Energy efficiency takes a dramatic twist

Client: Michigan Saves, Consumers Energy, DTE Energy, Dow Building Solutions

Four Michigan-based organizations faced the same challenge: how could they motivate Michigan homeowners to improve energy efficiency? Their individual efficiency messages were going in one ear and out the other, so they joined forces with us to develop a statewide PSA campaign. Acting as the command and creative center for this coalition effort, we created “Avoid Energy Drama” – a campaign that connected energy efficiency (rather, the lack thereof) with a memorable and relatable scenario: everyday family drama. By putting a light-hearted spin on two common household disputes, we helped the audience see they did indeed have an efficiency problem – and our sponsors had solutions.

Client Challenge

Homeowners were convinced they didn’t have an energy efficiency problem – so communications about our sponsors’ efficiency solutions weren’t sinking in.

Shelton Strategy

Ignorance wasn’t bliss – homeowners still dealt with energy and comfort issues. We needed to wake them up to the cause – energy inefficiency – with a dash of humor and real life before our sponsors’ communications would hit home.

Critical Tactics

  • TV
  • Digital
  • Social

The Payoff

The PSA campaign garnered more than twice as many broadcast impressions as projected, totaling about 35 million from unpaid media – nearly equivalent to a $1 million media buy. One in four website visitors requested more information about an energy audit and/or clicked through to a sponsor’s website, and Michigan Saves received more than double their goal for energy efficiency loan inquiries during the campaign’s run.

Suzanne Shelton

President and CEO

Suzanne is the voice and the vision of Shelton Group. Drawing on her extensive experience in energy and the environment – and 25+ years in the marketing and advertising industry – Suzanne provides high-level strategic insights for our clients and guidance for our research and creative departments. She regularly speaks at conferences around the country, including Sustainable Brands, Fortune Brainstorm E and the International Builders’ Show, and serves as a guest columnist for publications like Fast Company, Green Builder and

Susannah Enkema

VP Research & Insights

Susannah directs our research team and plays a key role in extracting the nuggets of information that pave the way for recommended marketing strategies and creative approaches. Susannah has nearly two decades of market research and strategy experience, including her role as president of SE Consulting, where she led the services for the likes of DIY Network and the makers of GORE-TEX®.

Laila Waggoner

VP Client Engagement

Laila leads our client engagement process, overseeing activities from both a strategic and a tactical level to ensure our work generates desired results – and clients’ satisfaction. She brings 25+ years of marketing leadership experience to her client relationships, with particular expertise in the homebuilding and remodeling industries as well as member-driven organizations, such as the Vinyl Siding Institute and Plastics Pipe Institute. Before joining Shelton Group, she led strategic marketing teams for Owens Corning’s insulation business.

Matt Brass

VP Creative

Matt steers the creative department in concepting, designing and producing campaigns. He ensures sound strategy and deep insights inform everything his team develops, and works closely with the accounts department to ensure copy and designs will meet our clients’ goals. As a designer and filmmaker himself, he’s also a principal contributor to all of Shelton’s in-house photography and videography work.

Courtnay Hamachek

VP Operations

Courtnay oversees our day-to-day operations to keep us running smoothly and support our growth. She establishes project management systems and processes to help our teams anticipate bottlenecks, prevent process issues, and keep projects on time and on target. Courtnay has built extensive experience over 25 years in all aspects of marketing, from account services and project management to design and production.

Mike Beamer

VP Business Development

Mike joined our team to help provide strategic vision and foster our agency’s growth by overseeing new business leads and managing agency marketing and website content. He arrived in Knoxville steeped in energy efficiency and renewables – he previously led client service for an agency division in Boston dedicated to marketing communications strategy and branding for B2B and B2C clients in that space.