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Building a Great Influencer Program

Building a Great Influencer Program

This summer I went to Vancouver to meet with the Canadian team of Telus Advocates. I’ve shared my love for Telus over the years but this experience was truly amazing. They flew in content creators from across the country to visit their Vancouver office, tour Telus Garden, create, eat, explore, and build relationships.

I’ve worked with heaps of brands but I truly admire the influencer program Telus has built over the years. Ok yes, I am a little bias because I chatted with the team before they created the program and shared my likes, dislikes, and brand experiences. They have set the bar high for what it means to work with a telecom company or a big brand. The experience (as an influencer) is tailored to each person’s style of content and audience.


In this post, I’m sharing a few of my tips for creating a great influencer program with Telus as my example. 

Build Relationships

The thing about being an influencer is that you’re usually sharing your real life, so when you work with a brand, it means authentically integrating their content into your own experience.

You have to get to know each other in order to learn what works and create opportunities that mutually benefit the relationship.

It’s cool when you work well together and even cooler when it becomes a friendship. I’ve worked with Telus for about 8 years now and we’re colleagues but also friends. I can text with jokes, links, or that odd time on the weekend when I broke break my phone. (Sorry!)

Since we’ve built a good working relationship, we all reach out whenever something cool comes up like an event, giveaway, or content idea.

 


Customize Content

It really sucks when you’re scrolling Instagram and you see a sponsored post that seems kinda generic, but then you see another Influencer say almost the same thing, then another, and god forbid another. It doesn’t show personality, it’s not that creative, and it’s boring. Everyone is different and creates content (hopefully) in their own style.

Your influencer crew should be talking in their own voice and sharing photos that look like their real life, not just an #ad.

Telus is really cool about knowing what each of us likes and letting us create our own stories. At the start of the year, we have a 1-on-1 meeting where go through content ideas for the year. Each influencer picks out the events and ideas that speak to them, and we plan around that.

This means everyone has a unique story to tell that integrates with their life. In the past, I have talked about Telus travel plans, tech giftsgreat coverage at the cottage, giving back, their use of VR, and more.


Get Together

I am amazed that this doesn’t happen more. Brands have groups of influencers, sharing content around the same #hashtag, often in the same city, but they never hang out. Bring your people together! It’s a great way to build relationships between client/influencer but also between the creators.

We like hanging out, taking photos together, meeting new people. It helps strengthen the team, give each other ideas, and the brand has an amazing opportunity to create original content.

#TeamTelus, Vancouver, influencers

(Some of) #TeamTelus 2018 in Vancouver!  


Give Where You Live

If you have a great team of people you like working with who are sending out good vibes and great content, why not use that power for good? Telus gives $45M a year communities across Canada and half a billion since 2000. This year at TELUS Days of Giving events 35K employees will be involved in 2,000 events across Canada.

In Vancouver, the Telus Advocates (us) and a bunch of Telus employees joined forces to pack 200 bags with weekend snacks for Backpack Buddies. This charity was started by two women to help fill the weekend hunger gap for Vancouver kids in need. We went around the room in a circuit with people doing different jobs to hustle through packing. It was a lot of fun and it brought us together. Love to see more of this from other brands. See more at #GiveWhereWeLive.

#teamtelus, Vancouver, casie stewart

We packed 200 bags for Backpack Buddies and Telus donated $10,000!


Ask Questions

If you’re building an influencer team or already have relationships, remember they’re good at what they do because they have experience. They work with multiple brands, agencies, timelines. You don’t need to get super specific but asking questions is a great idea. What do they like about other programs? Do they have ideas on how to make things better, faster, smoother? How could we use technology to tell stories in a different way? Asking questions helps you learn and when you learn you have more ideas, and everything gets better.

Telus Vancouver dinner and the day I first wore my fav dress.


Bring Them In

I love learning about a program while it’s still in development and giving feedback or sharing a related experience. I usually have a different perspective and turn it on its head.  Last year, Telus brought a few of us in to ask about a new program they’re thinking about and while we were in Vancouver we talked a lot about Telus programs and the future.  It’s great to hear about what the company is doing, planning, how you can work together.


