Awareness of the problems caused by climate change is growing. It’s a regular topic of conversation now, whether you’re in the fashion industry, any other industry, or not. Pollution of our streets, rising temperatures too hot to bear in some countries around the world, severe flooding; we are seeing extremities more and more.
It can be overwhelming, but each of us can make a difference in our own way. We will all have to make changes to our lifestyles eventually to combat the effects of global warming. And yes, just 100 companies are responsible for 71% of the world’s global emissions, and we desperately need them to change. But each of us can have an impact. We can demand change by being part of the change.
Where to start? Well, meet Tammy, founder of SoCo Lifestyle App; an app designed to help you make those little lifestyle changes, in a fun and thought provoking way, one step at a time.
SoCo is a challenge app focused around leading a more sustainable lifestyle. Tell us how it works?
SoCo is a new breed of platform that incentivises positive behaviour change. By setting simple, everyday challenges that unlock feel-good rewards, it encourages a more socially conscious way of living. This harnesses the collective power of people and brands who want to make the world a better place.
- In the SoCo app, a brand sets sustainable, fun, habit-changing challenge (e.g. walking
- 11,000 steps a day, using a keepcup, going veggie)
- SoCo users accept the challenge + start working towards the goal
- Once achieved, an exciting reward from the brand is unlocked (e.g. free boxing class, free coffee, 50% discount code)
- The result, everyone wins! The planet is positively impacted. People feel good about their habit-change. And brands connect with members of the public who value their sustainability and socially responsible ethics.
What sparked the inspiration for the concept? How did you come up with the company?
SoCo is my own melting pot of ideas. I have worked in 3 different areas during my career – marketing and business development in the UK and Sri Lanka, grassroots charities in Malawi and Uganda, and then sustainability back in London again.
SoCo has grown out of the meeting point of these 3 worlds – finding a mutual place where people, the planet, and business can all work together and benefit from positive behaviour change.
I came up with the first version of SoCo in 2017 and then it went through various iterations until I finally had a concept that I was happy with, and at the very end of 2018 and quit my job to pursue it.
What is the ultimate mission for SoCo?
To encourage everyone into more environmentally and socially conscious habits.
There can be a sense of impending doom and helplessness when it comes to saving the planet but the collective power and impact that we can have for good is quite amazing. During a pilot when I was developing “proof of concept” – I challenged people to walk more, it was just a small group, 8 people. They walked over one million steps which was the equivalent of offsetting a cars emissions for 14 days – it was staggering.
A lot of my knowledge was acquired in the years prior – I had worked for charities and focused on corporate social responsibility and sustainability, slowly building in-depth knowledge of areas of concern and ways individuals, businesses and governments should be tackling them. Spending time in the charitable sector, one thing that will always stood out to me is the broader impact of how education can transform societies, especially when applied to the education of young girls.
Oohh that’s tricky… I am quite an active person so challenges that keep me moving are always great. However, as a vegetarian, the challenge with La Fauxmagerie was mouth wateringly motivational!
There are some really simple and really effective ways that we can all start making a positive difference:a) Make a decision to only eat meat 3 days a week. It’s the single biggest way any individual to reduce their carbon footprint.
b) Switch to a green energy supplier – this takes 5 minutes and you can support the renewables sector whilst also basking in the comfort that your cosy home this winter is heated by the wind and sun.
c) Try to reduce the amount of online clothes shopping you do – 70% of clothes returned online go straight to landfill. If you want to browse and try on lots of stuff then head to the shops (if you can). Only order clothes online if you are fairly certain you are going to want to keep it after trying it on. The fashion industry has a bigger carbon footprint than the aviation industry!
SoCo Lifestyle App is still new to the market. Where do you hope to take it in the next 5 years?
5 years! Ah! I’m working on 12 month plans right now :)
It’s all very exciting and one thing that I am finding a real joy in is new users finding the app and building great partnerships with brands. As SoCo grows it will be inspiring to see the collective impact stats grow – our strap line is “changing habits to change the world” and that’s what I plan on doing!
In terms of expansion, I would love to see SoCo grow not only in the UK but also in the US, Canada and Australia.
There are so many small businesses and innovators being part of change, and SoCo Lifestyle App is one of them. Saywood collaborated with SoCo Lifestyle App for the Fashion For Good challenge, to get you thinking about what’s in your wardrobe, rewearing, restyling and versatility, and what you love and can mend. Every challenge completed is rewarded. This is such a fantastic app for getting us all engaged in simple steps we can take to change our habits.
If you’d like to get involved in the SoCo Lifestyle App challenges, and be part of change, you can download the app here.
Change habits, change the World.