Project: Production of live experiences with repurposed products.
People: Colleagues at Venables Bell & Partners; Pacific Gas & Electric; California men, women and children.
Almost everyone around me doubted that advertising could positively affect people when I started working for an ad agency. And when our utility company client diversified its renewable energy mix, we were nervous that any initiatives might be accused of greenwashing.
After weeks of late-night brainstorming, our team decided to introduce the company’s investment in renewables with a series of public pop-up cafés. With a tentative “yes” from PG&E, we partnered with ReadyMade magazine to create and place sod couches throughout the city for public enjoyment.
As lead producer I pressed to collaborate with the Artist in Residence Program at the SF Dump to make furniture from (literal) local trash. A loved local coffee company supplied beverages and members of the PG&E team met with café visitors at parks and farmers markets. The experiences drew tens of thousands of people live. By creating engaging opportunities for dialogue, we generated much more positive interest from sustainability bloggers and more live interactions than a traditional ad campaign ever could have.