Walmart Canada Is Creating a New Scripted Branded Content Series That Aims for Authenticity

Upstairs Amy will be available on YouTube this fall

Characters in Upstairs Amy document a search in a series of YouTube videos. Brendan Adam-Zwelling
Headshot of Sami Main

In an effort to capitalize on the momentum behind branded content series, Walmart Canada is launching a scripted series later this fall.

Upstairs Amy, a dramedy that will be available on YouTube, follows the lives of three modern women and is about millennial parents and the differences between what their lives are now and what they thought they’d become. The titular Amy has moved apartments with her family and enlists her friend’s help to find out more about her fabulous new neighbor. They document their search in a series of YouTube videos—one of the main characters is an accountant turned YouTuber—and the series incorporates actual social media influencers.

“The story of Upstairs Amy, and the many influencers we have engaged with for this program, reflects these core values in an authentic and entertaining way,” said Heather Loosemore, senior director of marketing communications for Walmart Canada, regarding the changing family dynamic across the world today.

The series will be produced by Shaftesbury in association with Interac, the Canadian debit card company. Ruckus Digital will lead development on media buying and social content for the series.

“The series was built on the Walmart and Interac brand values and attributes from the ground up,” said Kaaren Whitney-Vernon, svp of branded entertainment for Shaftesbury. “It is exciting to infuse their respective brand values into an original series as well as supporting the series with blogs, vlogs, and social content created by real-life influencers, extending the series’ themes and storylines into the real world.”

Hamilton Beach, the official small kitchen appliance partner for the series, will be featured throughout the episodes, in influencer call-outs online and featured links on Walmart Canada’s site.

“We are so excited to engage with this audience—a digitally savvy generation who has grown up with us and truly embraces technology,” said Andrea Danovitch, evp of marketing and brand at Interac. “The prospect of coming together with another iconic brand like Walmart to offer up relevant content in an authentic manner is a welcome opportunity.” 

@samimain Sami Main is social editor for Adweek, where she posts Adweek content onto social platforms and looks for creative ways to communicate what's new.