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16th Sep 2021

The Rise of Sustainable Marketing

Charlotte Stoker

A generational adoration for David Attenborough and the power of social media has left us in a space of need for thought on sustainable practices. 45% of consumers now pay attention to the sustainable footprint of the brand they are buying from. With the 2050 net-zero goal looming, brands need to show that they are committed to doing their bit to lessen their impact on the environment. A great way to communicate with your consumers on how you are upping your sustainability practices is via marketing, and this is something we are seeing more and more of.

Good Foundations

There are many highs and pitfalls of sustainable marketing and it’s important to curate your campaign in a way that doesn’t feel condescending or finger pointing to your consumer. You, as the brand, need to lead the way on becoming greener. What people want to know is how you are doing better and why. To keep your brand sustainable, you should be considering the following focus points:

  • Developing clear and achievable sustainability-related objectives and publishing these externally.

  • Demonstrate social responsibility

  • Are you producing your good sustainably? Avoiding the use of toxic substances which could damage the environment

  • Do you use unnecessary packaging? Could your packaging be more sustainable?

  • Could you keep your production and distribution more localised?

  • Try to manufacture goods using sustainable or even recycled/recyclable resources where possible

  • Work to make sure your products are being produced ethically

Once you have your sustainability goals established, it will become easier for you to convey this through your marketing campaigns.

Say NO to Greenwashing  

big problem in the sustainable marketing world is greenwashing. Greenwashing is when brands convey a false impression or provide misleading information to make it appear as though they are producing products in an environmentally friendly manner. As much as this often creates short term gain for businesses, they are ultimately often discovered for misleading their consumers, leading to damage to brand image. Never promise to be working towards a goal that you are not. 

Another aspect of greenwashing is when brands promote a singular eco-friendly project they are working on in order to hide their less than eco-friendly habits. Planting a tree for every £10 spent doesn’t cover the fact that a company may be producing with unsustainable materials and leaking chemicals into our waterways. 

The Best Sustainable Campaigns 

There are some amazing sustainability campaigns out there that have carried a brands sustainable message in a genuine and effective way. Some of our personal favourites for that all-important inspiration are: 

– Patagonia’s ‘Don’t Buy This Jacket’ campaign 

– The Body Shops ‘Eco Packaging’ campaign 

– Volvo’s ‘The Ultimate Safety Test’ commercial  

– LUSH’s ‘Our Environmental Policy’ video 

A quick search online will find you so many, but these are a few that give a perfect diverse range of ideas on how you can present your brand in a sustainable manner, from genuinely sustainably conscious brands. No greenwashing here! 

Get Going!

With the whole world needing to get its act together to battle the climate crisis, there’s been no better time to get going on presenting your sustainability promises to your consumers. So, dig deep into your own business, your production methods, distribution, packaging, the lot. Consumer love for sustainable brands is only growing so it’s important to show that you care.

Still feel like you need a hand creating a sustainable marketing strategy? We LOVE working with companies that are doing their best to help our planet! Get in touch with our specialist strategic team and we’ll dive right in.