Creative Communications

Report
Creative
Communications
Julee Cunningham
Snohomish County PUD
NWPPA •September 2011
Today’s Topics

Who we are

Campaign variety

Conservation campaign

Assorted Examples

Creative Process
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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Snohomish PUD
North of Seattle
320,000 customers
950 employees
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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Who We Are
Nine employees in Corporate
Communications & Marketing department:
 Advertising
 Websites – internal & external
 Media interaction – reporters, press
releases, press tours
 Internal communications – employee
newsletter, flyers, campaigns
 External communications –
e-newsletters, customer magazine, bill
inserts, annual report
 Social media – Facebook, Twitter,
YouTube
 Graphic design
 Research & Surveying
 Education
 Print Shop & Mail Center
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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“Slips, Trips & Falls” Campaign
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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“Working Green”
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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“60th Anniversary”
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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“Team Up & Save” &
“Hot Summer Savings”
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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“Meet the Renewables”
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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Conservation @ the PUD

This year charged with saving 7.7 aMW
with a stretch goal of 8.4 aMW

Roughly a dozen conservation programs
that can be marketed

Residential and C/I

30+ years of staff experience
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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Campaign Background

In 2007, general manager charged us
with developing conservation campaign

Had to be produced with in-house staff

Wanted options

Developed four

Tested on customers & employees
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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Be a Conservation Sensation!
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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Strengths of Approach

Different!

Light-hearted

Helps make a serious topic fun

Helps make utility approachable

Features customers and employees
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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How the Campaign Developed

Super Hero concept

Management support essential

Wanted to tie in employees
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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Television Commercials
Foundational… and the hardest

Write scripts

Recruit talent & props

Feature customers and employees

Use outside video/editing

Focus on programs

Make them light-hearted
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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Customers Volunteer



Individuals/couples
Iconic Groups – Silvertips, cheerleaders,
sports groups, barbershop quartet,
firefighters
Local “fame” – mayor, county executive,
general manager, Rick Steves
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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Weatherization Commercial
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
CFL Commercial
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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Rick Steves Commercial
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Year 1 (2008)
We covered all the basics – plus some extras
 Print & online ads
 Radio
 Customer newsletter
 Website & Video Contest
 Special Tabloid
 Newsletters
 Videos
 Press releases
 Transit
 Billboard
 Lobby posters & employee “sensation” photos
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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E-newsletter
Lobby Poster
Billboard
Transit
Then We Started to Push Harder

Window clings

Special tabloid publications

T-shirts

Point-of-purchase

YouTube channel

FaceBook & Twitter pages

Envelopes, stationery, business card
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Most Recent Efforts…

Wrapped vehicles

Electronic sign

Playing cards

QR codes

Customer games

Geocache (121°39'30.261"W 47°57'39.252”N)
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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This Year’s Theme
It’s Time to Play…
Be a conservation sensation!

Kicked it off with calendar

Monster mascots

Customer and employee games

Ad booklet
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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Not Everything Works 

Capes on Tape video contest

County Executive

John Curley pitch
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Success Measurements
Mostly, though, things are going right:

Exceeded conservation targets for past
three years

Customers and employees ask to be
included

Local, regional and national recognition
of the campaign
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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Challenges Ahead

Tougher goals

Higher costs

Same budget

Fewer programs

Challenging audience

Stagnant economy
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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Good News!
We like challenges!

Keeps us hustling

Keeps us engaged

Keeps us excited about our jobs

Keeps us employed 
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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Our Creative Process

Annual retreat

Meet couple times a month

Monthly “To-Do’s”

Loads of communication plans!

Stuff Room

Hat box

Friday Fun

RAKs

Include FUN in each day

Cheer coaches
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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Cheer Coaches









Organized potlucks
Provided cereal bar
Hosted days for ice cream socials/floats/shakes/
yoguccinos, new Frappucino flavors Starbucks trip
Taught how to draw our faces & tie knots
Offered trivia and/or quizzes
Organized an office-trade
Held Pictionary contest
Looked for a geocache
Set-up Nerf basketball “Hoops” competition
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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Also…

Supportive & appreciative management team

Variety of talents, styles, ages, temperaments,
views in workgroup

Loads of good ideas

Work as individuals and as a team

Team members encouraged to ask hard questions
and challenge me and status quo

Fast, fluid, flexible
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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The Best Part of My Job
My Team!
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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Questions?
Creative Communications • Julee Cunningham, Snohomish County PUD • September 2011
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