Celebrating One Year of Canada’s Heart is Calling

Posted January 09, 2024

Exactly one year ago, we unveiled Manitoba’s refreshed destination brand to the world.

Today, the brand continues to inspire travellers and unite Manitoba’s tourism experiences through compelling campaigns and engaging social content.

“Our refreshed brand has resonated with locals and travellers, and we are continuing to see a positive response from audiences around the globe,” said Cody Chomiak, Travel Manitoba’s Vice-President of Marketing. “Both travellers and residents have shown their love for Manitoba by booking trips and engaging with us in a wide variety of ways.”

Travel to Manitoba is on the rise, noted Chomiak, with domestic visitor spending and visitation numbers exceeding those of 2019 levels. International travellers have been slower to return but all signs point to growth from international markets over the next two years.

Through UpHouse, Travel Manitoba’s marketing agency of record, we launched an impactful brand and a new series of English and French boulder campaign videos. “Boulders” are iconic bucket list experiences that keep Manitoba top of mind for potential national and international travellers.

Each brand video was translated into French and published to targeted Francophone audiences. Additional French advertising was purchased in La Liberte, on CKXL FM and digital billboards in French-speaking Winnipeg neighbourhoods.

Memorable Brand Moments

Last May, we shared Canada’s Heart is Calling at Rendez-vous Canada (RVC) in Québec City, where a captivating video was presented to over 1,600 attendees including travel buyers from the U.S., Canada, U.K., Germany, China, Japan, Australia, Mexico, France and Korea.

On the international stage, Canada’s Heart is Calling was a finalist in the World Media Awards among tourism giants Abu Dhabi, London and Wales in the category of Travel and Tourism.

“Being a finalist in a competition like World Media Awards shows how big of an impact Manitoba has on a global scale,”
said Colin Ferguson, President and CEO of Travel Manitoba. “We’re thrilled to be recognized on this level alongside such notable tourism destinations.”

The Canada’s Heart is Calling brand has also been recognized by the Content Marketing Awards, Hermes Awards, Communicator Awards, NYX Awards and the Ad Association of Winnipeg’s Signature Awards.

Alongside the launch of Canada’s Heart is Calling, we evolved Hunt Fish Manitoba to align with the refreshed provincial destination brand. Woven throughout the new Hunt Fish Manitoba advertising creative is the headline "When your heart needs wild" and tagline "Canada's Heart is Calling," forging a connection between Manitoba's extraordinary wilderness experiences and our deeply stirring tourism brand.

Our latest campaign efforts using the refreshed brand have targeted U.S. anglers who were unable to visit during the pandemic. Hunt Fish Manitoba’s new compelling creative showcases Manitoba as a world-class fishing destination, featuring fly-in, drive-to and ice fishing experiences.

Creative Collaboration and Local Partnerships

Throughout the year, we collaborated with many local partners and artists. From experiential marketing with Grape Labs to exclusive merchandise lines featuring local makers like Wilder Goods, LOT.ceramics and Patent 5 Distillery, our brand has become a collaborative canvas reflecting Manitoba's vibrant spirit.

Through UpHouse, Travel Manitoba worked with dozens of amazing local partners to bring the brand to life, including commercial video studio Enjoy Creative, graphic designer Jonato Dalayoan of 4two Design and film production studio Wookey Films. And you’ll have heard the talent of local musicians in the video advertising, including Boniface, JP Hoe, The Ripperz, Ila Barker, Yes We Mystic, Moonbell, Rob Knaggs and Begonia.

Over the last year, our merchandise line expanded with summer items and a truly Manitoban collaboration with 1882 Fruit-based Hot Sauces to rebrand their Honey Dill Hot Sauce. Launched just in time for the holiday season, the initial batch of hot sauce with the new look sold out within 48 hours and sales are still going strong. Travel Manitoba continues to sell Manitoba- and Hunt Fish MB-branded merchandise at the Visitor Information Centre at The Forks and online at shoptravelmb.ca with new items added seasonally.