ENERGY | Reliability campaign

Background

Westar Energy is the electric utility for eastern Kansas. The company’s ReliabiliTree program manages tree-trimming crews across its territory to maintain safe and reliable electrical service for its customers.

Challenge

Westar and its tree contractors work year-round to trim back and/or remove branches that interfere with power lines. They also proactively trim trees near power lines so that they don’t create problems later, particularly during inclement weather. Most customers don't know that Westar is involved with tree trimming until trees in their yard are affected, and they sometimes have a negative reaction.

Solution

We were tasked with creating a campaign that improves customer awareness and promotes a sense that Westar’s arborists genuinely care about their customers’ trees. We developed a concept based on the idea that Westar is a company filled with engineers. With the ReliabiliTree program, Westar takes a very logical approach to what is often a very emotional issue for their customers. To help bridge this divide, we produced a TV spot, print ads, social media posts and digital display units that conveyed a technical, caring approach with results that mattered—tree-related outages were down 60 percent in areas where crews had trimmed.

Because of timing and winter weather, we didn’t have the luxury of shooting live action video. Instead, we developed a TV spot with stills from a ride-along shoot we did in Summer 2015 and used animation to bring them to life.

Art direction & design // Chris Ralston    
Writer // John Carlton    Producer // jon Hardesty    Video production // Liquid 9