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Giving Back: Resources to Help Edmonton’s Less Fortunate

Posted on December 16, 2016 by

Edmonton’s winters are often unforgiving (as has been more than clear these last couple of weeks with this extreme cold and wind), which puts the city’s less fortunate at even more of a disadvantage. According to Homeward Trust, Edmonton’s homeless population was at an estimated 1,752 in 2016, which is down 24% from 2014 but there is still a long way to go.

Thankfully, the warm hearts of Edmonton help make the season brighter for those people and especially around the holidays, there are a lot of ways to help out. The need for resources for homeless and disadvantaged people have been in the news a lot lately (Hope Mission having 24/7 beds or deaths given the cold weather). Here is a list of some resources to help fellow Edmontonians out this winter (and year-round!).

 

WHERE YOU CAN VOLUNTEER

Many of the city’s shelters and organizations wouldn’t be running without the countless hours volunteered by Edmontonians. As such, most of them are always looking for volunteers for a wide-range of positions (both year-round and seasonal around holiday events).

 

WHERE YOU CAN DONATE 

Most shelters and organizations in Edmonton that help at-risk populations also accept donations, but demand for food at Edmonton’s Food Bank has surged this year and the cold weather has left the shelves at the Edmonton Emergency Relief Services Society, in large part, empty. Both of these organizations work with other agencies in the city to provide resources to the homeless. So drop off food, clean out your closet, or make a monetary donation to these organizations!

 

OTHER WAYS TO HELP 

  • Call 2-1-1 if you see a homeless person in distress or are looking for information about other services. The people at 2-1-1 in Edmonton will get in touch with services and agencies in the city to help those at-risk. In case of an emergency, call 9-1-1.
  • Shovel your neighbour’s sidewalk! It’s a simple way to help out the elderly or people with mobility issues in your community. Check out programs here!
  • Research reputable organizations in the city to donate your money and time to. With our office located in downtown, panhandling is a common sight but EPS and the City ask people to consider donating money to the organizations in the city that help these at-risk people instead. We interviewed 104 Street’s community liaison with the EPS in 2015 about this.

There are a vast variety of organizations in the city that run year-round and this list is in no way exhaustive, but gives some great ideas of ways you can give back during the holiday season (Homeward Trust has a very comprehensive guide of shelters, centers, and organizations in Edmonton here). With cold weather seeming to be here to stay this time, don’t forget to open your heart and lend a hand to those who need it most!

Graphic Designer

Posted on November 22, 2016 by

Do you fancy yourself a brilliant graphic designer?

As it turns out we are looking for a brilliant graphic designer, but you don’t have to be fancy.
At least not for our sake.

The main things we are looking for are:

  • 3-5 years agency experience
  • Ability to think creatively, strategically and collaboratively
  • Solid multi-tasking skills with a strong attention to detail
  • Experience in executing ideas from concept to final file
  • Background in web design/UX development is an asset

So to recap:
Brilliant, yes. Design greatness, yes please. Fancy pants, not required.

Please forward your resume and portfolio to Hannah Miller, Jr. Art Director at hannah@zagcreative.ca.

Short listed applicants will be contacted for interviews.

*This position has been filled.

| November 11 | Job Postings
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Snapchat On-Demand Geofilters in Canada

Posted on August 25, 2016 by

Snapchat is a growing goliath when it comes to social media and messaging on mobile phones. Since launching in 2011, it has really resonated with a younger demographic and is said to have more users (estimated 150 million) than active monthly users on Twitter. Even since it launched, brands have been looking for ways to capitalize on the platform.

IMG_2016-08-15 16:37:46Geofilters are a creative way to customize your ‘Snap’ that you send on Snapchat. You can add an image overlay to the image you’re sending or posting as a story. With location services on, Geofilters are often custom to where you are or set up for particular events. Edmonton has a lot of Geofilters for local attractions or just generic Edmonton ones. zag creative first experimented with Geofilters back in 2015 when we developed and got approved a permanent Geofilter for on104th in downtown Edmonton. To this day, if you’re around our office on 104th street, you can see the filter we made! When we wrote that blog, however, Geofilters weren’t available to businesses.

