By Austin Allen
In this day and age, we hear all about “Going Green”. Some people don’t care; others are selling their cars in exchange for public transit and bicycles. But what are some ways to incorporate a green mentality into your marketing strategy? Green Marketing is the marketing of environmentally friendly products, such as Sprint and Samsung are doing with the Samsung Reclaim. What I want to discuss is how to reduce the footprint of your physical marketing efforts.
Buy Local. I’m not talking about buying organic produce from the Farmer’s Market here! There are local printing companies and merchandise branding companies that would love to do business with other local businesses. Using companies out of state, region, or country contributes to the use of fossil fuel used in shipping. Small businesses like Mission Creek Printing right here in San Francisco offer extensive printing services. Not only does buying local cut down fuel consumption, but it is just better for your local economy.
Buy Eco. Recycled paper and Soy Ink are better for the environment. Every year tons of paper is wasted and sent to landfills, and the ink that is printed on that paper pollutes waterways. If your business does a lot of marketing via paper products, consider switching to green paper and ink products. Greener Printer in Berkeley, CA specializes in green printing practices. Yes, they are more expensive than other online firms such as Vista Print, but the extra cost is worth the benefits to our environment.
Reduce waste. San Francisco has a Compost Collection program along with its trash and recycling services… This reduces waste that ends up in landfills; compostable materials are more useful when they are actually composted. A business can move towards greener marketing by using green materials and educating and encouraging consumers to dispose of the materials in a greener way as well.
Utilize technology. This might seem like a no brainer. The amount of paper saved every year by using email and the internet to communicate and market a brand definitely outweighs the cost of electricity and e-waste that comes from throwing away computers every couple years (although you can recycle computers as well). Not only is online advertising becoming increasingly popular, but it is cheaper and more engaging than paper brochures that get mailed and thrown away consecutively. The web offers great advertising opportunities with paid search results and gives real-time analytics.
Market your efforts. If you are making an attempt to go green, go ahead and tell everyone. But, make sure you’re sincere. There are a lot of companies jumping on the green chic band wagon. If you are talking the talk and not walking the walk, people will call you out on it. Utilizing Green Marketing strategies will make other green businesses want to do business with you. So it is actually a marketing strategy in itself to go green.
What are you doing to reduce your marketing footprint? Share your thoughts below.