BTB_Hero Video 15sec_v12.mp4
Behaviour change + Content & creative for City of Whittlesea Local Council

Be the Boss

Empowering young
people to Be The Boss
of their gambling


As online gambling and sports betting become increasingly popular, the problems associated with it increase as well, particularly amongst younger people. Icon was engaged by the City of Whittlesea, funded by the the Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation, to work with the Youth Affairs Council of Victoria (YACVic) to deliver a campaign which:

  • Raised awareness of the risks of online gambling and sports betting among young people; and

  • Empowered them to take charge of their gambling and make smarter choices.

Be the Boss social tile
Hand holding mobile phone

The effects of online gambling
in the local community

Online gambling is increasing at a rapid rate and is especially popular with people who bet on sports, with young men in particular experiencing harm as a result. The VRGF ‘Weighing up the odds study’ (2018) reported that of all young men who bet on sport, 70% were found to be at risk of, or already experiencing, gambling harm.

For young Victorians this harm comes in the form of family and relationship problems, emotional and psychological issues, and financial losses. It also directly affects their health with comorbidities including smoking and alcohol consumption, as well as substance abuse or dependence and mental health issues.

Working with young locals
to co-design a campaign

The project engaged 15 young Whittlesea locals to co-design a campaign with Icon Agency based on their lived experiences of online gambling and sports betting, and find the best way to communicate the risks and self-help strategies to their peers.

The stories heard from the young locals were all strikingly similar: young people are gambling more to fit in with their peers, and they are finding it increasingly distressing to see their friends being harmed by gambling, both financially and emotionally.

Be the Boss social tiles

Be the Boss

The message we wished to share to young people around online gambling and sports betting was clear: You’re in charge. You’re the boss. So, together we launched a brand-new initiative called 'Be the Boss'.

The initiative profiles young local gamblers as ‘heros’ who are in control of their gambling behaviours.

Icon produced the creative assets, including static and video and executed the campaign with a paid digital and social media strategy.

The creative provided the audience with knowledge around smart plays and empowered them to gamble in an informed manner, including:

  • If you are going to have a bet, do it on your own terms;

  • don’t bet just because your mates are doing it; and

  • don’t bet just because the app offers “free bets” or other incentives.

A behaviour change journey

The 'Be the Boss' campaign launched in January 2021 with an intensive 8-week digital and social media campaign, rolled out in phases to take the audience through a behavioural change journey.

The campaign was very well received by the target audience, with a key result showing that social reach exceed KPI’s by 130% due to a high number of social shares. Furthermore, the programmatic digital display activity reached a CTR of 0.4%, exceeding industry benchmark.

BTB_Hero Video 15sec_v12.mp4
BTB_ Slideshow Video_v09.mp4


  • Behavioural change strategy

  • Creative ideation and direction (co-design process)

  • Video production

  • Graphic design

  • Digital media