The Southwest Florida Water Management District created the “Skip a Week” yard watering campaign to overcome misconceptions about the amount of water required for a healthy yard while encouraging a reduction in yard water use, ultimately helping the District to extend existing water supplies. Campaign design was based on formative research, a two-year pilot program on irrigation behaviors, focus groups made up of representatives from selected neighborhoods, and a Districtwide survey conducted to provide segmentation data on ways to encourage residential irrigation water conservation. Three high water-using neighborhoods, each with 100 homes similar in size and age were selected for the pilot, with one neighborhood serving as the control, one receiving education interventions only, and the third receiving a combination of education and advertising interventions. Water use at each of the homes was tracked prior to, during, and after the project period, with the results informing the messaging District staff would develop for the campaign’s extended outreach via television commercials, radio ads, billboards, bill stuffers, direct mail, and bus wraps. The "Skip a Week" integrated campaign ran from December 2009 to February 2010 with pre- and post campaign surveys and interviews with more than 1,000 residents conducted to gauge any shifts in attitudes and awareness related to reductions in yard watering. An estimated 1.2 billion gallons of water were saved during the four-month campaign based on the number of irrigation systems in the District, the average amount of water used per week by an irrigation system, and the 19 percent more respondents who reported they skipped every other week of irrigation in the post-campaign survey compared to the pre-campaign survey.
For much more information, click here