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SDC Plaza St-Hubert

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A neighborhood based identity

We didn't invent anything. The story was already there. It was just a matter of putting the spotlight in the right place. Plaza St-Hubert is one of the most emblematic and atypical streets in Montreal. For a time, it was one of the city's luxury shopping hubs, but over the years it has become a magnificent melting pot of commerce and culture.   Tell me more

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St-Hubert
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Plaza St-Hubert is one of Montreal’s most iconic commercial streets. However, in recent years it has fallen out of favour with the general public. Research revealed that the Plaza suffers from negative bias, with shoppers focussing on the Plaza’s shortcomings and reducing its offer down to a selection of cheap, junky wedding shops. Recognizing this as an issue, the Plaza’s retailer association (SDC Plaza St-Hubert) gave Tux the mandate to create a campaign that could rekindle a sense of pride in the Plaza and drive people to shop there again.

The public’s perception of the Plaza over the years, combined with 3 years of construction and a global pandemic, have changed the way people shop at the Plaza. Instead of taking their time to explore the street, shoppers have developed the habit of taking quick trips to specific stores to buy what they need.

Tux quickly realized this issue was rooted in behaviour. In order to change people’s perception of the Plaza, we first had to change their shopping habits. That’s why we opted to create a content-driven ad campaign for the Plaza that aimed to stop shoppers on the street and encourage them to take a closer look at what was on offer. Specifically, the campaign content shone a spotlight on the Plaza’s lesser-known hidden gems and introduce shoppers to what is actually an unparalleled commercial and cultural destination. Where else could you find a street in Montreal where hip restaurants, a medieval boutique, an XXX cinema, plus Latin and African delis sit side by side?

We wanted shoppers to really see what this fascinating cultural melting pot is about by showcasing the Plaza’s true nature—a place filled with people, items, and stories that simply can’t be found on any other street in Montreal.

The campaign signature we developed was Juste sur la Plaza (Only at the Plaza), which came after we took our own journey to discover all the Plaza had to offer. Tux’s offices are located on the Plaza, which gave us ample opportunity to try out restaurants, speak to workers and shoppers, and get a real feel for this unique place. It didn’t take us long to realize the goal wasn’t to reinvent the Plaza, but rather focus on what’s already there. And that’s exactly what we did.

Creative deployment

We started with a series of posters that focused on different well-kept Plaza secrets. We hung these on large vacant storefront windows throughout the street to attract the attention of passersby and invite them to explore the Plaza a little more in depth. We took inspiration from what we found on the street itself and in storefronts to create the fonts, colours, and various visual elements used in the posters.

Creative deployment

Since there were more hidden Plaza gems than vacant storefronts, we created an additional set of posters that we printed, glued, and hung up ourselves in a series of wild postings—a way to honour the Plaza’s tradition of DIY innovation and resilience. We also developed social-media content that showcased these hidden gems and the store owners themselves, and installed various pieces around the neighbourhood directing shoppers to visit the street.

Today, the Plaza is home to Latin American grocery stores, hidden entertainment venues, medieval stores, cool new restaurants, bridal stores, a XXX movie theater, and a Tiki bar on the roof of a building that serves drinks containing nine ounces of alcohol with a flaming thing in the middle.

The Plaza is a place where graphic references are absolutely eclectic, where DIY is king, and resilience defines the spirit of the businesses. Even more so since the artery has had to deal with years of renovations and the reality of a pandemic. To pay homage to this street (which is ours, by the way, Tux's offices are located right in the middle of the Plaza), we simply wanted to take what was already there and show it off.

Credits

Strategy Mélissa Tucker-Gagné
Client Partners Annie Woang
Cécile Aubin
Creative Direction Joshua Lessard
Simon Chénier-Gauvreau
Copywriting Joshua Lessard
Artistic Direction Thierry Joannette Langevin
Graphic Design Thierry Joannette Langevin
Joanie Brisebois
Photography Alex Miglierina
Color-grading Lian Benoit
Motion Design Mathieu Rouland
Lochlan Doyle
Print Production Frédérique Bissonnet
JG Production
Video Production Alexandra Quesnel
Graphic Production Mateusz Markiewicz
Space Design Olivier Paré
Michèle Beauchamp-Roy
Executive Director, SDC Plaza St-Hubert Mike Parente

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