How far should companies go in encouraging customers to live more sustainably? It is a fine line. Too much intervention can build resentment – too little can lead to accusations of complacency.

Hubbub is delighted to be partnering with IKEA in a pioneering new approach to customer engagement. Together over three years we aim to build a growing movement of households and communities who are actively living more sustainably and who are advocates for wider change.

The campaign is designed to build a growing momentum of change. In the first year, selected IKEA customers will receive direct support and guidance. In year two, the campaign will spread to communities around IKEA stores. In year three, there will be a wider call for action engaging with policy-makers and other companies. The impact of the campaign will be independently assessed by the University of Surrey. Results will be shared openly helping to create more informed debate around the challenges faced in helping households live sustainably.

A unique feature of the campaign is that in the first year 150 IKEA customers will each receive £500 which they can spend as they choose on IKEA’s most sustainable products. Participating households will be facing life changing moments such as moving home, having a baby, retiring, etc. as research indicates that at these times they will be more receptive to new ideas and routines.

The chosen households will be given a store tour to understand what products are available and why they have been selected. Personalised household visits will help them in their decision-making as well as informing them of the wider behaviour changes they can make to cut bills and follow a more sustainable lifestyle. Ongoing support and guidance will be provided helping them to overcome challenges and learn from others.

Households will be given social media training to enable them to share their stories with friends, families, neighbours and the wider community. Activities will take place in stores promoting the environmental messages. The University of Surrey will explore the context for actions taken by households understanding the barriers and opportunities that exist.

The first year will be a slight leap into the unknown. IKEA and Hubbub will listen carefully to what households are telling us. For IKEA, this information will be used to understand what new products and services can be developed to help customers live more sustainably. For Hubbub, the information will refine the behaviour change advice we provide and help to create more impactful community campaigns.

Hubbub is delighted to be supporting IKEA in what we believe is a unique approach to customer engagement with ambitious long-term objectives. We will keep you informed of research findings and share with you the stories from participating households.