In March 2022, Matte PR was enlisted by direct-to-consumer fashion label Ahiri to orchestrate a comprehensive launch campaign. It included earned media relations, influencer gifting, wildposting, social media strategy, content and ads, and a pop-up shop with a launch event. The objective was to cultivate excitement around Ahiri’s inaugural collection and mark its official brand debut with flair.

Our challenge was to establish the brand as a favourite among top Canadian fashion editors and build a community, from scratch. We aimed to secure media coverage from influential writers in tier-one publications such as FASHION, ELLE Canada, The Kit and The Globe and Mail, and have Ahiri  prominently featured in round-ups alongside competitors.

The brand challenged us to execute an unforgettable gifting campaign, sharing press and influencer packages with influential names in a way that would truly wow them. We set out to captivate media and influencers with a stand-out gifting program unlike anything they’d received before.

Our objectives on the social media front were to articulate a distinctive brand voice, establish a unified visual identity, and create and implement content encouraging engagement and attracting new followers. Once the brand’s online community was established, our objective was to unite them at an in-person launch event, deepening their affinity with the brand. 




We did not yet have finished products to gift media and influencers. Our innovative solution to charm and surprise them? Debuting the collection on paper dolls created in the likeness of editors and influencers. Recipients could “try on” Ahiri’s FW collection on these paper dolls and select their favourite pieces to receive as gifts. 

In phase two, we dispatched their chosen collection items, timed to coincide with the brand’s e-commerce debut. In tandem, we distributed a press release to coincide with the brand’s official launch of its e-commerce platform. This triggered our fundamental media relations initiatives, encompassing media pitches, informal meetings with editors, and cultivating relationships between the designer, brand founders and the media. 

To achieve our social media objectives, we conducted a competitor analysis and built a strategy and defined the brand voice based on our findings. From there we executed the strategy, including ads, and began creating and posting content. We managed monthly batches of content on Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn, ensuring it was engaging and the brand made a splash during this integral phase. We also executed a community management strategy, interacting daily with the target audience to help build the brand’s following and engagement. 

The November launch event and pop-up were the final elements for driving hype and building a community. Matte PR secured the pop-up location, in the heart of Queen Street West, consulting on store design and logistics. We managed all invites, targeting journalists, editors, influencers and other players in the fashion industry.



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We smashed our media and influencer gifting campaign, securing 181 pieces of social media coverage, reaching 9,975,464. Ahiri’s paper dolls garnered repeated earned social media coverage, with many recipients posting multiple times and becoming brand evangelists. Our influencer and media campaign resulted in a standalone story on FASHION, published the day of the brand launch, a segment on The Marilyn Denis Show and coverage in the Globe and Mail Style Advisor.

Going above and beyond our media relations goals, we secured 38 pieces of media coverage with a reach of 35,010,027. Editors reported Ahiri was the most talked about brand of the season, and many covered it repeatedly. The Toronto-based brand has been featured in publications like ELLE Canada, The Globe & Mail, The Kit, The National Post, Chatelaine and VITA Daily.

Our social media strategy and content execution successfully built an engaged online community for the brand. From July to October 2022, Ahiri’s Instagram followers grew from zero to 1,404 over the fall season, and we garnered 714,862 impressions, 4,654 likes, and 1,070 post saves.

The launch event, hosted at the brand’s first physical pop-up shop, was a huge success with over 120 attendees, many of whom were top-tier fashion editors, journalists and major Canadian influencers. Editors, writers and stylists from The Globe & Mail, Cityline, The Marilyn Denis Show, FASHION, Chatelaine, and more were present during the event. 


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