Create

You know what all content creator influencer people have in common? They all like to make things, create things. A lot of them even like the camera. 😉 Make stuff with them!

Telus had each of into Telus Vancouver Studio (inside their building) to shoot some fun stuff on camera. They planned it out well, has scripts, full crew, and we each took turns for private studio time. It was fun and now they have a whole bunch of fresh-faced content.

Last year before Mother’s & Father’s Day Telus had a bunch of us come to the Toronto office and shoot us talking about gadgets & gift ideas. We also called our parents to ask about their favourite present we ever gave them. You will laugh at mine because I was born on Mother’s Day and like, what is a better gift than THAT!? 😜


Learn & Grow

Through building relationships, coming together, and asking questions, you learn a lot about people, marketing, and what works best. Your program should be agile and change with the times, the content, technology, the people. New feature on IG or app to make something cool, try it. Find a great new creator, reach out to them. Someone not posting as much as they used to bc they just aren’t really into it, cool no problem, work with that or move on.

You need to be constantly innovating or you will be left behind. Innovate or die.

Finally, this goes without saying at this point, if you’re working on all this stuff with someone or a group of people, you should pay them for their time and expertise.  It can be cash (cheques are good) or in-kind (must have great value) but please recognize the immensely unique perspective and value someone of this nature can bring to your program or organization.

Sidenote, Vancouver is really beautiful. Especially in the summer!

 


How to Build a Great Influencer Program

  1. Build Relationships
  2. Customize Content
  3. Get Together
  4. Give Where You Live
  5. Ask Questions 
  6. Bring Them In
  7. Create
  8. Learn & Grow
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I love working with Telus as you can tell from this post. Check out some of my other stories over the years here. 💚

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Portugal Pt. 1: What to Do in Lisbon

Portugal Pt. 1: What to Do in Lisbon

Portugal is amazing! My trip with Aeroplan this month was great and if you were following on social you’ll know because I posted heaps of photos!  The air was hot, the food was good, and I found inspiration in the bright colours and kind people. I took over 2,000 photos and kept notes during the trip. I did a bunch of research before I left and have been asked heaps about recommendations, so, I’ve broken down my trip into 5 posts based on things I did, which is only a fraction of what there is to do. Next trip I’ll rent a car and drive around to see the Algarve, Braga, Cascais, Coimbra, Aveiro (the Venice of Portugal), and the historic town of Óbidos.

I’d like to take a second to thank Telus for keeping me connected. I have an Easy Roam package on my plan where for the cost of a coffee & snack each day I could use the data of my Canadian plan without having to worry about roaming. It’s great to disconnect but for me, being able to still share my experience as it happens is part of the fun!

Links to other Portugal Posts are at the bottom and I’ll update as each is published! Obrigada!


What to Do In Lisbon

I arrived in Lisbon with a loose plan of what to do for the next 10 days. It was my first visiting and I’d been building a Pinterest board of the things to see and do for weeks. The city is so beautiful, bright coloured buildings fill the streets and the hills make it so picturesque. Make sure you wear comfortable shoes and be prepared to walk a lot.

When you arrive from the airport it can be a bit confusing, if you don’t want to Uber or taxi, there’s a green bus that will take you downtown to a variety of spots for a couple Euros (the ticket is good for 24 or 48 hours).


The main streets will present heaps of opportunities to dine on a patio, have wine, visit a museum, or go shopping. We found a great little store for clothes at a good price at the bottom of  Santa Justa Lift. I ended up getting a 2nd suitcase to bring home all the things I bought on this trip! You can go up the lift for a 360 view but there was a line so I didn’t bother (this is included in your Yellow Bus ticket, see below).

Yellow Bus Tours

For 20 Euros I got a 48-hour ticket for Yellow Bus Tours which allowed me to take 2 bus lines and the trolley unlimited for 2 days. This worked out really great because they have an audio guide on the bus that tells you all about the history and landmarks, it also saved me paying for Ubers to get to all the places I wanted to go.

