Questar “Psycho”

Saving the planet would be nice, but saving money is a more immediate incentive for most consumers. As such, this spot for Questar Gas (via agency Richter7 in Salt Lake City) is smart to focus on the savings homeowners can get by using the utility’s ThermWise conservation program, which includes home energy audits, rebates for efficient appliances, and so on. The star of the campaign is a nerdy fellow named “Therm” (a.k.a. “the Energy Wise Guy”), who turns up in an attic (checking out the insulation), a basement (checking the efficiency of the furnace) and a shower (checking the flow of the shower head). Is it alarming to have some someone from the gas utility turning up in various parts of one’s house? Yes! But instead of ignoring that fact, the campaign makes the most of it by giving a horror-movie quality to the vignettes — most notably in the shower version seen here, which (inevitably) adopts a Psycho motif. It’s a little odd, but it gets your attention so you’ll heed the message that Questar is serious about being a source of money-saving information. Viewers can scarcely help but take in the point that Questar can help them cut their energy consumption and, hence, their energy bills. As the tagline of each spot says, “If you conserve, you can save.” –Mark Dolliver