FilterForGood 2.0: Personal Sustainability
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FilterForGood 2.0: Personal Sustainability

Brita’s “FilterForGood” program started in August 2007 as a cause-driven public relations campaign to reduce bottled water waste, and in 2008-2009 it morphed into a full-fledged movement that’s increasing Brita product sales and driving interest around a personally sustainable lifestyle. FilterForGood 2.0, is the evolution of the breakthrough FilterForGood campaign that ignited a movement and resulted in the brand being hijacked by Brita consumers who are making simple changes to make a positive

Holmes Report

 

Brita’s “FilterForGood” program started in August 2007 as a cause-driven public relations campaign to reduce bottled water waste, and in 2008-2009 it morphed into a full-fledged movement that’s increasing Brita product sales and driving interest around a personally sustainable lifestyle. FilterForGood 2.0, is the evolution of the breakthrough FilterForGood campaign that ignited a movement and resulted in the brand being hijacked by Brita consumers who are making simple changes to make a positive impact on the environment and health of individuals and the planet – while also saving money!
 
“I have a Brita, but when I was getting lazy and not replacing my filters I started buying bottled water. Realizing the harm to the environment and inspiration from The Biggest Loser, I am going to use the few bottles of water I have left and not buy another one.  I'll get new filters for my Brita and get a reusable bottle!” –Brita Facebook Fan
 
Situation Analysis
Brita launched the breakthrough FilterForGood program in 2007 to educate consumers about reducing bottled water waste. It was based on an online pledge at FilterForGood.com, the campaign’s hub, for which visitors pledged their commitment to switching from bottled water to a reusable bottle filled with filtered tap water. The program was a success in making Brita a part of the “bottled water backlash” movement and the Brita pitcher and FilterForGood reusable bottle (made by Nalgene) as icons for kicking the bottled water habit.
 
By the spring of 2008, media began to tire of the anti-bottled water story. In order to continue to keep Brita top of mind and relevant for consumers, Edelman worked with Brita to evolve the approach for the FilterForGood program: FilterForGood 2.0. The idea of “personal sustainability” – making positive choices to sustain your health, your environment and save money – was gaining traction and the Brita FilterForGood campaign was a relevant and credible action to support the personal sustainability lifestyle.
 
Planning & Research
The planning process began with research that helped define the program’s target audiences and objectives. Edelman worked closely with Brita and other agency partners, such as Brita’s interactive and advertising agencies, to share key insights, brainstorm and develop strategic tactics that worked together and supported the overall program’s platform.
 
Edelman reviewed existing research and overlaid it with consumer trend data from Yankelovich and Iconoculture, Simmon’s Data and Edelman’s 2008 goodpurpose™ study.
·      82% of consumers globally say they can personally make a difference by supporting good causes, and 83% of consumers are willing to change their own consumption habits to help make tomorrow’s world a better place.
·      Environment was the No.1 social cause consumers care about.
 
 
Research also showed students of all ages played important roles in consumer actionism.
·      There was growing interest in sustainability amongst college students. Nearly half of all universities within the top three tiers adopted sustainability majors – a dramatic increase from five years ago.
·      Children were some of the key influencers in families who live sustainably. More than half of 6-to-8-year-olds encourage their parents to buy green products.
Brita’s consumer segmentation data showed consumers were drinking a variety of water from filtered and unfiltered tap to bottled water. This demonstrated the importance of conveying filtered water’s benefits over unfiltered tap and bottled water.
 
Edelman also conducted daily media monitoring and analysis, which was used to identify course correction as needed, opportunistic story angles and ensure tactics and results met client objectives.
 
Objectives
Brita’s main objective is to inspire simple changes in their target audience’s behavior through raising awareness of why Brita is a key ingredient in a sustainable lifestyle. Brita seeks to engage media, influencers and consumers on emotional and rational levels, provide more reasons for them to use a Brita filtration system and ultimately increase product sales. 
 
Audience Analysis
In addition to consumers, the program’s target audience included influencers and media.
 
Staying true to the FilterForGood campaign’s beginnings, Edelman understood direct engagement with influencers and consumers would help create a strong relationship between Brita and consumers. The team targeted influencers and events based on their ability to offer the program credibility and their alignment with the three pillars of personal sustainability: health, environment and value.
 