Parque Eduardo VII

One of the great views from the bus tour is Parque Eduardo VII, the largest park in Lisbon. I would have loved to walk around the park. There’s some greenery that looks like a maze! The park is 26 hectares and in between Avenida da Liberdade and the Marquis of Pombal Square, right in the centre of the city.

casie stewart, portugal, travel blogger, lisbon, aeroplan, withaeroplan, travel

Belem

One route on the bus tour took me to Belem and Torre de Belém (Tower of Belem). It was built on the northern bank of the Tagus between 1514 and 1520 and in 1983 was classified by UNESCO as “Cultural Heritage of Humanity”.

There’s also a place in Belem called Pastéis de Belém, the original spot for Pastel da Nata (Portuguese egg tart), since 1837.  Be prepared to wait but sooo good! 

belem, casie stewart, portugal, travel blogger, lisbon, aeroplan, withaeroplan, travel

LX Factory

This is a really cool area with bars, restaurants and shopping. It’s great for photos and has heaps of street art. This was where I saw the most hipstery people in Lisbon. There was live music and really cool shipping container/bus things to check out.

Barrio Alto District

Grab a beer at a little store and walk around, it’s really busy here! (Also, you can drink in the streets!) There are heaps of little bars and restaurants. We had dinner in an alley at an Italian restaurant. I was also surprised by how many police and families were walking around late at night. Hold onto your stuff though, if you were going to get pickpocketed, this would be the place.

Park Bar, Lisbon

If you’re looking for a great view, Park Bar it’s a busy hot spot on top of a parking garage with wooden seats and drinks. The entrance is on a small side street but they will likely be people hanging out or checking Google Maps on their phones to get there. You’ll have to walk up a few flights of stairs but the view is amazing. Unfortunately, I didn’t get there before sunset, the view in daylight is amazing.

Praça do Comércio (Yellow Square)

The Royal Palace used to be here before the Great Earthquake in 1755. The square is beside the Tagus River, it has a beautiful archway (Rua Augusta Arch) and a bronze statue of Joseph I of Portugal (1750 – 1777)  (King of Portugal during the earthquake).

Time Out Market

This is a HUGE market with all kinds of different food. It’s really busy at night with people eating and drinking. It’s right across from the train station if you want to get to Sintra, Cascais, or Praia De Carcavelos (beach).  I stayed at a great Airbnb just behind the market with a great host who showed me how to navigate the train station. If you haven’t used Airbnb yet, visit this link to get $45 CAD off your first stay.

time our market, lisbon, casie stewart, portugal, travel blogger, lisbon, aeroplan, withaeroplan, travel


Hope you enjoyed my photos and recommendations.

Check out my other posts about Portugal below! 

Casie Stewart: Guide to Portugal

  1. Portugal Pt. 1: What to Do in Lisbon
  2. Portugal Pt. 2: Sintra & Pena Palace
  3. Portugal Pt 3: Porto (Coming Soon!)
  4. Portugal Pt. 4: Douro Valley (Coming Soon!)
  5. Portugal Pt 5: Highly Instagrammable Places to Photograph (Coming Soon!)

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This vacation was in partnership #withAeroplan. Earn miles and rewards by shopping at your fav spots (ex. Amazon) and redeem for travel almost anywhere in the world. I've been an Aeroplan member since I was 11 years old and love redeeming my miles to visit new & exciting destinations. Check out aeroplan.com!Aeroplan Logo
 

The Praries: Ford EcoSport Cross-Canada Tour

The Praries: Ford EcoSport Cross-Canada Tour

This year for Canada Day weekend I was part of the Ford EcoSport cross Canada road trip with Ford Canada. My friend April and I were Leg 14 of the adventure and driving from Regina to Medicine Hat, SK and finishing in Calgary Alerta. It was both our first time in Regina and we had heaps of fun along the adventure. Thank you Ford Canada for this experience! Scroll down to see what we got up to along the way.


The Ford Eco Sport Tour involves 14 different content creators each driving the exact same Ford Eco Sport for a relay across the country. When I first received the email I was so excited and even more so that I got to bring a friend! I’d been wanting to go on a trip with April since that great weekend we spent glamping up north a few years back.

