The Globe brings on EQ3 for design program

Designing Canada is a new ongoing program and will roll out across print, digital and events.

This past weekend, The Globe and Mail announced Designing Canada in partnership with EQ3, a new editorial feature highlighting the best in Canadian residential architecture, interiors and housewares for 2019.

The program will showcase the top-three projects across three design categories, plus a student category. A jury composed of influential members of the Canadian design community will nominate projects they feel represent the best in Canadian design, and The Globe‘s editorial staff will narrow down the top-three in each category. In January, the winning designers and projects will be profiled.

This marks the first titling sponsorship for The Globe. Maryam Siddiqi, lifestyle managing editor for The Globe, tells MiC the program will be ongoing, joining its other annual packages, Hidden Canada (travel), Canada’s Best Dressed (fashion) and Canada’s Kitchen (food). “It’s a chance for us to give recognition to emerging places and or personalities across the country, an opportunity to dig deeper into the talent in these industries and share them with our readers.”

Mark Letain, president of EQ3, says the partnership with The Globe is a strong PR opportunity for EQ3, as it helps the brand drive a message and get its core values out there. “We haven’t done the best job in telling our story about who we are and giving the message we want to give,” he says. “A lot of companies say they’re made in Canada or are a Canadian company. But for us, we can say that most of what we make, we make in Canada.” He says there are some exceptions – for example, with handcrafted rugs, the best come out of India or Afghanistan – but overall he believes EQ3 has a very Canadian mindset, and it’s time to translate that into a Canadian image.

In fact, he says, this coming year its brand positioning is going to revolve around the headline “Canadian by Design.” With that, he says, the alignment with The Globe seems natural. “It really is the preeminent newspaper in Canada,” he says.

But also, as a company that serves as a retailer and designer, he says The Globe has a designer-friendly edge. “I find it’s been a little more avant-garde in the way they do things, and they certainly pay a lot of attention to design. I consider them a design-oriented paper.”

The launch announcement took place last weekend, and in January the comprehensive print package profiling the 10 finalists and projects will debut. The package will also be given a digital presentation. In addition, The Globe will program a day of content at Toronto’s Interior Design Show in January. EQ3 will host a reception with some of the recognized designers at DesignTO. A marketing campaign to promote the program will launch the week of Oct. 28 in The Globe‘s online and print packages.

Beyond the name in the title, EQ3 is not being integrated into the editorial content, and Siddiqi confirmed that the brand does not have approval over the content. However, its senior director of brand development, Nils Vik, will serve as a jury member.