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In 2000-01, the City of Los Angeles Stormwater Program (Stormwater Program) partnered with the County of Los Angeles to conduct the Program’s third annual mass media advertising campaign. This campaign was an immense outreach effort on the part of the County and the City. The combined partnership purchased approximately $1.2 million in advertising space.

This advertising campaign ran for 19 weeks from April – July 2001 using the radio, print, and outdoor mediums to reach the English and Spanish-speaking public. The target audiences for this campaign were the largest groups identified in the County of Los Angeles’ 1997 Stormwater Segmentation Study—Neat Neighbors and Fix-It-Foul-Ups. Since the demographics of these two groups overlap with Concerned Non-Contributors, the messages reached many individuals in this third group as well.

The print portion of this campaign delivered product-specific messages, attaching a “warning label” to images of five everyday items. This warning label explained that each seemingly harmless item could actually contribute to pollution if not disposed of correctly. The messages were problem/solution oriented, focusing on a small number of pollutants, as recommended by the Los Angeles County Stormwater/Urban Runoff Public Education Program Interim Evaluation, which was conducted immediately following the 1998 advertising campaign.

The pollutants highlighted in this campaign were pet waste, cigarette butts, fast food containers, and pesticides. These pollutants were selected based on the County of Los Angeles’ Stormwater Segmentation Study as those most likely to be contributed by the target audience. The advertisements appeared in nine publications. As available, advertisements were placed in relevant special sections (gardening, pet care, etc.) of these publications or near relevant editorial features. A total of 76 advertisements were placed in eight English-language newspapers and one Spanish-language newspaper.

Magazines and Newspapers

To supplement the mass media advertising campaign, the City placed the puppy advertisement in ten issues of The Pet Press (July 2000 – June, 2001), a monthly publication that reaches 44,000 dog owners in the San Fernando Valley.

To enhance the 2001 Mass Media Advertising Campaign partnership with the County of Los Angeles, the City purchased advertisements in the environmental supplement produced by the Daily News. This supplement ran on Earth Day, April 22, 2001 and contained advertisements highlighting the stormwater, used oil and household hazardous waste issues.


In partnership with the County of Los Angeles, the City of Los Angeles purchased 50 :30 second advertisements encouraging do-it-yourselfers to recycle their used motor oil during the NCAA College Basketball Conference on KCBS (Channel 2). (March 2001)

In September 2000, KTTV, Channel 11 did a news segment on the Los Angeles River Study being conducted by Stormwater Program staff.

In June 2001, then Stormwater Program Manager, Gary Lee Moore and then Assistant Division Manager, John Dorsey, appeared on KCAL Channel 9 during a 3-minute show highlighting the upcoming Heal the Bay sponsored, Bay Days.

CityView—The City of Los Angeles’ internal cable channel, CityView Channel 35 airs a weekly show entitled CityWorks, which highlights the activities of the City’s Department of Public Works. Channel 35 staff filmed a stormwater pollution education segment in the Los Angeles River for the show. The segment originally aired on Channel 35 in February 2000. Note: This segment continued to run a total of nine times between May and August of 2000.

For the beach clean-up event in May 2001, CityView did a two-minute segment, which aired on Channel 35’s weekly update show.


The radio portion of this campaign also delivered problem/solution oriented messages focusing on a small number of pollutants, but these advertisements used a different approach. Because the Los Angeles radio market is saturated with advertising competition, and the sheer number of stations broadcasting also creates fierce competition for the public’s attention to advertising messages, this part of the campaign pushed creative boundaries by strategically using language and sound effects to catch the public’s attention. The campaign included 60-second advertisements in English and Spanish.

The advertisements ran on local radio stations and included 1,805 spots. Sixty of the spots were placed during garden talk shows. These spots focused on the importance of using pesticides and fertilizers correctly.

In addition, to take advantage of public attention to traffic reports for the Los Angeles area and to build upon the momentum from the print and radio advertisements, the advertising campaign included 990 ten-second radio traffic report announcements (TRAs). TRAs are sponsorships of traffic reports and are read as a tagline to traffic reports. These TRAs were placed through the Metro Traffic Network and Shadow Traffic Network, which broadcasts traffic reports for Los Angeles area radio stations.

To supplement this mass media advertising buy, the City also purchased 26 :60 spots on KRLA’s weekly pet show “All About Pets” featuring Dr. Tiffany. The radio advertisement that was aired was “Dog Beep” which reminds pet owners to always pick up after their pets. “All About Pets” has a listenership of 40,000/week. These radio advertisements ran between September 2000 and March 2001.

The Stormwater Program wrote text for a :60 public service announcement targeting pet waste clean-up and distributed it to KRLA, All About Pets.

Radio Interviews

In June 2001, then Stormwater Program Manager Gary Lee Moore, appeared on KCRW, 89.9’s Which Way LA, with Warren Olney addressing the quality of Southern California beaches.

KOST 103.5 radio personalities Mark and Kim show off the stormwater poster with public education manager Joyce Amaro.