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Recycle Challenge Refinement Tips

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With a week left in the Refinement phase there’s still plenty of time to practice collaboration and create clarity around concepts. We've been so inspired by the buzzing of prototype proactivity – from Amanda’s paper prototype game that she tested with her younger family member, to Kenneth’s augmented reality app prototype which you can download and try at home. And we love how Trash Talk has divided their office into two competing teams to see who can recycle the most. Let's make the most of these final days with a few thought starters:  

1. What’s your pitch? 

Imagine potential implementers or supporters are just seeing your contribution for the first time. What’s your 30 second pitch? Consider how you might tidy up your post's content in a straightforward, clear way so your idea is immediately clear. Concisely explain: ‘Here’s the problem,’ ‘Here’s my solution that addresses that problem,’ ‘Here’s how it works,’ “Here’s what I’ve tested so far’ and ‘Here are my learnings.’  What else might you include to illuminate your process and discoveries? What might you remove or move further down in your post to keep it from feeling convoluted?

2. Consider videos

Videos are a great way of explaining your idea in a visual and engaging way. Many people appreciate being able to watch a 2 minute video instead of jumping into a long explanation. For inspiration, check out how Kickstarter uses videos to pitch ideas and don’t worry about not having experience in video editing. Feel free to use something onhand like your phone or laptop’s camera, ask a friend to film you or download an easy app like Spark or Vine. Sometimes just a simple recording of you breaking down your idea offers that extra dose of impact – and we love to see the faces behind all the fab concepts. For more tips, check out this post on adding visual goodness to your ideas.

3. Test your assumptions with real users 

We have been blown away with all of your physical prototyping and fleshed-out digital concepts – way to go! Before refining your ideas even further, let's step back and explore our assumptions about potential end-users. Do you believe that people will be motivated to engage with your idea in a particular way? Test those assumptions by gathering user feedback, exploring in-the-field and interviewing people with dynamic perspectives. Reach out to your friends, co-workers or even strangers – like the Bottles For Smiles team, which hacked existing bins to test their concept with random people on the street.  

As we move into the Evaluation phase next week, we will also be meeting up with our sponsors and advisors to launch in-depth conversations about impact potential and implementation for each of the ideas. Keep up all the good work!

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