February Lunch ‘n Learn with Martinus Geleynse

Would you ever get on the phone with someone you don’t know and say the first thing that comes to mind? Hopefully not. Martinus Geleynse compares the preparedness leading up to a phone conversation to how prepared you should be when taking on strategic marketing and storytelling: Who is calling? Why do you call? Who do you call? When do you call? And finally, what do you say?

Martinus was the keynote presenter for iF’s February Lunch ‘n Learn, leading an interactive discussion on using effective storytelling to craft your brand.


He is the owner of urbanicity Omnimedia, a creative agency based in downtown Hamilton.  In this role, Martinus serves as publisher of urbanicity Magazine, operates a series of urban bus tours, and hosts urbanicityTV on Cable 14.  He is also the creator of Novemburger and April Salads, ran creative communications for Fred Eisenberger’s successful 2014 mayoral campaign, and quarterbacked the Fund Us To Feed You crowdfunding campaign for the Other Bird Restaurant Group. So, he knows a thing or two about marketing!

Martinus led a collaborative discussion at the Lunch ‘n Learn and began his presentation with the importance of branding and knowing and living your story. He engaged the audience in an exercise in describing well-known brands as if they were a person. Starbucks, for example, was painted as an artistic, environmentally conscious, bike-riding, concert-attending hip young person, while Tim Horton’s was described in a more blue collar, neighbourly, jean-wearing, pickup-driving fashion.

He explained that though it’s crucial for an entrepreneur to know their story inside-out and have a clear, compelling plot, it is equally important for them to know their audience. In the telephone example, you have a clear message and purpose for communicating, and you know who you are calling and how they will likely respond. When marketing your brand story, you similarly must know who your customer is: what is their business? What is their story? What are their goals? How will they likely hear/receive your story?

Martinus’ presentation also covered communication theory, marketing basics and what makes a brand. You can view his full slide deck here and photos from the event here.


At each month’s Lunch ‘n Learn we also feature an up-and-coming iF client to share a 5-minute highlight of their business. This month’s Factory 5 was Sina Afshani of BlueOrchid Care Inc., who is focused on creating assistive living products aimed to increase the quality of life for both patients and caregivers. Thank to both Martinus and Sina for sharing your stories with us!

Our Lunch ‘n Learn events are a great way to get out and network while enjoying a free lunch and learning something new! Make sure to keep checking our event calendar for upcoming Lunch ‘n Learns and other events in the ecosystem.


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