Everyone knows that laughter is good for you. Studies suggest it can buffer stress and increase your resistance to disease. Also, it just feels great to laugh. Advertisers have long used the allure of laughter to sell their products, and many Americans tune in to the Super Bowl just to chuckle at the funny commercials. However, when it comes to selling people on smart energy solutions, it could be hard to find a punch line. Could using humor as a marketing strategy make energy efficiency a bit more digestible?
Energy Impact Illinois, a grant recipient of the Energy Department’s Better Buildings Neighborhood Program (BBNP), is trying to find the funny in energy efficiency. The goal? Communicate the benefits of home energy upgrades and motivate local residents to take action in improving their buildings. The program has enlisted two comedians from Second City, a comedy theatre whose alumni include Tina Fey, Stephen Colbert, and Bill Murray to play “The Energy Bills,” friends who visit Chicago area homes distributing energy saving tips.
“Little Bill” knows all the tricks to make your home more energy efficient and your bills, well, little. “Big Bill’s” actions show how everything from overuse or misuse of appliances to not understanding heating and cooling can result in energy waste — costing you money. You can witness the comedy in their online video series.
The contrast of the Bills is quite amusing, but jokes aside, Energy Impact Illinois is spreading an important message. You have a choice between two bills. Instructions on how to learn more or participate in Energy Impact Illinois’ program are on their website, Facebook page, and Twitteraccount. The website also offers a tool called MyHomeEQ, which lets Chicago area residents calculate about how much energy they could save with energy upgrades and helps them come up with a customized plan to get rid of their Big Bill, all while connecting them with local contractors.
This is just one partner’s creative approach to spreading the good message about how energy efficiency can lead to better bills, better comfort, and a better economy.
So why did the LED light bulb cross the road? Because it knew that the grass and the houses were greener on the other side. Ok, so maybe I’m not as funny as Energy Impact Illinois, but you gotta give me an “A” for effort!
Source: US Department of Energy, Roland Risser, Program Manager, Building Technologies Program