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Marketing spotlight 2021/22

Publication date: 4 November 2022

Greener Spaces Better Places encourages Aussies to buy more plants

Hort Innovation is responsible for investing the nursery marketing levy into a range of activities to drive awareness and consideration. Here’s a quick look at some of the activities and achievements in 2021/22.

Consumer marketing

In 2021/22, the consumer marketing campaign for nursery involved three key activities: the Greener Spaces Better Places brand relaunch, School of Thumb consumer video content series, and social media activity.

Greener Spaces Better Places brand launch

In February 2022, the Greener Spaces Better Placesbrand was launched to combine the Greener Spaces Better Places government program with the former consumer brand Plant Life Balance. Greener Spaces Better Places is now the overarching brand for the nursery marketing program, creating a unified movement that brings the power of plants into the lives of all Australians. It acknowledges that a greener Australia starts at home, but continues into the country’s streets, suburbs, and cities. A complimentary mixture of media channels was used to launch the rebrand, including out-of-home advertising, public relations, an ambassador partnership, and social media.

Out of home

An out-of-home campaign ran from February to April 2022. Street furniture and large digital advertisements were showcased near nurseries in Western Australia, Queensland, South Australia, New South Wales and Victoria.

Public relations

A national media campaign introduced the new Greener Spaces Better Places brand to the key target audience. Partnering with Australian landscape designer and television presenter Charlie Albone from Better Homes and Gardens as a brand ambassador, public relations activity aimed to inspire and encourage Australians to feel confident in incorporating plants into their living spaces with practical tips.

Strong traction was received with media, with a total of 121 pieces of coverage across major media channels, which provided more than 64 million opportunities to be seen. The channels included The Morning Show, 7 News, The West Australian, Herald Sun, WA To da y,The Daily Telegraph, The Mercury, The Advertiser,Brisbane Times, Sydney Morning Herald, The Age,Sunday Life and Women’s Day.

Social media

A social media partnership with brand ambassador Charlie Albone was used to extend the reach of the campaign’s message. Charlie Albone was able to add value and bring a face to the new Greener Spaces Better Places brand, and his posts outperformed other content in terms of the amount of engagement, people reached, saves and profile activity. The Greener Spaces Better Places Instagram account grew exponentially over the last year. This was achieved through consistent posting, creating engaging content for the community (including user-generated content) and having clear content pillars. In turn, the campaign has educated consumers and enhanced their social media experience.

During 2021/22, the social media campaign:

  • Achieved over nine million impressions (number of times content appears on user's screen), a 902 per cent increase from the previous year.
  • Reached over seven million consumers (number of people viewing the content), an 840 per cent increase from the previous year.
  • The Greener Spaces Better Places Instagram account has increased followers by some 13,500 people.

School of Thumb consumer content series

School of Thumb is a horticultural content series that leverages a group of colourful expert growers as the ‘watchers’, the experts solve the public’s horticultural and green space queries Australia-wide, hosted by stand-up comedian and television host Claire Hooper. In June 2022, the series completed production of its first three episodes in Western Australia (for launch in early 2022/23), with more videos scheduled for production, likely in NSW and VIC throughout the year.

School of Thumb sets to equip the general public with simple gardening skills and knowledge to build and grow green spaces across Australia. The series which will primarily be seen on Instagram initially through organic and paid content aims to educate and inspire the everyday Australian on greenlife.

Government campaign


‘Map-Listen-Learn-Connect’ was the main ‘always-on’ feature of the government campaign. It involved the stakeholder management of several key bodies in the green urban space. These meetings included strategic recurring working groups and a peer review of the upcoming National Urban Green Infrastructure Handbook for Standards Australia, in partnership with Living Melbourne. This ensured Greener Spaces Better Places sustained its position as Australia’s leading voice in the green space.

Let’s Grow

The nursery R&D levy-funded project Consumer usage and attitudes research (NY20002) produced a report developed into a resource for local governments to engage their communities in private land urban greening. The Let’s Grow report was launched nationally at the Local Governments for Sustainability (ICLEI) ‘Cities With Nature’ webinar in November 2021. Approximately 150 policymakers, practitioners, innovators, and institutions connected to urban greening and planning attended the well-received session. Briefings were also provided to 453 people in local and state governments’ roles across all states, along with a local presenter talking about the role of planning in private land urban greening.

Urban Greeners’ Resource Hub 2.0

Greener Spaces Better Places teamed up with Living Melbourne to refresh the Urban Greeners’ Resource Hub. This one-stop, curated collection of best practice tools, guides, resources, and case studies helps urban greening professionals protect and enhance Australia’s urban forests and green cover in towns and cities. The Urban Greeners’ Resource Hub was developed in close consultation with technical experts across research, industry, and local government. Based on community feedback, content and functionality have been updated to provide urban greening professionals with a new and improved hub.

Industry campaign

Growers are an essential stakeholder in all parts of the nursery marketing program. Throughout the 2021 marketing campaign, the nursery industry was engaged in the program to extend its reach and drive the end goal of increased plant sales for all stakeholders.

This included activities such as:

  • A bi-monthly double-page spread in the Hort Journal.
  • Updates to the Living Network through a monthly Living Network marketing email. This e-newsletter was sent to over 3,600 urban greening professionals, practitioners and researchers. It provides a monthly round-up of news, research releases, events, case studies and projects around Australia. Living Network subscriptions increased by 15 per cent this financial year.
  • Ongoing connection with the Nursery & Garden Industry Victoria (NGIV) as part of the program’s ‘Map-Listen-Learn-Connect’ stream and any connections are facilitated to industry.

A School of Thumb asset kit and user guide was also developed for retail nurseries. Its distribution strategy is currently in development for rollout in 2022/23. The asset kit includes social media content for nurseries to use across their own channels, downloadable and print-ready design assets (including point of sale cards, shelf wobblers and plant tags) and instructions on how to run a School of Thumb event.

In 2021/22 the Hort Innovation Marketing function underwent a significant shift in their approach to investing marketing levies. You can read more about this in the 2021/22 Hort Innovation Company Annual Report at