The Water Corporation of Western Australia sometimes faces a perplexing problem - their customers demand too much of their product!
When the product is a public resource such as water and it is in short supply, advertising is used to encourage customers to economise. The "Use Water Wisely" campaigns are one of the most public faces of the Water Corporation.
However, how do you measure the effectiveness of such campaigns? The situation is so unusual that traditional market research methods are difficult to apply. To add to the problem, water use is strongly dependent upon factors such as the time of year and the weather, since most water is used on gardens.
Despite the difficulty in measuring the effect, it is essential to assess whether the advertising campaigns are working to plan effectively.