We started in Regina, SK and it was the first time there for the both of us. We arrived late afternoon and checked into Hotel Saskatchewan, an extremely elegant hotel. Ford hooked us up with a 2 room suite and it was perfect! The hotel offered great views of the city, was walking distance to restaurants and bars, it had a nice gym and a hot tub too. We drove around and made use of the SYNC® 3 with Apple CarPlay™ and FordPass Wifi HotSpot.

Instead of doing typical tourist stuff on our road trip, April and I made a point to stop at different vintage and second-hand stores across the two provinces. We love to shop! I’ve always found that shops in small towns are where you really find the gems. Our first stop was T&A Vinyl & Fashion and the owner was so cool. We shopped the vintage finds/records and he gave us pins, stickers, and a whole bunch of tips for things to do along our journey.

After a busy day of travelling and some shopping, we were ready for relaxation. Instead of going out we ordered room service from the incredible kitchen at Hotel Saskatchewan and pigged out in our rooms wearing our robes.

In the morning, we woke up pretty early (with the time difference) which it earned us time to hit the gym, have a coffee, and be on the road by 9am. Our goal was to do as much driving in the early part of the day as e could so we had some time at our next destination, The Resort at Cypress Hills. The car was great to drive and features like SYNC and wifi kept us on track and connected the whole time.

We had no shortage of great places to stop along the way. A lot of the drive looked the same with wide open Canola fields of yellow, green grass, and blue skies. We sang along to 90s on 9 on Sirius XM and stopped for photos and shopping along the way. It was really fun. As we turned off the Trans-Canada highway we came across a cute stop with a goat farm. So cute. Always stop for baby goats!

It was just about dinner when we arrived to our room at Cypress Hill Resort, a nice resort in the middle of a provincial park. We had a great dinner and turned in early to watch TV in our beds. We’re a real wild bunch! haha.

It was Canada Day when we woke up on Sunday so we both wore red and hit the road for the final leg of the trip to Calgary. It’s amazing how wide and flat the Prairies are. Really makes you appreciate how big and beautiful Canda is. Especially on Canada day! 🇨🇦

We made a few stops along the way including a Sunday market. We talked to shopkeepers whoever we stopped and people asked about the Ford Eco Sport wherever we went.


Sunday night we stayed at my fav spot in Calgary, Hotel Arts. I filmed this video there with Tourism Calgary a couple years back. We had a great dinner at Yellow Door Bistro inside the hotel and watched the Canada Day day festivities from the balcony.

Althouth we were on a self-guided adventure,  we had Denis who worked with Ford to drive across Canada to make sure each participant was a-ok along the journey. He also put gas in the car overnight so we were ready to roll in the morning. Thanks Denis! 

Overall the Ford Eco Sport was a great car to drive. It’s comfortable, good on gas, nice sound system, and my fav feature was the automatic windshield wipers. It didn’t rain much but when it did, they started up themselves!

Check out @FordCanada on Instagram for some of the other people who were part of the relay. It was such a  cool experience to be part of and to explore a new part of Canada.

Thank you Ford Canada! 

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Sassoon Style: Summer Wedding Season

Sassoon Style: Summer Wedding Season

Last week I stopped by Sassoon Toronto for my regular trim. My hair is lower maintenance since I opted for highlights last month instead of full bleach & tone. I really like what’s going on with my two-tone hair, it’s still blonde, has some texture, and is my natural colour at the back.

For my touch-up cuts in between colour, I’ve been seeing Tricia for a quick trim. She usually does a few snips while the hair is wet, then does scissor-over-comb (SOC) while my hair is dry to finish off the look. It’s amazing how a quick trim makes you feel so refreshed

Summer Wedding Hair Tips from Sassoon Toronto

I love summer and wedding season is the perfect chance to get all dolled up. I would wear this dress to every wedding this summer, it makes me feel great and always gets compliments. It’s my ‘feel good’ dress of Summer 2018! I chatted with Tricia about the perfect summer wedding hair and got a few tips from Sassoon Salon’s creative directors Lorraine McAndrew and Wesley Hanlon.

Keep it fresh
Tricia’s reco is to get a fresh haircut/trim/colour touch-up one week before the big day. If you have short hair like me, opt for a blow-dry on the day of. A professional just has the magic touch to give your hair some OOMPH.

