Lonza Successfully Tackles the Myths About Salt-Water Pools

December 08,2015

Alpharetta, GA (USA), 8 December 2015 – Lonza, one of the leading suppliers of pool and spa water treatment chemicals in North America, announced today that its recently launched campaign to help debunk the misperceptions of salt-water pools has received more than 160 million impressions. The Salt or Chlorine? marketing campaign, launched in May 2015, educated pool and spa dealers dealers and consumers on the differences between traditional chlorine and salt-water sanitizing. Lonza utilized a variety of online, TV and print communications, as well as celebrity spokespeople, in order to increase awareness of the comparative benefits and drawbacks of traditional chlorine and salt-water sanitizing systems.

The campaign was based on the assumption that the growth in popularity and sales of salt-water pools is fueled by misunderstandings. Consumers have reported surprise and dissatisfaction when they discover that salt-water pools are not maintenance free, can erode metal objects and have associated high electrical costs. Consumer dissatisfaction and dealer misperceptions concerning the profitability of the sale of salt-water pool equipment and products versus ongoing sales of traditional chlorine products continue to exist in the pool distributor community.1 The Salt or Chlorine? campaign is designed simply to educate the public and dealers on the facts regarding both traditional chlorine and salt-water sanitizing to help each group make informed decisions about what is best for their needs.

Known as a pool and spa chemical industry leader, Lonza launched the multifaceted, integrated, educational campaign to provide truthful, research-based insights into salt-water pools and the benefits of traditional chlorine-treated pools. The program addresses the confusion that exists about different types of pools via an informative website with video and downloadable resources. Four-time Olympic Gold medalist Janet Evans and HGTB host Monica Pederson also aided in the efforts to educate the public by appearing on television shows and in other major media with messages about the advantages and disadvantages of traditional chlorine sanitization compared with salt chlorine generators.

Lonza-sponsored research prior to the campaign showed that most consumers falsely believed that a salt pool is chlorine free, uses less chlorine, requires less maintenance, has no environmental impact and is less expensive to maintain than traditional chlorine pools. The campaign included surveying distributors and retailers of pool products. Typical anecdotes were similar to that from Cal Boothby, owner of Redlands Pool & Spa in Redlands, CA (USA). Cal explained that, in his experience, many salt-pool users “end up converting back to traditional chlorine when it’s time to replace the cell because they learn how expensive it really is to maintain.” 

Campaign advertisements, social media postings and internet searches secured a combined 2.9 million impressions from May to September 2015. The myth that salt pools are chlorine free and the myth that salt pools produce or use less chlorine than a non-salt pool generated the most interest. Total online impressions to date are more than 160 million, with a click-through rate six times the industry average – showing the interest and demand for accurate information regarding salt-water pools.

The initial success of the campaign and the demand for more information from consumers and pool professionals will bolster efforts to expand the campaign’s reach in the years to come.

Notes for Editors

1Based on a 2012 Lonza-sponsored study comprised of 22 in-depth interviews with industry participants.

More information about “Salt or Chlorine?” is on www.SaltorChlorine.org. Background about Olympic Gold medal winner Janet Evans is on www.JanetEvans.com

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