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Marketing snapshot - Hortlink 2018, edition 1

Publication date: 29 March 2018

This Hort Innovation Nursery Fund marketing snapshot has been taken from Hort Innovation’s Hortlink 2018, edition 1.

Hort Innovation’s investment of the nursery marketing levy, through the Hort Innovation Nursery Fund, is all about the 202020 Vision – the movement to increase urban green space by 20 per cent by the year 2020. While the 202020 Vision is multi-faceted, involving work with green-space decision-makers, end users, communities and more, in late October 2017, the first consumer-facing campaign of the initiative was launched. Here’s a quick look at how it’s been going…

Plant Life Balance in a nutshell

It’s only been a few months since the 202020 Vision’s Plant Life Balance consumer campaign launched, with the program working to raise the profile of nursery products nationally with inspiring, practical content – and positive sales growth is being reported across the country.

The Plant Life Balance campaign aims to get Australians excited and confident about styling their homes with plants, while educating around two fundamental benefits of plants: improved air quality and wellbeing. The campaign is supported by research – with the science behind it developed by the R&D component of the Nursery Fund program – as well as the world’s first augmented-reality greening app. The app lets people experiment with more than 130 plant varieties in their own spaces to see what works, before they head out to their local nursery.

Curated by The Plant Hunter, seven style looks with both ‘indoor and outdoor plant pallets’ have been designed to inspire and motivate increased greening in small spaces. The app even allows users to rate their space and shows the level of air quality and wellbeing that their chosen plants bring.

Watch a quick video on the app here, and find it in the app store on your smartphone (it’s available for both Android and iOS). You can also see the consumer-facing Plant Life Balance website here.

The campaign’s reach so far

The consumer campaign is using technology and social media to connect with a target audience of women aged between 25 and 35 years (with and without children), to help build their confidence and inspire them to get more ‘plant life balance’ in their lives.

The Plant Life Balance app has had 37,000+ downloads since launch and counting.

To help drive awareness and consumer engagement, an integrated campaign has also been put to work, utilising public relations (PR), media partnerships, work with ambassadors, social media, digital advertising and influencer engagement – with campaign materials seen more 40 million times since launch, at the time of writing.

Gardening personality Jamie Durie kicked off the campaign as its official ambassador, and his involvement has sine allowed promotion of the campaign in prime-time TV spots on programs including Today, The Morning Show and The Daily Edition.

More than 450 local and international media pieces have so far appeared across TV, newspapers, digital platforms and through social media, with more than 4000 new plant lovers having joined Plant Life Balance’s social networks on Facebook and Instagram.

How you can get involved

Essential to the success of the program has been, and will continue to be, the engagement with and promotion of the campaign through independent retail nurseries. Retailer training events were held around the country last year, letting businesses know about the details of the campaign and the elements to bring it to life (as described in the R&D snapshot above).

For in-store promotion, branded point-of-sale kits were created which include bunting, plant tags, shelf wobblers, posters, staff badges and ‘cheat sheets’ for sales staff. These are free to any retail nursery who wants to get behind the campaign. So far, 98 retailers around the country having snapped up these kits, become Plant Life Balance accredited and have successfully begun using them in their businesses. Contact for more, as well as info on digital campaign assets.

Feedback from retail nurseries has been very positive. Tim’s Garden Centre in Campbelltown, NSW said: “[We’ve] found using the app in the process of selling and showing the customer how to use it has helped to seal the deal. The positive is that it turns the sale of one plant on the day into several with pots and potting mix etc. When talking to customers about what plants they want, how many they require to freshen up the air inside, as well as letting them know about the wellbeing benefits of having several, is the gentle push they need to purchase a few and not just the one they were popping in for. Some customers didn’t even know they needed an indoor plant until seeing the signage.”


These marketing activities are strategic levy investments in the Hort Innovation Nursery Fund