Gamifying Environmental Awareness: Meet Ma Petite Planète
Welcome back to our series of “Impact Stories”, where we introduce organizations that serve their communities - and the world - for the better. The common thread in this series is the power of automation, and how it can help organizations achieve their goals in a fast, efficient manner.
When legendary naturalist Sir David Attenborough addresses the United Nations Security Council with the warning that climate change is “the biggest threat to security that modern humans have ever faced,” we know the state of our planet is in peril.
But such a serious topic, with wide-ranging consequences like food production, access to fresh water, and weather-related disasters, can seem unconquerable on an individual level.
This is why it’s so important to combine our efforts when it comes to fighting climate change.
French association Ma Petite Planète (meaning My Little Planet) understood this wholeheartedly.
Their stance on the matter is “the planet is everybody’s business,” so they set out to create a program to inspire others to take small but meaningful steps toward environmental conservation in a fun, engaging way.
And to help streamline some of the processes that enable this exceptional program, they’ve turned to - you guessed right - automation.
Read on to learn more about Ma Petite Planète, and discover what they do and how they do it.
What is Ma Petite Planète?
Ma Petite Planète (MPP) is an organization that hosts team competitions that give players ecologically-themed challenges to complete in order to earn points.
With programs designed for both adults and students, the first step is assembling a team of 6 to 24 players. The players are then divided into two teams, and the game can begin.
Using the MPP app, teams and players try to complete as many challenges as they can during a three-week period. The challenges range from biking to work and planting a tree to other activities in categories like food, waste management, energy savings, and more.
The program was born from its founders’ desire to fight global warming, but also to inspire the people around them to take action against climate change in a fun and inspiring way.
Currently, most MPP players are in France, but the organization is on route to scale to the global stage - it’s already available in four other languages.
From an ecological perspective, the goal is to make environmental initiatives fun while also learning about our relationship to ecology through our personal lifestyles and habits.
Socially, the games help unite teams around common goals, and players report that they’ve been able to adopt more eco-friendly routines in their own lives after participating.
As the program expanded to almost a quarter of a million players since being launched in 2019, the organization discovered the need to manage data more efficiently to make processes easier for the employees and volunteers behind the scenes.
Since adopting Make in 2022, MPP has tried to assess tasks that seem time-consuming, repetitive, or simply unrewarding, and then look for ways to automate them to give time back to their workforce.
Let’s take a look at some of the processes they’ve automated.
1. Keep players informed during the game
MPP developed a process that adds game applicants’ emails to a list in SendFox, an email marketing tool.
Then, by integrating SendFox with Google Cloud Firestore (a document database for mobile apps), MPP can automatically share information about team rankings and stats, as well as information about specific challenges that are time-limited for players throughout the competition.
2. Support teachers before the start of student games
When a teacher downloads and signs up for the app, MPP is able to contact them directly to automatically suggest further resources and presentations to help them better understand and prepare for the challenges their students will tackle during the game.
And they achieved this with a Make-powered integration between Eventbrite and Airtable!
3. Keep data organized, actionable, and visual
User-friendly information is a must in any app, and MPP is no exception. With Make, they’re able to automatically create Notion pages that contain the full details of each and every challenge.
If a user wants to know more about a specific challenge, MPP can easily share the corresponding auto-generated Notion page and deliver a more immersive experience without adding clutter to their app.
How automation upped the game for Ma Petite Planète
Ma Petite Planète is careful not to place specific numbers on global carbon emissions saved through participation in the game, but they are confident that their program is making an impact.
Similarly, the impact of their use of automation isn’t easy to quantify, but the day-to-day results speak volumes.
Starting with the amount of time saved, Ma Petite Planète managed to slash time spent on manual data entry, including list creation, copy-pasting, and researching, saving many hours of staff time each week.
They’ve also seen a sharp increase in added value for this special program. Players can have the right information at their fingertips in an easy-to-use, visually pleasing format, with less hassle and time spent by those behind the scenes.
As a result, players can focus on the challenges of the game instead of searching for instructions or navigating a complicated app.
What’s next for Ma Petite Planète?
“Our objective: To automate all data manipulation tasks,” says Delphine Rousseau, MPP’s marketing acquisition manager. “We still have a long way to go until we fully use Make’s potential, but we are on the right track.”
Beyond automating with Make, Ma Petite Planète’s main goal is to increase its impact on a worldwide scale.
The organization is on a mission to become the go-to source for team-building activities throughout France, and to eventually become known and recognized for their ecological impact throughout Europe and beyond.
Their ambition of welcoming over 1 million players by the end of 2024 is lofty but certainly attainable.
For the pupil-focused challenges, Ma Petite Planète hopes to become aligned with France’s Ministry of National Education and become integrated into school curricula nationwide.
One thing, however, seems clear: They’re leading the charge against climate change with a fun, community-based approach, and they’re generating results that everyone can be proud of.