BC Hydro shows power is precious

DDB was faced with an unusual challenge: BC Hydro wanted to get British Columbians to use less electricity.

The agency needed a way to attach value to electricity - regardless of its infinite availability. And since electricity in B.C. is so affordable, DDB had to focus on lifestyle value.

The strategy was to remind British Columbians what electricity allows them to do and recognize how valuable electricity is when we're forced to go without during an outage.

DDB used pre-roll, online video channels like YouTube, as well as cinema to bring the "Power is Precious" campaign to life. Three 30-second videos illustrate how different life would be without electricity to power cell phones, TVs, computers and even the internet. Transit shelter posters, radio and newspaper ads also supported the message.

To remind people to only use the lights they need, DDB created a customized motion sensor display. "Let's be Smart with our Power" was written across six storefront windows, and the light behind each word only turned on when someone walked in front of them.

A living billboard was fully covered with lightbulbs, and over time, the incandescent bulbs would "burn out" leaving just the LED bulbs to communicate "LED Bulbs Last Longer."

All communications drove to Powersmart.ca, which featured video, deals, and even an interactive game called "5 p.m. Sprint," which educated workplace-specific customers on how they can save energy in the office.

DDB's LED living billboard and online video titled "Internet" were both shortlisted at Cannes, while the website received 40% more traffic (3.4 million page views) than the same period the year prior.