Brazil is no stranger to devastating droughts, but they're usually in the arid, impoverished northeast region of the country. This time it's the country's economic powerhouse Sao Paulo that is suffering the worst water shortage in its history. There is no formal water rationing -- yet -- but a campaign is picking up speed to take pride in a dusty, dirty car because not washing it conserves about 500 liters of water, multipled by more than seven million cars in the city of Sao Paulo alone.
The Nature Conservancy and Sao Paulo agency Africa started the #NaoChoveNaoLavo (NoRainNoWashing) campaign a month ago with social media. Now they're selling it with a video of a guy who pulls into a car wash and is mesmerized by the young woman in a tight top and tiny shorts who slithers along the hood of his car while making slow, provocative cleaning motions. Except she doesn't actually use any water, or remove any of the grime. Instead, we see at the end that she's written "NoRainNoWashing" on the windshield in dust. Message received.
Marketers are joining the cause. Mitsubishi, also an Africa client, posted a video that alternates racing cars tearing through dusty terrain with shots of shiny trophies in various sizes and shapes. Title cards explain "Getting your car dirty has already won you a lot of trophies. Now the prize is even bigger." The next shot is of a trophy-like clear glass full of water, followed by the words "During the water crisis, don't wash your car."