Hot Tip: For added shine ask for a personalized in-salon Kerastase Fusio-Dose treatment.

 “Shine is key for ensuring your hair looks healthy from every angle,”
– Lorraine McAndrew, Sassoon Salon senior creative director

Styling Requirements
If you’re going for a braid or pretty up-do, your hair should be clean, but DO NOT wash it the day of the event. Wash the night before to keep your hair’s natural oils intact, you’ll be able to count those curls, waves, or up-dos holding better and looking great in photos.

Less is more
Want to look modern and elegant? Keep it simple, don’t over style!

Wedding Day Tool Kit
I always carry a small bag with a few beauty must-haves for big events or a wedding. I love Dior or Mac lipstick, Hello Flawless Powder by Benefit, bobby pins, and tiny rubber elastics. If you’re rocking a fancy hairstyle that took some work, pop Sebastian Shaper Plus mini hairspray in your bag.

SIDE NOTE – The team at Sassoon Salon are so great. I’ve been going there for almost 2 years now and I look forward to every visit. I spend half the time laughing and talking like we’re old friends. If you’re looking for a new look or someone to really take care of your hair, I highly recommend making an appointment.


Hope you had an amazing weekend. Here’s to a great week!

Sending you Sunshine!

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Fill Up for the Weekend + Be Safe Out There

Fill Up for the Weekend + Be Safe Out There

This weekend we’re heading to the cottage and I couldn’t be happier. The past few weekends I’ve had a bit of travel in Ontario and out west. I can’t wait to have a few days to recharge my batteries, nothing is quite as relaxing at a few days up at the cottage. We usually stop to fill up the car on the way and our fav place is the Husky Station near Bradford for the very best samosas, snacks, and of course gas.


When Husky reached out to me about their latest campaign I replied right away about the cottage drive but what I learned in the process is how many people actually get gas and don’t pay for it. As if! Doing that never crossed my mind but in my research, I found out it happens more than you know. In May this year, new legislation passed in Alberta to protect gas and convenience store workers after multiple deaths.

“The number of fuel thefts in our province would surprise people at how high it is and occasionally a worker is injured or killed either because a dash-and-gas is happening and they’re accidentally involved or because they maybe tried to chase someone,” – Alberta Labour MinisterLabour Minister Christina Gray 

Last year in Toronto, a man was charged with 2nd-degree murder after dragging a gas attendant 78 metres, when he drove away trying to escape a $112 tab. He didn’t even know he had killed a man until a couple days later! Gives me chills. With gas prices on the rise, I looked up how common gas fraud is in North America and it’s apparently ‘alive and well‘ (according to NASAA in USA) with major gas brands stating warnings right on their websites.


In order to protect their employees, Husky implemented a pay-at-the-pump policy for all locations, including the 110 locations in Ontario. Husky is one of the only stations in the province to implement this mandate.

“You hear tragic stories of employees trying to stop a gas theft and getting hurt, or even killed, and you often wonder if this could happen to you. Even though we aren’t supposed to try to stop these incidents, prepay ensures there is no dispute at the pump and helps me get home to my family at the end of every shift.” – Mike, Husky employee in St. Catherines

If you live downtown, you’re probably used to paying at the pump, but over the past month, I drove in Muskoka, Regina, and heaps of little towns where it’s not mandatory to pay before filling up. This weekend we had conversations with so many great staff members at gas stops through the Prairies and I hate thinking how this could happen to them.

Husky Energy Launches Pay before you Pump Awareness Campaign

Husky Energy believes having customers pre-pay will minimize risks to staff. Since implementation in BC, the rate of gas-and-dash deaths has decreased to zero.

I wonder when other gas companies will make this mandatory?


FYI if you go to the Husky on the 400 near Bradford, highly recommend the lamb or vegetarian samosas + plum sauce.

P.S. GAS PRO TIP – Next time you are getting gas, look on the gas handle for a little latch that will hold it handle in the ‘pumping gas position’ (or use the gas cap) and you won’t have to hold it with your hand. 😊⛽️

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This post is sponsored by Husky but the message is my own. I read a lot before writing this and I wonder how long it will take this to be mandatory at all gas stations.

