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Associated Maritime Pharmacies Ltd. (AMP)

Brand & Banner Changeover

Associated Maritime Pharmacies Limited is a company owned by the MacIntyre and Buffet families in Nova Scotia and the McDonough and Barkhouse families in New Brunswick. Together, they own 12 pharmacy stores in both provinces. In the fall of 2012, they decided to move their membership from the Pharmasave retail banner to the Guardian retail banner owned by McKesson.


Studio 11 Creative Group has been the agency of record for AMP for nearly five years and before that did ongoing project work since we began eight years ago. They called upon us to join the internal team to counsel and support them in carrying out this special change management project. We were involved in the planning, strategy, execution, communications and ongoing evaluation of this large undertaking. 


We developed communications strategy for all of AMP stakeholders including their pharmacy patients, a marketing strategy to ensure their retail store traffic stayed stong or increased and a branding strategy to help publics understand the benefits of the Guardian banner. We did this for both New Brunswick and Nova Scotia stores and in the case of New Brunswick, ensured communication was done in both official languages. We also had to follow pharmacare regulations in both provinces.

Our tactics included a two-step direct mail campaign to patients, key messages to staff, ongoing face to face meetings, bagstuffers and buckslips, key messages to our neighbouring clinics, a complete communication plan with staff training around the Guardian new loyalty program and the loss of air miles, website communications and a long-term marketing strategy that featured a brand and visual identity change.


The project was completed on tight timelines and budget. Our customer traffic and patients remained virtually unchanged or increased in some stores. Staff and suppliers were also pleased with the transition which went seamlessly. But, most of all, the client was thrilled with the changeover and other independent drugstores came to us to help them with their changeover to the Guardian banner and brand.


Studio11 Creative Group
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