Sustainable marketing: moving brands towards a greener future

Sustainable marketing: moving brands towards a greener future

19th April 2021
Thoughts & Insights

With consumers becoming more conscious and the fight against climate change becoming increasingly important, it’s never been more paramount for brands to enhance their CSR and sustainability values.

From reducing air pollution to rethinking product packaging, there are significant transitions brands can make to become greener. Once these processes are in place; transparent, engaging and educational sustainable marketing will help grow your brand for all the right reasons.

Green through and through:

It’s no secret that becoming more ‘sustainable’ doesn’t happen overnight nor is it achievable by simply stating it in a press release. Consumers are becoming increasingly sceptic of brands and their values. Take the FMCG industry for example, there’s often a lack of trust where products are produced, by whom, with what ingredients, at what cost and the subsequent health impact.

For sustainability to resonate with your brand, it needs to be at the heart of what you do. From initial concepts to production and marketing, your identity and values should be green. For brands this may require revaluating processes. This may result in products costing more but it’s clear that conscious consumers are willing to spend more on products and services that are sustainable. Communicated well, this will generate trust and confidence with consumers for long-term loyalty and respect.

Technology over travel:

Ditch the travel and take advantage of technology. If 2020 taught us anything, it’s that we can work remotely, and brands can do their part by cutting down on their carbon footprint by eliminating unnecessary travel. Whether that’s working from home a few days a week or having your board meeting virtually, these actions will help you become more sustainable and likely to increase productivity.

With high streets being closed due to Covid-19, last year saw a huge increase in online sales. Ecommerce brands who’re driving for more sustainable processes have had to think about more environmentally friendly methods to transport goods. The ASOS and Gnewt partnership is a great example. The retailer trialled shipping 500,000 orders using Gnewt’s electric vans, saving 80 tonnes of CO2 compared to using standard delivery vans. If companies adopted alternative delivery methods such as electric transport, this would significantly reduce congestion, vehicle use and emissions all in one.

Sustainable packaging:

Brands that use a lot of single-use plastics within their packaging, or use an unnecessary amount of packaging, need to make a change. Whether you have a physical retail presence, an ecommerce site or something else entirely, the way you package your product is something customers care about. Using packaging that can be recycled or upcycled such as paper and cardboard is a great step towards a greener brand.

The conversation around bioplastics (plastic made from 20% or more of renewable materials) has become a topic of increasing interest. Bioplastics can come under scrutiny as they may contaminate our current recycling practices, but reports show they emit up to 70% less compared to traditional plastics. Companies such as Sulapac created robust and recycled sustainable alternatives to plastic that are bio-based. Consumers look for brands that use sustainable materials and increased adoption of these practices could help shift current and standard recycling processes in place now.

Sustainable marketing:

Sustainable brands are only going to be successful if they shout about it. Creating a strong and well-rounded marketing strategy to touch consumers at all points of the journey is key. Through educating and engaging content across a range of channels you can reach your target audience and hit your business objectives effectively. From informative blogs to behind-the-scenes videos, brands can use online platforms to show transparency, ethical principles and processes behind their sustainable values.

Whether it’s small internal changes or larger electric transport swaps, there are so many ways brands can become greener. In a time when consumers are becoming increasingly conscious and the action on climate change is growing, it’s never been more important to strive for sustainability.

We’d love to hear how your brand is implementing positive changes on social! @stmcreates.

emily sandom
Article by Emily Sandom

Social Media Manager

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