Well now, over a year later, Snapchat has made it even easier for people and small businesses to pay for a custom Geofilter for their brand or event with On-Demand filters. Me, being the social media person I am, needed to give these a whirl as we begin to find strategic places to recommend these to our clients. My friends and I were throwing our second annual “Beer’lympics” and wanted to create a filter for the event, and so below is a glimpse at the process!

Design the Geofilter: A filter should be simple yet memorable in a way that will help it become associated with your event or brand. Because my event had to deal with alcohol, Snapchat rejected my first two filter attempts citing that it encouraged excessive drinking, but approved my third, pictured below. Snapchat’s turnaround time for approval was really fast (under a day) both times. Uploading the filter and positioning it in size and where you want it on the screen was really easy too! When designing, make sure to consider how it will overlay on both dark and light pictures (this was a mistake I made). Other guidelines and tips can be found here, but a major consideration is contact information like URLs, hashtags, and social media handles are not allowed.

rev

 

Map and time the Geofilter: Once it’s uploaded and positioned, pick exactly when and where you want your filter to run. For the area, you can draw an exact fence over the area you want your filter to show up at. I drew mine over my yard and didn’t have any problems with it showing up where it should. Below is an example of the interface with a fence over our office.

Screen Shot 2016-08-15 at 4.32.38 PM

Buy the Geofilter: Pricing for a Geofilter is a product mainly of the size of the area requested and duration that the filter will run. For mine, I had it run for 26 hours over an area of 120,702 square feet and the total cost was $52.30 USD.

Enjoy the Geofilter and check some analytics: Having a Geofilter at a party is a great little perk that people can get excited about. Just imagine the potential for a brand, to get that kind of natural exposure when people send pictures with your filter overlaid or post it on their story. Snapchat provides some basic (but exciting) analytics after your event on how your Geofilter was used. During the 26 hours it was live, it was used 90 times and seen 4,161 times (accounting for the number of times that people received a Snap with the Geofilter or saw it in a Snapchat Story)!!

Screen Shot 2016-08-15 at 4.33.51 PM

And there you have it! After trying out this process for myself, I’m convinced of the potential for companies to use this as a tool for event engagement and brand awareness around initiatives they’re running. It’s a great way to get the word out about an event in an organic way and reach people through something that’s engaging and personal. We’re really excited to provide recommendations and facilitate the implementation of these filters with our clients and see how this growing social media platform can provide awesome value for consumers!

Strategist (Maternity leave position)

Posted on July 21, 2016 by

One of our brilliant minds is working on making sure future generations also have a little brilliance. As such, we are looking for a strategic thinker to join our team from September to November to cover her maternity leave.

Why is strategy important in marketing? If you just scoffed and thought, “How isn’t it?” you just might be the right individual to join our strategy team. As a strategist you’re naturally 10 steps ahead and a constant evaluator who is always looking for ways to improve on the idea, the execution, or both.

Our ideal candidate embraces the challenges of marketing and business, is excited to learn about our clients’ industries, markets, and audiences and can do this as part of a team as well as independently. We are looking for an individual that’s been down a few roads before and around a few blocks, bringing experience and depth to the team.

Tell us more about what makes you the right person for a Strategist role at zag creative. Forward your resume to Trina Danis, VP Creative Services at trina@zagcreative.ca. Short listed applicants will be contacted for interviews.

*This position has been filled.

Office Space for Fort McMurray Evacuees

Posted on May 6, 2016 by

Our hearts are broken for all of those affected by the Fort McMurray fires, and we want to offer up some help.

If you’re a small business that has been evacuated from the city and need a place to get some work done, we’re offering up some of our space. We have two offices and a boardroom that we’re willing to provide free of charge until the end of July.

The offices are furnished with a desk and chair, and the boardroom has a table and a few chairs. You’ll also have access to Wi-Fi and a few other supplies to help you get your business done during these very hard times.

To learn more or start setting up with us, please send an email that includes your contact information and what you are looking for to info@zagcreative.ca.

| May 5 | News
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