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Client Overview

First Foundation is an award-winning insurance and mortgage brokerage on a mission to help Canadians own their homes, grow their wealth, and protect their loved ones.

As one of our longest-standing clients, we’ve had the privilege to work with First Foundation for over a decade and this case study highlights one of our favourite collaborative projects.

The Challenge

In 2015, First Foundation was approached by a client looking for layoff insurance. Their brokers had never even heard of this kind of protection, but quickly realized its potential to be of real help to Albertans struggling with the recession. The company asked Bluetrain to create a special campaign that would:

  • Raise awareness about this brand-new product
  • Drive relevant traffic to online assets
  • Generate leads for First Foundation in the form of insurance application submissions

Our Solution

Bluetrain proposed a multi-channel campaign that would seek to inform the public about this new insurance product, educate them about how it worked, and inspire people to learn more or submit an application.  

The great team at Bluetrain helped First Foundation execute its most successful awareness campaign ever. In just a few short days they were instrumental in obtaining media coverage from TV, radio, and print outlets including CTV, CBC, the Edmonton Journal, Calgary Herald, Corus Radio, and more. In addition, they were able to quickly develop and deploy web assets to educate and inform our audience, capture leads, and ensure that those leads got into our sales funnel in a manageable way. Their digital marketing expertise helped us drive ‘layoff insurance’ to the top of search engine rankings and allowed us to set up our social advertising campaign for results…

Gordon McCallum, President, First Foundation

Gordon McCallum
President, First Foundation


of all new business is being generated by online efforts


landing page conversion rate for layoff insurance


layoff insurance leads over a three month campaign

How Did We Do It?

First, we built both a product page and campaign landing page so that visitors could quickly learn more about layoff insurance and easily contact First Foundation. As the campaign wore on, we continued A/B testing the landing page and used the incoming data to make small but powerful changes that would help increase form submissions.

Paid Search traffic to First Foundation’s layoff insurance landing page now has a 15.6% conversion rate (compared to a Google AdWords industry average  of just 2.7%).

Next, we encouraged First Foundation to create an educational blog post about how layoff insurance could bring peace of mind to Albertans worried about losing their jobs.
We then converted this blog post into a press release and submitted to Alberta media; the press release was promptly picked up by several news outlets including CTV, the CBC, the Edmonton Journal, Calgary Herald, and Corus Radio.

From there, we created Facebook and Google ad campaigns that piggybacked off the success of the press release and helped spread the word about layoff insurance.

Finally, we ensured brand alignment by describing the product in similar terms across channels and by consolidating traffic to a single landing page.

Our Impact

In the end, this campaign generated 977 leads over a three month campaign! In fact, First Foundation received so much interest in response to campaign efforts that we were forced to temporarily turn off advertising for staff to catch-up.

Now that it is running again though, this campaign continues to bring in new leads every day.

The Long Game

Although layoff insurance was certainly one of the most successful campaigns that we have managed for First Foundation, we think it is also important to mention the success of First Foundation’s initial SEO program which launched in 2007 and helped the company increase site traffic by 1,780% in just two years.

By 2013, 50% of all new business was being generated by online efforts, and the company has maintained a strong reputation for dispensing excellent personal financial advice on their award-winning blog.

Learn how digital marketing can benefit your business.

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