BC Hydro’s holiday campaign literally pedals energy efficiency

DDB Canada came up with a powerful way for BC Hydro to promote energy efficiency during the holidays. They invited passersby to pedal bicycles to produce enough electricity to light up saucy snowmen and trendy trees.

Vancouver-based BC Hydro’s three print/OOH executions feature a snowman and two trees striking catwalk-worthy poses to show off their eye-catching holiday light displays, made with energy-efficient LED lights instead of less enviro-friendly incandescent bulbs. The tag is ‘Make a statement.’

‘The original brief was really about the aesthetic value of these LED lights,’ explains Alan Russell, CD at DDB Canada’s Vancouver office. But he says his creative team decided to take the campaign a step further, concocting an interactive street component that would demonstrate both the aesthetic and energy-saving features of LED lights. In late November, bicycle-powered LED light displays launched in Vancouver’s Stanley Park and in Kamloops, BC. Passersby are able to hop on the stationary bikes to light up surrounding trees.

The street effort in downtown Vancouver also includes a holiday-themed billboard and bike power operated by volunteers from BC Hydro, DDB Canada, the BC Chapter of the Canadian Association of Food Banks, Symmetrics Cycling and non-traditional ad agency Smakhired. As well, a transit shelter will be equipped with a hand-cranked light display the public can interact with. Media buying was handled by OMD Canada’s Vancouver shop.