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Agency Off Record

City & County of Denver: Electric Car Campaign

Transportation emissions are among the top sources of greenhouse gas emissions in Denver. To help reduce these harmful emissions, the City & County of Denver decided to take a comprehensive and integrated approach in raising awareness about the benefits of electric vehicles (EVs). EVs offer a significant opportunity to reduce emissions and improve air quality. And thanks to state and federal tax credits, Colorado is among the best states in which to purchase an EV. Despite these savings, EV sales still account for less than 1 percent of total car sales.

The Challenge

The City & County of Denver conducted years of planning, including research, creating a program implementation plan, and gaining experience on the ground to understand EV consumers. The client fully understood that there were significant barriers to creating education and awareness around EVs, and these could lead to some challenges along the way. The bottom line suggested that, regardless of how fast the vehicles are, the number of charging stations deployed, or the size of the tax credit, the majority of residents are either uninformed or misinformed about electric cars.

The Approach

AOR executed an in-depth discovery period to understand the industry and challenges outlined, ultimately developing a strategic and creative campaign grounded in research. Our goal was to deliver campaign concepts that would engage the audience and have real PR potential to ensure that the campaign gained citywide attention.

We developed the concept “PASS GAS. Drive Electric”

  • The campaign is meant to be fun, fresh, and colorful.
  • The campaign creates interest by combining illustrative and photographic elements.
  • It effectively showcases EV owners interacting with their cars.
  • A humorous approach was created to draw attention and entice media outlets for added reach.

Pass Gas. Drive Electric. Denver Campaign Graphic

The Process:

The campaign leveraged both digital and traditional advertising tactics to promote Plug-In Electric Vehicle Month in September 2017. The campaign continued in October 2017 to drive people to the campaign landing page to learn more.

Digital Ad Placements included:

  • Facebook Ads
  • Twitter Ads
  • Snapchat Geofilter
  • Display Ads
  • YouTube Pre-roll Ads

Traditional Media included:

  • Billboards
  • Posters
  • Banners
  • Car magnets

We used custom URLs to track which deliverables performed best, which drove the most traffic, and how long visitors stayed on the landing page.

The Outcome:

The client was thrilled with the campaign creative because it pushed the envelope and made a splash throughout the Denver metro area.

Results for September-October 2017:

  • More than 3 million impressions from display ads
  • 13,914 YouTube video views
  • Twitter, Facebook, Display, and YouTube drove 90 percent of the landing-page traffic
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