Portugal: Europe’s Hottest Destination for 2018

Portugal: Europe’s  Hottest Destination for 2018

I’ve always dreamed of summer in Europe and although I’ve travelled to heaps of countries, I’ve never done a Euro trip. I KNOW! Well, ladies and gentlemen, the time has come. As part of my ongoing partnership with Aeroplan, tomorrow I’m heading to PORTUGAL. We leave mid-month and we’re back on the 30th.  Have I said I’m excited, yet?

I was originally heading to Paris with Sean but that trip is a little delayed and I’m so glad this worked out. It’s a great feeling to text your friend and say ‘hey want to come to Europe this summer?’. Ahhhhh pinch me, it’s times like this I’m like omg, this is my life!

I am so excited. Portugal is the hottest spot to go this summer, just check your Facebook feed or of your fav online celebs and they’re all checking in to Lisboa, Porto, Sintra, and beautiful coastal beaches.

Yesterday I was reading this article on W Magazine and it’s one of many about how Portugal is THE SPOT to be. We’ve planned out most of the adventure but I’ve left a few days up in the air to figure out as we go. I love not having a plan and the freedom to make things up as we learn more about secret beaches, hidden hideaways, and locals only spots.


If you have any food & drink recommendations, family, friends, hotels, Airbnb, vacation properties, restaurant owner friends, anything, PLEASE COMMENT.

We have a Google doc and Slack set up to manage everything (yes, we are nerds) so I will add all of your suggestions.



So far we’re arriving in Lisbon, going to Sintra, then to Porto, we’ve got a few days with no plan, then back to Lisbon before coming home. We’re gone for almost 2 weeks. It is going to be so hot and I can’t wait.

Sintra, Portugal – we’re staying in this great city for a night!


If you haven’t checked out the new Aeroplan, I suggest popping over to aeroplan.com. They’ve got deals on getaways, vacation packages, and more. You can also earn Miles at Amazon, Costco, and heaps of other online shopping spots. I’ve had an Aeroplan credit card for years and love racking up those rewards.

Thank you Aeroplan for making this dream come true! Follow along all our posts tagged #withAeroplan. I’m so excited!

 


Over the holidays this year took mum back to New Zealand for a month with Aeroplan and it was such a  great adventure. Watch this video we made w/ 1188 before our vacation.

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I’m Nominated for the 2018 Premier’s Awards!

I’m Nominated for the 2018 Premier’s Awards!

Hello! If you’ve been following my IG or Stories the last few days, I’ve been all over the place. I spent 4 days driving from Regina to Calgary on a road trip w/ Ford Canada, then an overnight glamping trip with Up Cannabis. Both trips were very different and incredibly fun. I will share more about those soon but now I have a little announcement! 

A couple weeks ago I received an email from my college asking to have an in-person meeting. Since I was travelling we had a call and it was then learned, I’ve been chosen as the Creative Arts nominee for the 2018 Premier’s Awards! Yes, ME! 

The awards celebrate Ontario’s outstanding college graduates and winners are presented awards at a gala in November. More specifically, The Premier’s Awards honour the important social and economic contribution that college graduates make to Ontario and throughout the world. The awards were launched in 1992 and are administered by Colleges Ontario.

Last week my nomination was officially submitted and today it’s online. Past winners in my category have included an internationally acclaimed TV director, top chefs, leading playwrights, and an Academy Award-winning animator. It’s a pretty broad category and more than anything, I’m honoured to be nominated. 😃

Check out my photo on the Conestoga College website here!

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Having My Moment

Having My Moment

Last weekend I had the opportunity to spend a dreamy weekend driving around in a 2017 Porsche Boxster GTS. This car is INCREDIBlE. I drove all over the place, taking friends to run errands, back and forth to get groceries, from Scarborough to the far West, and all over downtown. I’ve never owned a car and I’ve joked since I was a kid that my first car would be a Porsche, well, there’s still time!

Suits me, right?


Cool thing about this car is that the engine is right behind the 2 seats so there are two trunks, front and back. You can fit groceries and your weekend bag but only one friend at a time, it’s perfect. 😜I took Embot around for a drive listening to music and felt like the coolest step-mama ever.

