Fire Sense is a state-sponsored campaign serving to educate Utah citizens and visitors on wildfire prevention. Fire sense is common sense. The trick is just using it. You already know coals or sparks plus dry grass equals a lot of trouble, so the next time you’re camping, shooting, or otherwise enjoying the great outdoors in this great state of ours, use your brain before things get too hot to handle.
MISSION: Getting Utahns to take personal responsibility for fire safety
To reach and influence an audience that already feels like it knows about fire safety, we framed our desired behaviors as “fire sense”. Instead of depicting the behaviors as restrictive, they become common sense – something this audience values highly.
Fire Sense has grown in the past few years
It is important to note that while the foundational strategy of Fire Sense may not have changed much in the last few years, the tactics and approaches we took each year did.
In year 1 of Fire Sense, we focused on helping Utah understand the problem they were facing. We identified the basics of Fire Sense and brought awareness to a solution for human-caused wildfires.
In year 2, we made education our top priority. By identifying the top 5 most important behaviors, we were able to make real progress in changing how Utahns behaved around fires and fire hazards.
In year 3, we took this education further by refreshing our messages and taking it directly to many of the markets and audiences that needed it most.
Years 4-5 of Fire Sense
In the future of Fire Sense, we aim to further educate through a more surgical distribution of our message and using new behavior change techniques to help people take personal responsibility for fire safety.
Complete with our own Fire Sense Campaign Toolkit, we aim to provide the state of Utah with wildfire prevention information and messaging that speaks to Utah. The use of billboards, social media, media, public service announcements, partnerships, and various other methods help us achieve this. We serve Utah to help prevent human-caused wildfires through adapting behaviors. https://utahfiresense.org/
- Amplify messaging and start earlier to combat increases in wildfire fuels and seasonal severity
- Educate the public about misperceptions and complacency due to higher fuel levels and early precipitation
- Create plan for strategic reactivity depending on the upcoming year
- Strengthen rural messaging, especially in high-risk counties
- Provide strategic tools for fire mitigation among target audiences
- Improve on-site messaging within wilderness/recreation settings
- Expand statewide paid, social, earned, and non-traditional media marketing reach
- Work with news networks to brand and highlight Fire Sense within network conversations
- Expand target audiences to represent multicultural recreators.
- Run additional spring debris burning phase
- Enhance opportunities for messaging from local fire suppression departments
- Expand community partnerships
- Utah State Fair, Local Rodeos, Cattle Auctions, IFA, Scheels, Home Depot, TNT/Phantom Fireworks, University campuses, OTV retailers, state parks, and Jiffy Lube.
For the past three years, we have seen a steady decline in human-caused fires across Utah. Our goal is to expand our messaging to locations and communities in rural areas over this next year. We also want to partner with other organizations that want to help spread the wildfire prevention message to recreationists. We will continue to target high-traffic areas. Utah is a highly diverse recreational dream. We want to continue to reach our tourists and travelers who enjoy Utah’s landscapes.