We often start with good intentions to change our behaviours, such as shopping in a more sustainable way, but without being able to see the impact that you have, it can become very difficult to sustain those behaviours. This can be seen in many other areas of our lives (i.e. healthy eating) and can very easily become a barrier to entry for new processes and behaviour change.
There’s a behavioural science theory called ‘low perceived behaviour control’ – a lack of belief that your behaviour will have an impact – which we see occur with consumers attempting (and failing) to adopt more sustainable behaviours specifically. Therefore, key challenge for these sorts of services (like Loop) is to encourage shoppers to continue to use them. And enlightening the consumer in on how their contribution, no matter how small, is making a difference using positive reinforcement in a simple, interesting and tangible way is a way to do that.
It is said that the impact of switching just three items of the weekly shop using Loop could be enormous: if customers in the 10 stores switched their recyclable tomato ketchup, cola and washing up liquid bottles to the reusable Heinz Tomato Ketchup, Coca Cola and Ecover alternatives, the packaging would be used and reused more than two and a half million times a year – But what does that really mean? How much is that REALLY equal to? It’s tough to comprehend or imagine and could also be much better and more beneficial if personalised by tracking individual shopping.
There are some really great examples of brands that give consumers a sense of the impact their actions have with the likes of Oddbox and Bulb, just to name a few. They encourage their shoppers to keep going using light-hearted language, tangible comparisons and really great graphics.