OPG branches out with the League of Trees

Who: Ontario Power Generation, in partnership with Local Enhancement and Appreciation of Forests (LEAF), the Bruce Trail Conservancy and the Nature Conservancy of Canada, with Forsman & Bodenfors Toronto and Media Kitchen.

What: “League of trees,” a new campaign highlighting the important role trees play in combating climate change. There’s also a social responsibility component, with OPG and its partners committing to plant up to 500,000 trees in Ontario for every video view or shared photo using the #LeagueOfTrees hashtag.

When & Where: Timed to coincide with National Forest Week, the campaign launched in mid-September and runs through Oct. 26 across all of the major online platforms. Ads are also running on Spotify, as well as programmatic display and video.

Why: The goal here is to underscore the heroic role that the province’s 85 billion trees play in the battle against climate change—from the Bur Oak’s branches and roots that soak up excess water from rainfall, to the Sugar Maple taking toxins out of the air, and the Eastern White Cedar providing a home for a wide variety of wildlife species.

How: The campaign is rooted(!) in a 45-second spot that treats the League of Trees like a team of Marvel-esque superheroes. It is presented like an after-school ad for children’s toys, with a high-energy rock soundtrack and kids excitedly playing with actual models of the three trees created for the spot.

Forsman & Bodenfors also developed a dedicated League of Trees website featuring factoids about the impact of trees on the environment and a downloadable colouring comic book (right). Other campaign elements include League of Trees Giphy stickers and an interpretative superhero walk along Ontario’s Bruce Trail that includes an audio component and comic-book style signage (think the ’60s Batman show) designed to specifically encourage Instagram sharing.

And we quote: “What we immediately loved about this platform was its ability to resonate with not only kids but also adults who would appreciate the nostalgia factor. We believe corporations have an important role to play in fighting climate change. Since 2014 we’ve been involved in planting over 7 million native trees and shrubs and we are committed to growing that number in the coming years starting with this campaign.” —Adam McClare, senior manager, brand and corporate projects, Ontario Power Generation


Chris Powell