Global warming has long been a major concern, but with the COP 26 summit accelerating action towards the goals of the Paris agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change its now firmly front and centre. We are all responsible for doing our bit, but what can you do to reduce your carbon footprint and ensure your marketing campaigns are as eco-friendly as possible?
How can you ensure your marketing campaigns are contributing?
In an industry report from Shoppercentric, an independent shopper research consultancy, 80% of those surveyed described themselves as ‘environmentally friendly’ and 82% claimed to consider environmentally friendly labelling within their purchase decisions. To further compound the point, 59% claimed to actively avoid certain types of packaging. What’s clear from the research is that this isn’t a fad or a phase, the public’s concern for the long term future of the planet is here to stay.
Many brands, TOMS and Lush Cosmetics immediately spring to mind, have been committed to sustainability for some time now and continue to work with not-for-profit organisations to strive for a greener planet. With so many brands however waving the eco-friendly flag, it can sometimes be difficult for your brand/message and products to stand out and attract new customers or members.
In the current climate, referrals and ‘word of mouth’ are as important as they ever have been to grow your eco-friendly business or membership organisation. For one, recommending a business that is ethical and conscious of its impact on the planet makes us look and feel good. That is the power of social capital, especially in a world dominated by social media where promoting the best possible image of ourselves is paramount. Aside from the fact that many of us are genuinely passionate about climate change, being able to share our knowledge and recommend sustainable brands online is a hugely effective method of driving positive change.
Sometimes, given the global coverage the subject receives, it can feel difficult to make a difference when there is so much work to be done. Being able to shop sustainably and spending our cash with environmentally friendly brands allows consumers to feel they are making a tangible difference in their day to day lives, one small purchase or donation at a time. And if they can raise awareness by recommending to a friend, even better.
There are now a large number of businesses across multiple industries who are striving to do better and be more sustainable. There is no doubt that sea change has been driven by an increasing appetite for a more sustainable society.
With the constant, positive changes in the direct mail industry, it no longer needs to be seen as a process that is less environmentally friendly than other channels.
Paper mills and suppliers are working hard to offer ‘greener’ alternatives to the stocks used in the days when the issue was less prevalent, and printers and agencies alike are at the forefront of finding ways and means to communicate with as little impact on the environment as possible.
Below are 5 simple tips on how you can produce environmentally friendly direct mail campaigns in 2022;
- For those sending direct mail campaigns in ‘polywrap’ or similar, be aware that plastic is one of the biggest offenders when it comes to harming the environment. Can you use alternative means to send your communications? Perhaps a ‘self mailer’ would be just as effective?
- Re-sealable envelopes are great for reducing your footprint, as well as envelopes produced from recycled stock.
- On the subject of recycling, try incorporating a polite message asking your customer base to recycle your Direct Mail pieces after reading them. After all, a problem shared is a problem halved!
- Ask your print suppliers to use environmentally friendly inks. Vegetable based inks, as opposed to petroleum based versions, are far less harmful to the environment and most printers will be more than happy to comply.
- Consider print on demand processes such as hybrid mail (www.heraldchase.com/hybrid/) in order to reduce and consolidate the mail that you send out. By centralising your mailing operations, you have a far cleaner and greener mailing process.
We’d be happy to talk through the pro’s and con’s and the do’s and don’ts of both inbound and outbound marketing in greater depth and assist in your marketing efforts in any way we can.
Thanks for taking the time to read this blog, happy marketing!