This year we set an ambition to support councils across the UK by running a series of Neat Streets Roadshows. Here are some of the top tips we’ve been sharing.

In 2015, Hubbub launched its first ever litter campaign, Neat Streets, testing new ways to cut litter using best practice on behaviour change. Since then, Neat Streets has evolved, taking on new locations and litter challenges. We even launched a social enterprise to sell the world’s first voting ashtray!

Throughout our journey, local authorities have continued to be intrigued by our ideas and keen to replicate them. Rather than keeping any secrets to ourselves, we set an ambition at the start of 2017 to build the capacity of councils across the UK to run behaviour change campaigns like Neat Streets.

Working with our partners McDonald’s, LARAC and CIWM, we have run 5 free Neat Streets Roadshows across the UK, so far engaging 134 guests from 75 local authorities. We are delighted to have met 94% of attendees’ expectations, with nearly half saying we far exceeded them.

Roadshow takeaways

For those who missed the Roadshows, here are our top 5 takeaways for running successful litter campaigns:

1) Gain Insights

Before you try to change behaviours, you need to work out who you are targeting and what makes them tick. For our Neat Streets campaign in Villiers Street, we did a thorough process of observational research, interviews and litter counts. In doing so, we got a true insight into what was really happening, which was often different to what people told us! From this, we identified the specific behaviour we wanted to focus and opportunities to start nudging.

2) Visualise

People are more likely to change their behaviour if they can see the negative consequence of their actions on the environment – quite often if litter is small, it’s easy to forget this. For the launch of the #StreetsAhead campaign in Brighton & Hove, we created a huge giant fish installation made out of litter collected from the beach by local volunteers. This was put up in a prime spot on Brighton’s busy promenade to shock passers-by and to provoke conversation.

3) Be Playful

People have aspirational attitudes and want to be inspired. Too much doom and gloom is a turn-off. We’ve found that a playful approach will engage people better and also make the job of delivering a campaign much more fun! Our Trashconverter van toured the Forest of Dean, inviting people to trade in litter for treats such as hot drinks, flowers and seeds, reaching nearly 2,500 people in just two weeks. Southend Business Improvement District took this principle seriously by asking ‘What’s your favourite sex toy?’ on a Ballot Bin located outside Ann Summers!

4) Build Community

Our experience tells us that we all love to be part of the crowd, and no one likes being the social outlier. If you can build a sense of community into your campaign or ‘FOMO’, people are more likely to get involved and to take on new behaviours. At the start of our litter campaigns, we always create a Community Gallery, showcasing recognisable people from the local area. We also work closely with community groups who have limitless local expertise, which follows onto the final point… 

5) Collaborate!

You don’t have to act alone. Litter is an issue that is important to many, from councils, to companies, charities and the public. When creating a behaviour change campaign, don’t just think about yourselves. Create a collaborative campaign where everyone has a vested interest. We wouldn’t have reached our goal to recycle half a million coffee cups in April for the Square Mile Challenge unless we’d engaged the City of London, 35 businesses, 9 major retailers and many more!

Planning a new campaign?

If you want to run a campaign but would like additional support, we can help you. This could include a range of support such as; project delivery and management, assisting with PR, guidance on measuring impact or provision of design assets.

Please get in touch to discuss this further.