You can get a lot more done by reporting a power outage to Xcel Energy than staring down your appliances.
Such is the message in the Minneapolis-based energy company's new print effort, which broke earlier this month from McClain Finlon Advertising.
In one ad targeting residential customers, a fellow stares aghast at his blender, in which his strawberry milkshake has ceased to mix. "You were surprised when the power went out," notes the copy. "Don't be surprised when it comes back on." In another ad that targets small businesses, a woman gazes intently at her now nonfunctioning lamp.
Both ads detail how once the problem is reported to Xcel, the company can provide an estimated repair time once it deciphers what caused the problem. There is no tagline.
The work seeks to keep consumers informed without focusing on the negative aspects of outages, said Steve Harbour, senior art director at the Denver agency. "It's about what [Xcel] can do for the consumer," he said.
The shop is also running two other B2B print ads with similar creative. The work is running in newspapers and magazines in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and North and South Dakota.