It’s Helen O’Clock

//  03.14.16

Romance When You Need It

Harlequin has kicked off its “Romance When You Need It” campaign which features a new online video that will serve as a rallying cry for romance readers everywhere.

Long commute home? Coffee break at work? Harlequin’s got you covered. Whether a reader needs an escape from her hectic day, or has some unexpected time to herself, she can count on Harlequin for romance whenever and wherever she needs it.

The video shows a group of office workers, being swept away by different romantic archetypes – from a fireman to a dashing billionaire playboy – living out their literary fantasies whenever they can find a quick moment. The campaign is created by BBDO Toronto and the video is directed by Ben/Dave of Partners Film, Toronto.

“Harlequin Romances offer today’s women a perfect break from their daily stresses and pressures. The work also demonstrates Harlequin’s relationship with women in an engaging, playful manner,” says Linda Carte, VP Associate Creative Director at BBDO Toronto.

The video is live on a campaign specific splash page:, which also offers descriptions of Harlequin’s library of titles and a link to 17 free Harlequin Romances, downloadable in PDF or EPub formats. There is also a print and social media campaign that leverages the different romantic Harlequin archetypes to meet the needs of its readers.

“Harlequin readers have a strong direct relationship with the brand and the message in this video perfectly captures those moments when they turn to Harlequin for a break or for some well-deserved me-time,” adds Farah Mullick, Marketing Director, Series.

The campaign is being further supported with a highly targeted online buy, in-store, loyalty and event programs, and blogger outreach.

Credits are posted after the print images below.


Client: Harlequin Enterprises
Vice President, Single Title Marketing: Stacy Widdrington
Creative Director, Romance Fiction: Tony Horvath
Director, Digital Products: Farah Mullick
Director, Romance Publicity, Partnerships & Events: Michelle Renaud
Product Manager, Retail Marketing: Shana Mongroo

Agency: BBDO Toronto
SVP, Executive Creative Director: Denise Rossetto
SVP, Executive Creative Director: Todd Mackie
VP, ACD, Art Director: Linda Carte
VP, ACD, Copywriter: Irfan Khan
Broadcast Producer: Jennifer Morrison
Account Director: Paul Forrest
Account Executive: Zach Kula

Production Company: Partners Film
Executive Producer: Gigi Realini
Directors: Ben/Dave
Producer: Andrew Sulliman
DOP: André Pienaar

Post House: Saints Editorial
Executive Producer: Michelle Rich
Editor: Griff Henderson
Assistant Editor: Tim MacLennan

Audio House: Ricochet Post Productions
Executive Producer: Mary Beth O’Dell
Audio Production Manager: Mike Rosnick

Wardrobe Stylist: Stacy L.Troke
Hair and Makeup: Shawna Lee

Advertising, Short Film