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Getting people to buy a new perfume online without smelling it first: that’s the challenge l’Oréal was faced with as a result of the confinement. Using sound, l’Oréal has succeeded in conveying the idea that its men’s perfume rises the body’s temperature. Sound is becoming a huge playground, an increasingly relevant medium.

A format that connects and engages

A new type of social platform centred on voice conversations emerges. Whether through podcasts or apps, these environments often offer a more intimate setting, conducive to discussion and coming together. It’s very addictive!

While screen time is saturated, podcasts use a sense that has yet to be exploited: hearing. Consumers log in for active entertainment and to engage their spirit.

After the battle of images, it’s time for the battle of sound!

According to a study by eMarketer, the podcast media market (in the US) will be worth over $1 billionin 2021. This represents a 10x growth from 2015 to 2021!

The sector is booming: in June 2021, Spotify unveiled its new discussion platform, Greenroom, a direct competitor to Clubhouse.

Quebecers are also all ears

Podcasts are also anchored in Quebecers lives. According to the MTM, one francophone out of six regularly listens to podcasts. Three out of ten listeners say they get their podcasts from YouTube and Spotify.


Deemed to be too intrusive, advertising cookies will disappear from Google in early 2022. These “chips,” which track your online activity in order to send you targeted ads adapted to your behaviours, will be exorcized. The big digital players, once so eager to know as much about you as possible, now want to show you a blank slate . . . while still collecting information about you without, however, necessarily sharing it with advertisers.

But this is easier said than done. For lack of a viable alternative, Google Chrome has just announced that the abandonment of trackers (initially scheduled for early 2022) will not take place before mid-2023!

A flawed model

How personal information is handled by digital players has been a concern for several years. In 2018, there was the Facebook scandal: Cambridge Analytica revealed that certain practices lacked a framework. Since then, several rules have been adopted to limit the use of personal data.

Apple has even used this to spearhead its own initiative. Since February 2021, the company allows users to block the IDFA (Identifier for Advertisers) during the IOS 14.5 update. The announcement caused some panic among app editors, who saw their ability to monetize their ad inventory go down.

Consumers are not against data collection

Although it’s not perfect, it’s not a complete failure either.
According to an American study, a significant number of adults who updated their operating system to IOS 14.5 were willing to allow social and commercial apps to track and share their data:

  • 47 % of them would agree to Facebook doing this;
  • 36 % said they would opt for data tracking and sharing by TikTok;
  • 44% would let Nike track and share their data.

It just goes to show that the more things change, the more they stay the same!


July is right around the corner, as is moving season! Why not take the opportunity to breathe new life into your out-dated furniture and items? The second-hand market is increasingly valued for obvious economic reasons, as well as for environmental ones. The circular economy is even considered a performance indicator for Quebec’s green economy. Nationally, 2,4 billion objects find a new taker each year, for a market estimated at 27 billion $/year!


of Canadians participate in second-hand trade every year!

Source: Kijiji Index Report, 2019 (latest data available)

A juicy market for businesses!

The excitement (and commercial opportunities) is such that large brands are positioning themselves on the market. The goal: to get the windfall for this sector, which was long monopolized by online resell specialists such as Kijiji.

As such, IKEA opened its first second-hand store, which recovers and reconditions damaged items. The banner also offers the possibility to trade in your old furniture for an in-store credit.

The fashion industry digs it!

Increasingly snubbed by consumers as a result of its impact on the environment, the fashion industry is also making the shift. Thrift shops are the new shopping destination, and ready-to-wear brands (Patagonia, H&M, Simons) are joining in the movement. But the most significant change is happening online. The start-up Vinted, a Lithuanian second-hand online fashion shop that was a huge hit in Europe, is now foraying into Canada.

Get ready to take stock and declutter your closet!


During the pandemic, the furniture market has proven to be resilient, driven by the real estate boom, the reorganizing of homes to accommodate teleworking, and the saving of the leisure budget for later.


The growth in sales of furniture and home accessories stores in Quebec over the past 12 months!

Source: Statistique Canada. Retail sales by province and territory, April 2020 to March 2021 vs same period last year

Made-in-Quebec furniture holding its own next to international giants
If, in the past, the industry was shaken by furniture outsourcing and importation for a low cost, the manufacturers who managed to get through the storm are reaping the rewards of their efforts.
And we could even say that the wheel is still turning!

  • Ottawa’s recent surtax on Asian upholstery, which caused the government to be accused of unfair competition, has led to a renewed interest in local manufacturing;
  • Quebec brands are shining more and more beyond our borders.

The furniture industry is doing so well that certain sectors, such as woodworking, are facing a labour shortage.

While several manufacturers have grown popular as a result of their high-end, and sometimes customized offering, general public furniture specialists also have the wind in their sails.

Bestar is a perfect example of this success (+30 % activity in 2020). The ready-to-assemble furniture company gobbled up its American competitor in 2020, before investing in expanding its Lac-Mégantic plant.

Even start-ups are faring well! Several entrepreneurs are dusting off the market with the goal of meeting the reality of young consumers: from Transformer table’s ultra-modular furniture, to Fulhaus’ premium furniture rental offering, to ready-to-play couches by Go Coconut. Look no further: the sofa of your dreams was no doubt Made in Québec!



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