The Advertising Behind “The Weeknd”

The Weeknd has grown to be quite famous worldwide, with his new album, Starboy, breaking multiple records and topping charts. Learn more about his journey and how he became so successful with minimal advertising.


With “Starboy” becoming number 1 on charts in over 80 countries in less than 24 hours, it is safe to say that The Weeknd is back with another album with at least three songs on your playlist.  Abel Tesafey has won a total of 42 awards from 137 nominations – all in a span of 6 years. But how did Tesafey develop a strong personal brand in a hit-or-miss industry? Rather than focusing on traditional forms of advertising, the Weeknd used his personal brand strategically to grow his fan base astronomically.  It might actually shock you that the Weeknd’s first daytime appearance was only a few days ago on the Ellen Degeneres show.


“You mean ‘The Weekend’?”

When you first heard of The Weeknd, you probably spelt his stage name incorrectly…with the correct spelling of the word itself. At the beginning of his career in 2010, he posted tracks from his mix tapes without revealing his identity. On Reddit, he revealed that his stage name was created after running away from home with a friend one weekend once he dropped out of high school.  Combined with his dark and mysterious lyricism, fans were intrigued by The Weeknd’s personality and his smooth R&B vocals.


The Iconic Hair

The Weeknd was able to differentiate himself from other artists with not only his voice, but with his hairstyle as well.  Tesafey believed that if “[he] cut his hair, [he’d] look like everyone else. And that [was] just so boring to [him]”. His hair became a major part of his personal brand and has trended on Twitter and on Facebook a few times throughout his career.   Needless to say, his fans were quite shocked when the “Starboy” cover was unveiled.


He Declines Most of his Interviews

It is rare for The Weeknd to answer personal questions that could be used as bait on the cover of magazines. During his breakthrough, the Weeknd refused to meet with interviewers and would only give superficial responses via Twitter. Tesafey even admitted that his career is “going to be so long because I haven’t given people everything”.


An R&B Icon from Toronto

Regardless of where he is, Tesafey will always be a boy from Scarborough chasing after his dreams while overcoming obstacles alongside his immigrant mother. This year, he donated $50,000 towards an Ethiopic Studies program at the University of Toronto – a clear indicator that you can take a boy out of Toronto, but you can’t take the Toronto out of a boy.


By Vaisnavy Sivayoganathan


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Reinventing the Casey Neistat Brand

After 217 vlogs, Casey Neistat is saying goodbye to daily vlogging. He wants to reinvent his personal brand and make it stronger by changing the style and production of his videos. Learn more about his new journey and why the reason behind it all.



Like many other college/university students, I spend a majority of my free time watching videos on YouTube.  Watching Casey Neistat’s daily vlogs became a part of my daily routine, until he announced that he would no longer be vlogging daily.

Many of his viewers were left unhappy and questioned why he would be stopping when his YouTube channel was only growing. Casey gained 5.8 million subscribers in just 18 months of daily vlogging, with over 1 billion views on his channel. He is one of the most famous YouTubers because of his creative take on vlogging, showing how adventurous and authentic they were. As pictured on the right, Casey is seen snowboarding in the middle of Times Square.

On the other hand, a few of his viewers, like myself, understand why he is doing this. I already sensed this coming a few months back, as his vlogs were becoming quite repetitive and he was no longer being creative with them. Casey’s personal brand portrays himself as a passionate filmmaker that seeks out challenges and daily vlogs were no longer giving him that challenge. His personal brand is already well recognized by many companies and people worldwide, but he is still looking for opportunities to grow. In order to keep his personal brand relevant, he must change as he mentions that when YouTubers find a degree of success, they stop innovating creatively because they don’t want to change and jeopardize that success.


