A Canadian community-based social marketing initiative for Water Conservation, called The Blue Dot, is getting a lot of mail. We can learn something from the Canadians, who like us, hate waste, but understand that waste motivates people especially well when it is waste that provides no benefit. Pure waste. Stuart Hickox
If you haven't heard, 20% of toilets leak all the time, up to 120 gallons per day, flushing up to $250/year on a municipal water bill. In case you're a visual thinker: In Canada, that's like 11 minutes of Niagara Falls of wasted drinking water. Everyday. These toilet stats should get our attention.
And so far, it seems to be working! At two weeks in, with over 120 volunteers trained and engaged, 3500 doors knocked on, and after 19 community events, The Blue Dot group learned some interesting things:
- An astonishing one in four people readily admit that they know that their toilet leaks, and yet they do nothing about it.
- The No. 1 barrier to fixing a toilet is the perception that the water in the tank is the same water that's in the bowl. We call this the "Gross Factor." Watch for our upcoming campaign video where we dip a cup in the tank for a nice cool drink. Refreshing!
- Once people see how easy it is to diagnose and repair the vast majority of leaks (something we also teach), folks rush out to do it. Every day I'm getting emails from strangers telling me that they have fixed their flapper. If they are telling us, imagine what they are saying proudly to their friends and neighbors!
We’ll share more about this fledgling program, so stay tuned.