It’s got amazing handling for city or highway. It is also VERY fast, not that I was speeding ever at all. The roof is fully automatic and pretty fast, you can put it down to take the top off while stopped at a traffic light. It’s pretty good on gas but you have to put premium, however nothing compares to the beautiful German engineering of a Porsche. My dad was v jealous! casie stewart, porsche canada, porsche, boxter gts, carrera, toronto, influencer, blogger


Porsche is celebrating 70 Years, (HBD!), and tonight they’re hosting an event. I would love to work on this relationship so I can drive more and more cars for the media fleet, that way, when I buy my very own, I really know what I want! Ha! I’m serious. They gave a few media peeps the opportunity to drive cars. I booked this drop top baby a few months ago and waited patiently for the day I could pick it up.

Thank you Porsche Canada! ILYYYYYY!

As I sadly returned the Boxter, I saw this BRIGHT yellow Carrera and thought, that would look good on me! Maybe next time?!

casie stewart, porsche canada, porsche, boxter gts, carrera, toronto, influencer, blogger

With love,

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Disclosure: Porsche Canada gave me the car to test drive for the weekend but I said that already!

Exciting Times Ahead: Biome Grow & Cannabis Marketing

Exciting Times Ahead: Biome Grow & Cannabis Marketing

Last week some exciting family news hit the Global Newswire! About a year ago, the team at Occupied VR came up with an idea for a virtual reality cannabis dispensary. Well FF► to last week, we announced that Weed VR has been acquired by licenced cannabis producer Biome Grow.  Check out the news release here.

If you’re reading this and are thinking ‘what is Weed VR, I want to try it“. Email me casie@weedvr.co or send me a DM on any social platform and we’ll hook you up. Comments are open on this post if you have questions.

Essentially, it’s a virtual retail dispensary and soon to be the largest library of 3D cannabis strains for educational purposes.


It’s a really exciting time to be in this business. I’ve seen some really creative marketing, events, and promotional products. The striped metal grinder card and papers in the top photo are from Van Der Pop, a female-focused Cannabis brand. They send a cool package a couple months ago.  Next week I’m going glamping with UP Cannabis near Blue Mountain with a bunch of media peeps. (UP is the cannabis company partially owned by the Tragically Hip!)

up cannabis, casie stewart, cannabis marketing, weedvr, weed vr, marijuana marketing

This is the cool event invite I got from UP Cannabis! So creative! When you slid the top of the wooden box open the red plastic piece says ‘roll with us’. Love it.


This stage of the industry kinda reminds me of early days of social media. Back when my friends would make fun of me for staying home to work on my ‘blog’ or going to so many ‘TweetUps‘ with my ‘internet friends‘. That was a really special time, the friends I made and relationships I built back then will last a lifetime. The things I learned from being early stage, a pioneer, are priceless.

Being at the start of something new takes risk, you have to be agile and innovative. I’m working on Weed VR PR and it’s new, a bit nervewracking, but exciting.  Nervous/excited is my favourite feeling. I’m really looking forward to the next few months building this brand w/ Biome Grow.

How many times did I say excited in this post? haha!

HUZZAHHHHHHHH!

casie stewart

 

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#ShareLove Pride 2018! Video + Parade w/ Telus!

#ShareLove Pride 2018! Video + Parade w/ Telus!

A couple weeks ago I was invited to Telus Toronto to share some of my Pride memories. I’ve been going to the parade since I was a teenager. Dad took my sister for our first time when we were in high school. It’s been a place for positive self-expression, to celebrate, to join friends for their first Pride after coming out, or to remember friends who have past. Every year we get together to share love, joy, and friendship while dancing in the street together.




Thank you, Telus for having me in to share what PRIDE means to me. I am so proud and glad to work with a company that supports diversity, LGBTQ, and gives back in communities across the country.  This weekend I’ll be walking in the parade with Telus. I love being there and feeling the happy energy flying all around.

Sending you sunshine and I hope to see some of you at PRIDE!

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Local Ladies – Documentary

Local Ladies – Documentary

This weekend I was invited to sit down with Katie and Meghan, who created Local Ladies, a series all about telling women’s stories in the community.

