How to Make Your Business Truly Environmentally Friendly?
Your Words = Your Actions
There’s nothing more important to consumers and businesses right now than ethics. As we become more socially conscious, navigating this within your marketing has become essential. Whilst there is support to learn from any mistakes, individuals are much more likely to receive this than companies, where their brand reputation is likely to suffer as a result.
Let’s take a look at some of the key marketing mistakes made by businesses and how you can avoid them.
Practice What You Preach!
In order to be effective, you should only speak out for causes that you truly believe in, and for which you have taken action. There’s nothing worse than companies saying that they care about pollution and the environment, but are taking no steps towards achieving it themselves – Also known as greenwashing.
What is Greenwashing?
Greenwashing is when a business pretends or over-promises to be environmentally conscious for marketing purposes, without actually making any notable sustainability efforts. One of the most famous examples was Coca-Cola Life, a new brand of Coke claiming to be made from natural sources. Despite it not being much different at all to the original Coke, this was quickly called out as quite ironic, as they are one of the largest plastic polluters in the world.
This is why it’s important you practice what you preach, and be ready to back up any statements with evidence of action.
Shooting for the Stars and Falling Short
All businesses that care about the environment and sustainability should be pledging to do better at protecting the world. But many will write very impressive company charters and promises that are unachievable. This can really come back to bite you if you are called out for not achieving goals that your business set themselves.
Social media can be like the Wild West at times, so it’s important that everything that comes from your business is grounded in truth. If you are committing to an all-hybrid fleet of vehicles by the end of the year, you better be damn sure it’s possible!
But not everything has to be moonshot ideas on climate. For example, create a video for social media where a few of your team go and plant trees to offset the carbon emissions created by your fleet at the end of the year. This is a great way to highlight your efforts with real, visible action.
Overpromising and underdelivering on sustainability gives the impression that your product or service may do the same – it’s not a good look.
Knowing your Target Audience
Consumers and businesses alike all have their own moral compass and the calls for sustainable and environmentally friendly solutions and products are ever-growing.
If you are a construction company, when pitching for business, you may be asked about sustainability and the environment. Having real-world evidence of this such as solar panels and green roofing can be the difference in winning the business as other businesses have their own goals that they need to reach, which impacts their supply chain.
As part of your ongoing marketing, you should be constantly monitoring how people’s perceptions are changing and making sure you position yourselves in the right places, whilst also backing your words up with action.
On the flip side, consumers directly will want to know how your business makes its products. As convenient as fast fashion is, companies that do this are frequently called out for it. If you want to appear socially conscious, make sure that your product is sourced in the same way.
Protecting your Brand
In 2023, your most important business asset is public perception. People talk, so if you provide clarity and keep your environmental goals achievable, then you will gain much more respect from the public, clients and potential customers than you would if you overpromise.
The Bottom Line
Practice what you preach. By doing this you protect your brand from being accused of greenwashing and also by taking real action, you are taking important steps towards sustainability and your clients and customers will thank you for it!
Here at Marketing Elect, we have supported many businesses towards achieving their ethical goals. For example, our latest campaign for Chelmsford City Council highlighted the part that we all play in women’s safety in the city. This showcased real action towards solving a very important issue in the local community.
Get in contact with the team today and earn your free Ethical Business Audit, quoting “Audit Me” before the 21st of November 2023!