Aqua Carpatica created a water purity test so that Romanians could self-test water quality for nitrates. Results were posted online to publicly disclose water quality problems. Sales of Aqua Carpatica’s bottled water increased by 40%.
Intensive farming involves using tons of chemical fertilizers called nitrates. Some of them reach the ground water and then the water we drink.
Romania is number one in Europe when it comes to nitrate pollution. It has over 2,000 towns and villages with poisoned water sources. Also, it’s the only EU country that doesn’t compel bottled water producers to disclose the nitrate content. Romanians are unaware of all of this — sometimes with grave consequences.
Aqua Carpatica, the water with the lowest nitrate content in Romania, changed all this with the purity test, a little paper strip that gave people the power to know what kind of water they drank, available in all the major supermarkets.
- Step 1: Dip it in water.
- Step 2: Wait for 60 seconds.
- Step 3: Check the nitrate content.
- Step 4: Post the result online so everyone can see it.
TV stars, actors, journalists, athletes, and more than 100 bloggers joined the campaign [560+ organic mentions] and started a national conversation about nitrates [3,141,366 unpaid viewership]. Our Facebook page reached one million fans. Aqua Carpatica had the largest ever sales increase [+40% sales] for a water brand.
Most importantly, all over Romania, people pitched in to fill the nitrate map. Over 1,600 tap waters, 127 rivers and lakes, and 687 wells were tests and shared via our online app.
Aqua Carpatica ‘Purity Test’ TV Commercials
Three TV ads — The Snail, The Bridge and The Ducks — sneaked the word nitrates into familiar Romanian children’s songs about water. Shock value was achieved by juxtaposing the innocence of a child’s play with the existence of an invisible threat: nitrates.
Water Purity Tests
600,000 test kits were made available to consumers at retail chain stores, public events, and as magazine inserts. A booklet titled Do you know what you’re drinking? was packaged with the water purity tests.
Website and Social Media Engagement
After testing the water they drank — whether lake, tap, or spring water — Romanians were encouraged to upload the water quality test results online to share the results with others.
Aqua Carpatica’s Facebook community grew to over 1 million fans. Without any incentive other then helping others, users shared their nitrate concentrations on the Purity Test map, together with photos and comments, becoming one of the most engaged brand communities on Facebook.