He mentions in his last vlog, that in order for him to grow, he must fully let go of daily vlogging. He will still be making high quality videos, but ones that will take more than just a day to produce. Casey saw this as an opportunity to reinvent the Casey Neistat brand and challenge himself to grab onto the next vine. He wants to use his personal brand to teach his audience more about the world and how they can make it better, as well as help their voices through technology. I look forward to his new videos, and if you’ve not already watched his latest one about Vietnam you should, it was really good!


Casey’s Vietnam Video:


By: Petrina Huang


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Why Women Enjoy Shopping but Most Men Don’t

There is no evidence to suggest that women shop more than men. It’s only that females enjoy shopping more than males do!


The stereotype of women, being as they are, shop more than men. But there’s actually no evidence that supports this statement! Female only enjoys shopping more than males.
In 2013, a study of 2,000 shoppers in UK found that men got bored of shopping within 26 minutes. However, women did not show any signs of fatigue for the next two hours!
But wait, why is this the case?

One theory says that hundreds of years of conditioning makes men and women behave this way. Back in the old days, when our ancestors lived in caves, the male hunted animals while the females gathered food. It was necessary for males to kill quick and head back to safety of settlement as fast as they could. This explains why males often enter the store, choose a product, pay, and leave at efficiently and at ease. Although, hunters went out in groups, hunting was not a social event. Thus, this theory also suggests that men prefer to shop alone. This holds true in UK as they found that 80% of men prefer to shop alone.

On the other hand, female gatherers were not in such a tearing hurry. Foraging for food was a social event that bonded other females of the tribe, inspecting every bush and tree to choose the best quality of food available. Which is now how women shops, by comparing item to item, looking for alternatives and exchanging information among other female shoppers.

So, next time when you are shopping, whether if you’re a female or male, watch your behaviour! It is truly interesting if you fall within the boundaries of this theory or even out of the range. Either way, we are consumers with all the interest in maximizing our satisfaction, whatever that may and however long we shop.


By: Queena Zeng

Last-minute Halloween Costumes

Not many students have time nor money for a lavish outfit, but that doesn’t mean you can’t dress up for Halloween! Check out some last-minute ideas to go to that party with the perfect outfit.

As university students, it’s hard to find time to make a Halloween costume and we certainly do not have the money to buy one– have you seen the prices of costumes recently? Who wants to spend hundreds of dollars on one night? So what can you do to show up to that party and be dressed the part?


  1. Stripes are your best friend


There are many costumes you can make if you own (or borrow) a striped shirt.

With black and white stripes, you can choose to be a burglar, a mime, or a pirate. Just match some dark coloured pants and some details to match the chosen outfit. A burglar can carry a sac with them and wear an eye mask. A mime should wear white gloves and consider wearing some make-up. A pirate should wrap a bandana on their head and wear an eye patch if you own one.

If you own a red and white striped shirt, you can be Waldo or Wilma just by pairing some jeans with it. If you own other red and white accessories (such as a hat or socks), wear that too.

Blue and white shirts can work for sailors, just pair it with some jeans and get a sailor’s hat to finish the outfit.


  1. Choose an animal

If you have a small amount of time, take a trip to the dollar store and buy some ears for an animal of your choice. All you need to do is draw some whiskers and a nose on your face and you’re set!

  1. Pick a pun!

If you’re still at a loss and don’t even have time to take a trip to the dollar store, pick your favourite pun, expression or title and make it into a costume. Usually this only requires very basic materials, sometimes just a name tag and prop. An example would be “Life” that gives you lemons. Wear the name tag “Life” and hand out lemons!

Last minute costumes just depend on what you own and feel comfortable wearing- if you’re a makeup fanatic, be a pop-art character or a SnapChat filter. If you already own superhero shirts, you know what to do! Just put something together and have a fun night!

Happy Halloween!



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How to Get Back Into Work or Study Mode After a Long Break

By: Meryem Aksahan

Starting school or work after a break can always be hard to get back into the stressful cycle all over again. Here are four tips that will help you ease the pain and let your productive days begin once again!
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