Institute of Communication Agencies

Institute of Communication Agencies

January 24, 2011 08:02 ET

Young Canadians Tune Into Advertising

-Institute of Communication Agencies Survey Shows Young Adults Are More Engaged, Receptive to Advertising-

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Jan. 24, 2011) -

Editors Note: There is a Factsheet associated with this press release.

Young Canadians have a seemingly insatiable appetite for accessing and sharing digital content, but a recent survey from the Institute of Communication Agencies (ICA) has also identified 18 – 34 year olds as the group most receptive and engaged in advertising, making them a unique target for marketers looking to connect with consumers who demonstrate a more open inclination towards the advertising industry.

The survey, conducted by Ipsos Reid, showed that 36 per cent of Canadians 18 to 34 actively share a humorous or clever ad with others online versus the national average of 23 per cent. As well, one in every five young adults (18 per cent) has searched online to find ads they have enjoyed in the past, two times more than Canadians between the ages of 45 - 54 (nine percent). At 25 per cent this group was also more than twice as likely than the average to be excited about seeing advertising from their favourite brands (11 per cent). 

The survey results were announced on the first day of Advertising Week, a national initiative spearheaded by the ICA to celebrate the industry's social and economic impact on the Canadian landscape. This week's keynote speaker is legendary musician, Gene Simmons, a veritable licensing and merchandising mastermind, with over 2,500 licenses worldwide.

"This year's survey showed how online growth, coupled with innovative, witty and thought-provoking ads are enticing a generation to share and engage with a brand - something marketers have been striving to achieve for years, "said Gillian Graham, CEO of the ICA. "Advertising Week is proud to be able to give the advertising community a platform to recognize and celebrate the success of our industry, showcasing those achievements that have made significant inroads to resonate with their target audiences."

Effectiveness of Advertising

The survey also uncovered Canadians' impressions of the influence advertising has on their purchasing decisions:

  • Television spots, followed by in-store displays have the most influence on purchases (26 and 19 per cent respectively), however regardless of the form of advertising, adults 18 – 34 are at least one-third more likely, if not more, to admit being influenced by these mediums.
  • Overall, Canadians indicate that advertising promoting low pricing (32 per cent) or eye catching imagery (24 per cent) are most likely to inspire a call-to-action while one out of 10 respondents (9 per cent) indicated the inclusion of a website address within the ad spurs a follow-up; this figure jumped to 15 percent among respondents 18 - 34.

Drivers for Sharing

Sharing ads is not limited to younger generations. Almost half of Canadians (44 per cent) have shared ads online with friends, family, or colleagues and of those, 72 per cent have been motivated to do so because they felt the commercial was funny. Among those who view super bowl ads online, one-in-six Canadians 18 – 34 (17 per cent) indicated they always share at least one Super Bowl ad within their personal network, double that of the national average 9 per cent.

More Than Influencing Spending Dollars

A significant number of respondents acknowledged that advertising plays a larger role than just informing consumers to make future purchasing decisions. Twenty-eight per cent strongly agree that advertising generates good competition which benefits the consumer, while a similar proportion (27 per cent) strongly agree that that advertisements in newspapers, radio and TV subsidizes the cost of delivering media to consumers.

Advertising is also seen as playing an increasing role in bringing societal issues and resources to assist or inform Canadians the forefront. According to those surveyed:

  • Four in 10 (42 per cent) stated the advertising industry has had a positive impact on the issue of drinking and driving.
  • One third (33 per cent) recognize that public health education such as flu shots has been positively impacted by the industry. 
  • Just under one third (31 per cent) associate the industry as having a positive influence on 'greener living' and how to live an overall healthier lifestyle (29 per cent).

Canada's third annual Advertising Week is taking place from January 24 to 28, 2011 in four Canadian cities, including Toronto, Montreal, Edmonton and Vancouver. Created as a dedicated public platform to showcase the industry's creativity in business communication, the event aims to inspire and develop the next generation of talent for the industry. For a complete list of speakers, events and information, please visit and on Twitter at: @adweekcdn.

About Advertising Week

Tickets for Advertising Week's events across Canada are now on sale at Space is limited and will sell out quickly.

Advertising Week is made possible by the generous volunteer contributions of several leading agencies, including: Grey Canada, Narrative Advocacy Media, Bensimon Byrne, Publicis Canada, Optimum Public Relations, Saatchi & Saatchi, Brandworks, Bos, Rain 43 and Juniper Park.

Advertising Week is being spearheaded by the ICA, with support confirmed from the following Founding Contributors: Canadian Marketing Association, National Advertising Benevolent Society, Advertising Standards Council, Out-of-Home Marketing Association, Association of Canadian Advertisers, Association of Quebec Advertising Agencies and Supporting Contributor: Audit Bureau of Circulations.

Key sponsors of Advertising Week include: Toronto Star, CTV, Shaw Media, Corus Entertainment, CBC, Microsoft Advertising, MDC Partners, Yahoo! Canada, Google, AOL, and

About the ICA

The Institute of Communication Agencies or the ICA ( is the professional business association which represents Canada's communication and advertising agencies. ICA promotes thought leadership, higher standards and best practices. It serves as the largest source of information, advice, education and training for Canada's communication and advertising industry. ICA's member agencies and subsidiaries account for over 75% of all national advertising in Canada, with an economic impact worth more than $19 billion annually.

*These are the findings of an Ipsos Reid poll conducted on behalf of the ICA from December 17th to December 30th, 2010. This online survey of 1,006 adult residents of Canada was conducted via the Ipsos Opinions Online Panel, one of Ipsos Reid's national online panels. The results are based on a sample where weighting was employed to balance demographics and ensure that the sample's composition reflects that of the actual Canadian population according to Census data. A survey with an unweighted probability sample of this size and a 100% response rate would have an estimated margin of error of +/-3.0 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, of what the results would have been had the entire population of adults in Canada been polled. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.

To view the Advertising in Canada Factsheet, please visit the link below:

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