Bruce Chambers

Ad Guy

Bruce began his career writing radio commercials for stations in Red Deer, Calgary and Toronto. Then in-house at a national department store, and then ad agencies with campaigns for major national and regional clients. For the past couple of decades, he's been a freelance creative director and copywriter for agencies in Calgary and Victoria. He began his weekly Ad Guy columns on CBC Radio in 2003.

Latest from Bruce Chambers


Hygge is Danish for 'cozy,' ad-speak for 'dollars'

'Hygge' is defined as 'a quality of coziness and conviviality that engenders a feeling of well-being.' And to CBC Ad Guy Bruce Chambers, hygge has become one of the hottest trends in marketing.

Noticed changes in how your cereal is advertised? Blame millennials

What you're eating for breakfast, and whether you're eating breakfast at all, might suggest how old you are. Millenials don't eat breakfast the way previous generations have, and that's changing how breakfast is advertised.

5 of the worst ads in the world, according to viewer complaints

When we see ads that annoy or offend us, most of us simply complain to whoever's nearby. But according to CBC Ad Guy Bruce Chambers, a tiny minority complains to advertising regulators, who are empowered to take action against such ads. These are some of the most complained-about ads of the past year.

Sex sells... but not the way you think

We've all heard that sex sells. But what it actually sells is a very small range of products. And in some cases, it sells less than traditional ads. So why is it still used so frequently? Our Ad Guy finds out.

The hazy world of vaping ads

In April, Britain's Royal College of Physicians reported that the hazards from e-cigarettes are likely less than the harms from smoking tobacco. As CBC Ad Guy Bruce Chambers points out, such findings fan the flames of marketing on both sides of the issue.

'Dumb men' the latest punching bag in advertising: Ad Guy

CBC's ad guy has noticed a trend that's turning the tables on sexism in advertising. Now it's men's turn to be treated as well-meaning idiots.

Fighting couples are good for Valentine's Day sales

For some marketers, Valentine's Day means uncomfortable imagery, including arguments, violence, trauma and suffering. When you want your ad to jump out of the pack, you sometimes need to go against the tide.

Sneaky ads: how commercials are hidden everywhere

Most commercials are easy to spot. But in 2015, marketers got increasingly sneaky – and tried to get our attention by disguising ads as apps, objects or entertainment.

Celebrities cash in hawking products to social media followers

We're all familiar with seeing our favourite sports hero or movie star endorsing a product. But thanks to social media, the line between celebrities using a product and celebrities selling a product is becoming kind of fuzzy.

Marketers reflect millennial values to sell them products

On June 26, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that same-sex marriage was legal in all 50 states. But mainstream marketers have long figured that supporters of same-sex relationships are a valuable target audience.