Using Edelman’s proprietary audience analysis tool, Media Impact, Edelman conducted extensive research on what type of traditional media Brita’s target audience was consuming and aimed for coverage in those outlets. Key outlets for Brita’s audience were lifestyle publications like Shape, Seventeen and Men’s Health, as well as alternative radio reaching the young-adult/college student demographic.
 
Strategic Approach
FilterForGood was built upon a foundation of passionate individuals who had made a commitment to making positive choices that impacted the environment.
 
The evolution of FilterForGood 2.0 was based upon Brita and Edelman’s multi-tiered approach to tap into the existing fan base and build it through a combination of key influencer outreach, strategic media relations and direct-to-consumer events.
 
The development of the program was based on three key strategies.
·         Educate influencers, media and consumers about the personal and environmental benefits of using a Brita filtration system and reusable bottle.
·         Engage with influencers, media and consumers credibly in the right spaces from online to events.
·         Establish the brand as the ideal solution for creating a personally sustainable lifestyle.
 
Execution/Tactics
·         Recycling program – Partnering with Preserve®, leading maker of 100 percent recycled household goods, added credibility and made Brita eco-friendlier with launch of the first recycling solution for Brita filters. Consumers can return used filters at participating Whole Foods or the mail.
·         Social Media – Harnessed the power of “people like me” and launched the first-ever Twitter account for Clorox – to date have more than 1,000 engaged followers; Facebook page has more than 20,000 fans and a blog was added to FilterForGood.com, authored by six bloggers with unique perspectives on personal sustainability.
·         Student engagement
o   College FilterForGood Eco-Challenge provided five $10,000 grants to students with ideas to “green” their campus.  
o   Scholastic launched Brita-branded microsite with lessons to educate grades 3-5 about protecting natural resources and positive changes like the FilterForGood campaign.
·         Direct-to-consumer engagement – Brita served as official sponsor of two key events, allowing consumers and influencers direct engagement with the brand. Brita was the title sponsor of the September 2008 Climate Ride, a five-day bike ride from New York to Washington, D.C. to support climate advocacy projects. More than 150 cyclists supported the cause, drinking Brita-filtered water along the way from FilterForGood bottles. Brita sponsored the world-famous Sundance Film Festival in 2009, and activated the sponsorship by donating FilterForGood bottles and providing Brita water stations throughout the Festival - eliminating the need for 50,000 disposable water bottles. This provided a platform to reach consumers and influencers, and resulted in other high-profile events and tours requested Brita FilterForGood presence and support in FY09 and into FY10.
·         “The Biggest Loser” Integration – Continued Brita’s partnership with NBC’s popular weight loss show in 2009 and tapped into show’s passionate fan base through education on hydration and the importance of drinking the proper amount of water to fulfill lifestyle goals. The contestants, trainers and crew all use Brita filtration systems and FilterForGood bottles at all times, making the FilterForGood campaign a “badge” for responsible purchase and creating an impactful call-to-action for viewers to take the FilterForGood pledge at home to help them save money, live healthfully and reduce bottled water waste.
·         Media outreach – Expanded outreach to promote initiatives and organically inserted Brita into news stories supporting personal sustainability ideals.
 
Evaluation of Success
The FilterForGood 2.0 campaign continued to energize the brand with proven results not only through increasing sales, but redefining the brand as a key asset for a personally sustainable lifestyle.
·         The brand has become a pop culture icon – the Brita pitcher and FilterForGood bottle has become a “badge” for responsible purchase. From its partnership with NBC’s “The Biggest Loser” and the Sundance Film Festival – to relationships with Lady Antebellum (award-winning country music act) and students and teachers nationwide – Brita’s FilterForGood campaign is helping to set the standard for responsible water use.
·         FilterForGood has helped generate a year-over-year double digit sales increases that is breaking all-time records for the Brita brand.
·         Consumers are engaged across multiple social media platforms – and act as brand ambassadors for Brita and the FilterForGood campaign.
·         More than 149,000 people have taken the FilterForGood pledge, eliminating 159 million disposable bottles potentially sent to landfills.
·         Coverage in nearly 8,000 media outlets resulted in more than 326 million media impressions – including key outlets targeted by the Media Impact research.
·         The Brita brand is well positioned as an environmentally responsible, cost-effective and healthful product by consumers and media.
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