SIA Newsletter

Sporting Life | Toronto, ON

Sporting Life has built a name for itself as Toronto’s premier retailer destination for sporting goods, athletic wear and fashion.

Founded in 1979 by Patti Russell, Brian McGrath and David Russell, the company’s personality is as distinctive as the product lines it carries. Sporting Life does more than just sell sporting goods and fashion: they are proactive in social responsibility and a reflection of the community it serves.

Customers keep coming back to the Sporting Life environment because of the excellent customer service, great value and outstanding selection.

In the early years starting in 1979, we were devoted to building a clientele for ski equipment, running shoes, racquet sports gear and fashion apparel for sports enthusiasts.

27 years later, Sporting Life is an operation that consists of two flag ship stores, a bike and snowboard specific store and a store located in Collingwood, heart of the ski country in Ontario 1 and _ hours north of Toronto. A store dedicated to servicing the Collingwood area, its private ski clubs and the Toronto market.

The people at Sporting Life care more than just about sales, they are concerned with what’s happening in the world and draw people into their stores to involve them with the community at large. You feel it the moment you walk in _ Sporting Life is a totally unique experience.

Sporting Life lives what it sells.

Sporting Life sponsors grass root skiing and is deeply involved with racing and freestyle programs. They are an official retailer to the Canadian National Ski Team and sponsor major sporting events such as The Rogers Cup Tennis Tournament, 2 of Canada largest 24 hour mountain biking events and The Sporting Life 10K, Canada’s fastest 10K running through downtown Toronto, all for Camp Oochigeas, a children’s camp for kids afflicted with Cancer.

Sporting Life also invests a lot of money into its advertising and marketing campaigns that combine some of Toronto’s biggest billboards, a high traffic website, a concentrated email database defined by lifestyle, an annual full page newsprint campaign and a new interactive private digital network infrastructure within its store which enables them to not only market themselves by its brands that they carry but also by using kiosks as the consumer interface.

Because of the demographic that Sporting Life caters too, the store was able to create its own advertising/media space and sell and create marketing programs with third party groups that match their demographic. Such partners that exist are Intrawest, American Express, Ski Can and Travel Alberta. Sporting life has just recently won an award from the Canadian Marketing Association for Enabling Technology as the first retailer in Canada to successfully launch such a program.
As of this month Sporting Life also launched the first digital window display application using The North Face as the brand to the already popular existing seasonal display window campaign which sees over one million impressions a week.
New in the immediate future will be the Sporting Life launch of its e commerce site which will be the first Canadian on-demand platform in Canada.