Meet Terry the Turtle. Despite the popular belief that turtles are slow, this one is pretty quick to get results. He’s been helping California-based Save Energy Windows & Doors, a residential replacement window provider, to boost revenue growth to a whopping 28% in just over a year, according to the company.  

Designs for Terry the Turtle are executed by Richard Germinaro
Designs for Terry the Turtle are executed by Richard Germinaro

The campaign was created by Bill McGowan of BMCG Creative Services, marketing consultant for Save Energy Windows & Doors. Terry the Turtle is displayed on billboards, in six regional weekly newspapers, and in monthly direct-mail campaigns. The company says its name awareness has improved significantly since launching Terry the Turtle 18 months ago, reporting an over 200% increase in Google searches.

The ads are designed to help the community connect with the business. Different ads are released monthly to either represent local events or coincide with regular calendar holidays.  “Here in the Bay Area nobody changes their ads. We change Terry every month. We do that to have a conversation with our audience and make ourselves fresh,” explains McGowan.

For example, the April ad, pictured above, features Butter & Egg Days, a big event in Petaluma, Calif. The Slam Dunk ad, below, is tied into the strong regional support for the 2015 NBA Champions, the Golden State Warriors.

People often make buying decisions with their emotions, but connecting windows to emotions can be tricky. That’s where Terry the Turtle comes in--he's cute while looking out the window, and both men and women respond well to him, the company says. McGowan says he was looking to do something different that would help the window provider stand out and allow potential customers to form an emotional connection to the company. He came up with Terry after a few test runs of other characters looking out of windows. The test audience responded best to Terry.

Save Energy’s ads help the company maintain a consistent presence in the market. The recurring appearance of Terry the Turtle also allows Save Energy to be more memorable and stand out among competitors. 

When asked what recommendation he had for other companies looking to revamp an advertising strategy, McGowan had this to say: “Take a long-term approach and do campaigns that are well thought out to live longer than month-to-month. You want to do advertising year-to-year.”