified the need for technical consulting specific to the Livestream event. Given our past experience working with Livestream events, we were able to provide a dedicated consultant who:

  • Acted as a key member of the Livestream broadcast team, coordinating every guest in live event
  • Assisted with producing & recording pre-interviews that were used as roll-ins for the Livestream
  • Helped to solve technical challenges and coordinate multiple stakeholders
IMAGE: One of several branded trivia cards created by Innovate By Day for the NCFD Livestream.
IMAGE: a tweet from STRONGER TOGETHER, TOUS ENSEMBLE featuring Justin Bieber, Johnny Orlando, Donovan Woods and Alessia Cara.
Screen capture of a National Canadian Film Day Facebook video ad driving to the website and livestream.

The Results

Innovate By Day was able to help make National Canadian Film Day’s first all-online edition a success. NCFD had a potential reach of over 40 million people due to the participation of many Canadian celebrities and industry organizations, including Ryan Reynolds and Sandra Oh, Netflix, Telefilm, ACTRA, and Canadian distributors and broadcasters.

Our digital ads expertise ensured that ad content and the audiences targeted were extremely well-matched. In only four days, the NCFD Facebook/Instagram paid campaign earned: 

  • 750,000 impressions and 500,000 video views
  • An exceptional 73% average watch time 
  • 100% completion of the videos by 61% of viewers

Innovate By Day helped Reel Canada execute a successful online celebration of Canadian film, with excellent digital and social content and no technical glitches in the Livestream. Our agile, experienced team was able to quickly assess and pivot their role to address the needs of Reel Canada within a very tight time frame.