How do you keep Scotland stunning when staycations and daytripping (and, therefore, littering) is on the rise?
Zero Waste Scotland’s ‘Scotland is Stunning – Let’s Keep It That Way’ campaign to encourage protection of the local environment made use of TikTok stars to get the attention of under-25s, and ended up winning Best Cause-led Influence Campaign at this year’s Online Influence Awards.
Communications programme manager Claire Munro shares the aims of the campaign and the important role of comms for making a difference.
How did it feel to win Best Cause-led Influence Campaign?
Is it a cliché to say over the moon?! I was thrilled, as were the project team colleagues and partners. It’s amazing to get such high profile for a campaign we all loved working on and really enjoyed.
What was the original brief for the campaign?
We developed it in tandem with colleagues who were reporting crisis-levels of littering, related to specific issues. People were socialising outdoors much more because of COVID-19 restrictions. We knew that Scotland’s tourism industry was reopening on 15 July, there would be more people at home, and so there was a need and an opportunity for a positive national campaign targeting staycationing and daytripping Scots – in particular, families and young people under 25 – which could be customised and rolled out at local level by partners.
We also developed campaign assets that would work in contexts we knew, from research and stakeholder input, were litter flashpoints or iconic Scottish locations: urban parks, beaches, lochsides, mountains, wildlife. We wanted to use new (for us) digital channels to reach our younger audiences. We knew people would be desperate to get out and about, but we wanted to inspire them to protect our environment at the same time.
What most excited you and your team about it?
The fact that we spotted an opportunity to do something we knew would benefit a lot of people, partners and the environment. This was a situation where we knew comms could help cut through and make a difference, and we had the skills, contacts, enthusiasm and support to make it happen.
What do you love most about working on campaigns like this one?
Creativity, excitement, seeing your work and ideas bear fruit, working with a great team.
How important are influencers for campaigns like this?
Influencers were essential to this campaign, in particular for the under-25 audience, who we wouldn’t have been able to reach as directly or persuasively via traditional media channels, stakeholder channels or traditional toolkit, and gave an already strong campaign real pop.
Working with TikTok influencers was an innovation for Zero waste Scotland. With the Scotland is Stunning campaign, we really showed it could work by giving the influencers Littlest Chicken, Wear What Works and Rona McMillan a bit of freedom to do something creative and memorable. Littlest Chicken’s song ‘Glesga green needs a clean’ definitely was and raised a laugh.
The engagement each influencer achieved was beyond our expectations for promoted content and showed the appeal of the message and the influencers’ creative treatment of it.
What have been the main challenges for your team this year?
As with practically everyone on the planet, I’d have to say COVID. The resulting challenges have included changing working patterns, potential health issues, juggling of work and family responsibilities. And for our team, a bigger workload and more high-profile projects. This has brought its own pressures at times, but has also revealed our resilience, creativity and ability to collaborate and help each other out.
What have been your highlights of 2020?
Definitely this! And seeing our team, and all our colleagues, pulling together to do great work.