In the fall of 2012, research began and we embarked on a journey with Bullfrog Power to increase their residential customer base. The Be Powerful campaign was featured in-market in 2013 and is still going strong in 2014.
Bullfrog Power is Canada's largest green energy provider. In the past several years, residential sales started to flag and total customer numbers began to decline. Our agency was asked to develop a strategy and campaign to reverse this trend.
We took a long, hard look at what the client was currently doing or not doing to drive sales. We also looked at best practices in the retail energy sectors across North America and Western Europe to understand the obstacles halting conversion and identify winning strategies.
We worked closely with the client, sharing findings and engaging in multi-stakeholder strategy sessions to develop a blueprint for a campaign. We also surveyed and interviewed current and lapsed Bullfrog Power customers to understand why they signed on, why they stayed or why they lapsed. The key insight our research team discovered was that people were not choosing to become green energy customers to "save the world" — they were joining Bullfrog Power to enhance their personal brand! Contrary to common belief in the environmental marketing space, customers were more motivated by self-enhancement than self-transcendence.
From this insight our agency developed the campaign concept called Be Powerful. The idea was to show people how they could become an environmental "superhero" by being a Bullfrog Power customer. We cast models who looked like real people to represent our target consumer group (urban, educated, ages 25-39 years old, diverse) and our creative team crafted images that conveyed the sense of personal brand enhancement that our research showed customers wanted — cape and all.
Armed with this bold new approach to conveying the benefits of green energy, we worked closely with our clients to develop a 360° sales and marketing plan. We recognized that door-to-door sales had to play a key role in generating new customers, so we helped the sales team craft the Be Powerful brand message right into their sales script. We then developed a "warm the door" advertising plan that featured strategic out-of-home transit shelter posters and billboards (placed months in advance) in the neighbourhoods we would be targeting with our door-to-door campaign.
Despite a modest budget, we leveraged the Be Powerful campaign through our practice of Immersive Consumer Engagement (I.C.E.) with a full suite of channels including online, print, CRM and experiential.
Before the campaign began, Bullfrog residential sign ups were essentially flat for several years. Over the course of the campaign, Bullfrog Power's residential consumer enrollments increased by an unexpected 38%. The campaign was the most successful residential marketing campaign in the company's history from a conversion by region metric. It struck such a nerve that the client used the Be Powerful creative strategy for their enterprise sales efforts and it has become a core element of their brand expression throughout all channels.