During the worst drought in living memory, residents in greater Newcastle were loving water a bit too much, using an average of 10% more water than other capital cities. Hunter Water asked Guts to help as water restrictions commenced for the first time since the 1980’s.
By talking to randoms in shopping centers, our ‘word on the street’ research gave us a killer insight – everyone thought they were an average user and not the problem. The data said otherwise.
Our proposition was simple; we needed everyone to ‘change a little, save a lot’. We came up with the Save your 4 campaign, which asked each resident to reduce water consumption by 40L per day, or 4 buckets.
Buckets. We made it tangible. The humble blue bucket was something everyone could relate to, and it became a branding device Hunter Water could own.
They also ran with our bold idea of a giant bucket art installation, which we then had to make a reality! The whole campaign focused on the 4-minute shower, something everyone could change without spending a cent.
Water consumption reduced by more than 20% vs. the target of 2% per year and the campaign was shortlisted for a Mumbrella award.
The 20% decrease also helped put the Hunter region among the leading water conserving regions in Australia and Hunter Water are seeing a sustained change in behaviour learned during restrictions, i.e., a higher community value of water scarcity even through COVID-19.