Creative Gallery on Sustainability Communications


"Use Only What You Need." For Denver Water
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Description / Synopsis

Use Only What You Need is one of the most successful and widely acclaimed conservation campaigns ever. The campaign helped to change the culture of an entire city and nearly accomplish a ten-year conservation goal in just one summer.


In 2006, Denver, Colorado was coming out of the second worst drought in its history and water consumption began to soar. As a result, the Denver Water Board set a ten-year goal to reduce use by 22% of pre-drought levels. They believed it was necessary to create a culture of conservation in the growing city.


A key consumer insight changed the conversation and shaped the campaign. We found that while many people were not open to conserving because it meant giving up something, everyone believed in cutting out waste. And the creative articulation of that strategy, Use Only What You Need, was created.


After the first summer the campaign ran, water use dropped 21%, nearly reaching the ten-year goal of a 22% reduction. Since 2006, the campaign has continued to deliver equally impressive results each year.

Title"Use Only What You Need."
AgencySukle Advertising
AdvertiserDenver Water
Brand NameDenver Water
Product NameConservation
Sustainability Themes Climate Change & Atmosphere, Consumption Patterns, Desertification & Drought, Education & Awareness, Freshwater, Waste & Recycling
Date of First Publication 05/06/2006
Country of ProductionUnited States of America
TypeOutdoor / Out of Home
TaglineUse even less.
Awards -Graphis Advertising Annual for The Denver 50
-The Venice Festival of Media for The Obies
-Lürzer’s Int’l for Communication Arts Advertising Annual
Account Director: Dana Cohen
Account Executive: Mackie Sweatman
Art Director: Andy Dutlinger
Copywriter: Elliot Nordstrom ,  Jim Glynn ,  Zac Spector
Creative Director: Mike Sukle ,  Jeff Euteneuer ,  Pedro Saldarriaga
Others: Matt Carpenter ,  Michon Schmidt
Photographer: Jamie Kripke ,  Richard Feldman ,  Tony D’orio
Print Producer: Julie Mimmack