Over the past three years, they’ve interviewed women and screened the short films to raise funds for Women in Crisis. I was interviewed for a feature documentary they will be screening in September.

Some of the other Local Ladies!


The Local Ladies mission is to shine a light on as many incredible women in the community as possible through interviews, collaboration videos, and *soon* a podcast.

Check out their Press for Progress video they created for International Women’s Day 2018. The short film was then screened on March 8th at the Princess Twin in Uptown Waterloo.


The studio had great lighting so I took a bajillion selfies. I am also obsessed with this bright emoji yellow and will be wearing it from here on in. 😆

I’ll keep you posted on the premiere screening and other things surrounding the film! Find them on Twitter @LocalLadies.


Thank you, Katie and Meghan, for the kind words and reaching out to include me in this great project. Happy to share my story and hopefully inspire some Local Ladies along the way! 

 

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Work Work, Blog Work, WeWork, Werk!

Work Work, Blog Work, WeWork, Werk!

Hi! I am at WeWork visiting Raymi and the office is SO COOL. It’s a co-working space and there are heaps of big and small businesses around and freelance people working in the common areas. It’s super bright and well designed to inspire creativity. I love it!

Of course, we had a little photoshoot!

I wore this dress when I was in Vancouver and honestly, I would wear it every damn day. It’s from H&M and I get so many compliments on it! I am on the hunt for more yellow in my wardrobe. It’s so sunshiney and bright! ☀️🍋💛

Tonight I’m going to to the cinesphere at Ontario Place, then to a BBQ w/ Schneiders. I’m surprising her so I hope she likes it! This weekend we’re heading up to the cottage for a few days. After all the work we’ve done over the last few months, we can finally relax and enjoy it! I’m looking forward to sitting on the dock, reading, and soaking up the sun.

Remember to wear sunscreen! 

P.S. Raymi just updated her blog and she is very happy right now go read it! It’s way longer than this haha. raymitheminx.com

She has a real job now at Full Stack Resources if you ever need some dev work done!

 

 

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Bunz Trade For a Portrait

Bunz Trade For a Portrait

Last month I met up with my friend Charmaine after she posted on Bunz Trading Zone about wanting a Fitbit. I’ve been going to FitBit media events for years (Love my new Versa!) so I have a couple. Bunz Trading Zone started out at Bumz a couple years ago as a small group for local trades, without the exchange of money. It’s grown to thousands of members with different groups for friending, makeup, yoga, housing, and jobs. Charmaine asked what I was ISO (in search of) and knowing she is a great photographer, I asked her to take my photo.

She took a couple of me on digital and film and just had a couple developed! I was just at the office in my regular clothes so it wasn’t a full-on photoshoot, more like a walk & talk hang w/ photos. Great trade if you ask me! 

Thank you, Charmaine!
Check out her IG here.

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What a Wonderful World

What a Wonderful World

Sean was up cleaning up tree branches at 6 am today! I slept until 7:30, I’ve always been a morning person. 😊☀️💛 There were a few huge piles of tree branches and trunks to cleanup and we were almost done at 10am. Hustle! 🌳🌲🌳🌲 I love being up here so much. The boat is in the water and it’s beautiful out today. 🚤

Waking up early here is great because you get heaps done and then can chill the rest of the day. There’s a chipmunk creepin up a tree behind me, they are cute but can be annoying. You do not want the little buggers in the house!

I love sitting on the dock and writing things down. The lake and nature are inspiring and if I don’t write things down I always forget. 💭

Make the most of the weekend. Do something for yourself. 💕

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About Casie Stewart

Casie Stewart is a Canadian writer, director, and entrepreneur. She’s an award-winning content creator and expert in digital. During her decade-long career in media, she’s been named Canadian Screen Award Winner (Voice Pioneer), Best Travel Blog, and Top 30 Lifestyle Blogs in Canada. Casie has been a keynote speaker at SXSW, NXNE, TEDx, and spoken at YouTube Canada and the United Nations of Canada. She lives in Toronto with her boyfriend and loves summer weekends at the cottage when she’s not travelling around the world.

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