CASE HISTORY AND SAMPLE CLIPS
Cutting through the Clutter to Get Press on an Amusement Park Ride
Raging Waters, a large water park based in San Dimas, Calif., enlisted The Bohle Company to introduce Amazon Adventure, a new multi-million dollar attraction.
Major competition was expected from Six Flags Magic Mountain and Disneyland, both of whom were introducing major new attractions that summer. Geography was also a problem; the water park is more than 30 miles from television stations and the Los Angeles Times, key to building local attendance
Of primary concern, however was that the new ride would require more than 500,000 gallons of water at a time when daily news reports tracked Southern California’s worsening drought.
The Bohle Company faced the water issue head on. How had the park received approval for a new ride in the middle of the water rationing? Our discovery process uncovered an interesting fact: conservation measures implemented in the months since the last operating season had resulted in water savings far greater than would be needed for the new ride. Several grass areas that had previously needed to be watered had been concreted, the park installed a new drip system for flowers and made a major effort to plug leaks everywhere resulting in a significant drop in water usage.
After compiling a list of the water-saving changes and corresponding statistics, we now had a positive positioning for the park. Raging Waters could showcase the park as a positive example of responsible water use during mandatory city rationing. What’s more, we could promote that thousands of “dry” Californians could come to the park — over and over, all summer instead of “using” the hose in their backyard to keep cool.
Combining water usage statistics, rationing allowances and information about the new attraction, we created a comprehensive press package that allowed news and entertainment media to present a newsworthy story about the drought and use the new attraction, and the entire park as a positive corporate role model.
We contacted local water district officials and coordinated positive written and visual testimonial about Raging Waters’ conservation results. This positive commendation was included as a “stuffer” in local residents’ water bills and advertised a park discount for households reducing water use. A video “clip” featuring water district officials applauding Raging Waters’ efforts was sent to the television stations.
Reporters were offered press tours of the facility, including behind-the-scenes looks at efforts to recirculate “run-off” water, shade waiting areas to reduce evaporation and seal flume cracks to reduce water waste.
To further convince media Raging Waters was worth the lengthy drive, reminder mailings were sent to print, television and radio emphasizing the diverse Southern California typography. The mailings emphasized that although West Los Angeles beaches often hosted unusually overcast days, Raging Water’s Inland Empire home was a sunny place for a traditional summertime hot weather story.
Los Angeles television stations including KNBC, KCBS, KABC, KCAL and KCOP and radio stations KFWB and KFI, included water conservation coverage featuring Raging Waters’ efforts. Particularly impressive was KCBS’s broadcast of three segments
about the conservation efforts, including a live remote from the park for the station’s “Daily Planet” feature. Extensive print coverage about water conservation efforts, the attraction opening and special events at the park included USA Today, The Los Angeles Times, The Los Angeles Daily News, The San Gabriel Valley Tribune and Highlander Publications. Total print coverage included more than 340 clippings, 250 calendar listings and 100 black & white and color photos.
Best of all, gate attendance increased, including admission of the park’s four-millionth visitor.