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​2016 Beach Renourishment Public Information Program

In June of 2016, the Town of Hilton Head was scheduled to embark on its third large-scale beach renourishment project, a project that recognized the town's beaches as a vital asset to residents and the economy. It was crucial to give residents, visitors, prospective visitors and businesses real-time information about what was happening where and for how long on Hilton Head's famous beaches. About 1,000 feet of beach access per day were restricted by operations.

Officials were keenly sensitive to how much the project, with its noise, pipes and equipment, could disrupt the public's enjoyment of the beach. For instance, Hilton Head officials knew they had to keep local restaurants in the loop, just as they had to update that bride in Ohio who was planning a beach wedding.

Teaming up with the Hilton Head Island-Bluffton Chamber of Commerce, the town met with representatives of hotels, resorts, home and villa rental companies, and affected property owner associations to present an overview. They formed a beach renourishment communications task force to develop a toolkit for local businesses that included talking points, FAQs, email confirmation verbiage, social media messages, newsletter/blog verbiage, a project timeline map, project brochure and video.

In 2016, the renourishment project section of the town's website drew 91,063 visitors accounting for nearly 127,000 page views. There were nearly 3,000 subscribers to the town's e-subscription "2016 Beach Renourishment Project" topic. By the end of the project, more than 11,500 "likes" to the town's Facebook page extended the social media reach of project notifications to nearly 200,000 people.

The town and its chamber partner produced a project video that was distributed to hotels and other stakeholders. Plus, they printed and distributed 30,000 brochures, which were passed out around the community.

Contact René Phillips at renep@hiltonheadislandsc.gov or 843.341.4792.