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220 NW 8th Ave. Portland, Oregon 97209

NW Natural offers their customers the opportunity to support sustainable energy in the form of biogas derived from cow manure. The program, entitled “SmartEnergy” is brilliant, environmentally responsible, and a challenge to promote without referencing, well… cow poo.

When NW Natural engaged happy, inc. to design a website promoting the program, we discovered that previous materials had been featuring the back end of a cow, dirty tail and all, in an attempt to bring humor to the campaign. We decided to take a different approach and focus on the cow’s inherent friendliness and comic inelegance to lighten the theme. In short, we turned the cow around to focus on her pink-nosed, brown-eyed face. We used blue skies and green fields as our background elements to emphasize the clean aspect of biofuels as an energy source. We also adopted an overall casual messaging tone and included calls-to-action equating the cost of enrollment to typical daily low-cost purchases — a newspaper, latte, or fast food lunch — to put into perspective the environmental return on an enrollee’s small investment.

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