Sustainability is a core pillar of our business at Venturepark, and for good reason. While concerns over global warming literally and figuratively heat up, a new report showed that a mere 100 companies are responsible for 71% of global emissions. No matter the size, we believe every company has the opportunity and responsibility to make an impact on the Earth, and it’s a core principle we look for when deciding which businesses to work with.
And we’re not the only ones. In recent years consumers have prioritized purchasing products from sustainably operated businesses. As a result, there’s been a 71% increase in online searches globally for “sustainable goods,” especially in high-income countries like the U.K., U.S., and Canada in the last six years alone.
We believe that marketing is a force for creating cultural change — which is why ahead of Earth Day, we want to help you “green” market your business, to tap into that community of conscious shoppers, and showcase the incredible things your business is doing for the Earth.
What is “green” marketing?
Green marketing refers to the promotion of environmentally friendly products and services. Not only does it improve your business credibility, but it helps you stand out in a saturated market and grow your customer base.
Here are ways to best communicate your business as “green” while remaining authentic and generating sales.
Actually care about the planet
The first step to green marketing is actually caring about the environment. In order to market your business as “green,” you have to make a conscious effort to be sustainable. It’s hard to pretend you care about the environment if your business says otherwise — after all, we’re not in the business of “greenwashing,” but there are always ways to improve. Here’s how sustainability is good for business.
According to the Harvard Business Review, companies with sustainable business practices experience greater risk management, innovation, and larger profits.
Nearly two-thirds of consumers across six international markets believe they “have a responsibility to purchase products that are good for the environment and society.”
Millennials have money to spend and care where they spend it: Forbes reports that roughly 70% of millennial consumers will pay more for brands that support a cause they care about — and they’ll keep coming back for more. Consumers say they’re more likely to be loyal to brands that offer clear sustainability commitments. And how are they supposed to know if a brand is committed to sustainability? Through green marketing.
Add your brand’s sustainable efforts to the about page of your website
One way to communicate sustainability efforts is on your website's “about” page. This is your brand’s opportunity to tell the consumer who you are and what makes your business green. We recommend being as transparent as possible about your commitment to the environment.
For example, our partner, Province Apothecary, has an entire webpage called “Our Impact.” It’s a core pillar of Province Apothecary’s business model, and they make sure consumers know it: “When you choose Province Apothecary, you’re investing in yourself while investing in products made with a sense of responsibility for your health and the health of the planet.”
As you scroll down, Province Apothecary outlines how it reduces its carbon footprint through sustainable packaging, plant-based ingredients, responsible and ethical sourcing, and renewable energy.
Get sustainable certifications
A way of green marketing is to share your sustainable certifications. Don’t be afraid to display your badges of honour on your website.
The proof is in the pudding and customers value seeing that you’ve passed a review to make your sustainable status official, as seen her with Balzac’s Coffee Roasters.
Support local eco-friendly programs
Create opportunities to work with sustainable nonprofits. This is your opportunity to use your product to support an environmental cause by raising awareness and/or funds. For example, our partner Graydon Skincare supports Pact Collective, a “non-profit that’s dedicated to making the beauty industry more circular by providing solutions for hard-to-recycle packaging.” Graydon encourages its customers to recycle products through this program, with a step-by-step guide on how to do so.
This shows that Graydon cares about the environment and wants to help you care for it, too. In addition, Graydon Skincare supports the Ocean Legacy Foundation (OCF), donating $1 from every Fullmoon Serum to the B.C.-based organization that aims to eliminate plastic waste from oceans. Supporting an environmental initiative could be a way to compel consumers to choose your brand—and do some real good.
Establish partnerships with like-minded brands
Partnerships are mutually beneficial arrangements. Working with other green brands shows that you are aligned in achieving the same goal—a greener future.
Giveaways are a great place to start. Province Apothecary did so with its International Women’s Day giveaway and Pampered Pals giveaway. Like Province, all the brands included in these giveaways are also female-owned and sustainable.
Create content or ads that mention your sustainability efforts
If you’re a green brand, you should blast that message out to the masses. And how do you do that? Perhaps the most obvious way is through paid and organic content and advertisements. Let potential customers know about your efforts — especially if they’re unfamiliar with your brand. A great example of a sustainable ad is Kind Laundry’s animated YouTube ad. In it, Kind Laundry shares facts about the environment like “700 million plastic laundry detergent jugs go into U.S. landfills” and how its products combat this (being non-toxic and biodegradable). The ad clearly demonstrates a problem and how Kind Laundry offers a sustainable solution.
Moving away from traditional video ads, Province Apothecary does a great job of green marketing its brand through email content. It recently replaced its tin packaging in favour of a more sustainable tube. The email, “Out with the old, in with the tube,” explains what the new packaging is made of and how it benefits the planet (and your skin).
Earth Day Marketing
We can talk about marketing trends all day long, but “green marketing” isn’t a trend and shouldn’t only be discussed around Earth Day. Instead, it should be a long-term strategy to hook in consumers by sharing a genuine message about how you actively care for the planet.
If you let people know you’re creating a more sustainable world, more customers will join your cause.
Happy Earth Day!