Are you wondering if your business should be more eco-friendly? The short answer is yes, and it will help not hinder your business reputation.
The threat to the environment by and to humanity is such a pressing issue that more and more businesses are finding it beneficial to take steps that show that they care about the environment.
That’s not to say it would be a good idea to fake an eco-friendly image. However, doing so could backfire hard because consumers are pretty good at figuring out when brands are greenwashing.
However, for companies that are already eco-friendly or want to make changes to become so, promoting those efforts will go a long way to improving brand recognition and relatability for eco-focused customers.
As a bonus, it can attract the right kind of employees, who will help you improve your business over time and achieve your wider environmental goals and become enthusiastic brand ambassadors.
This is the term used to describe how brands market their products and services to highlight their eco-friendliness. Usually, this is done by a company committed to sustainable development and recognises its social responsibility. It can take the form of ad campaigns, social media posts, or in-store promotions, or even a monthly newsletter.
As mentioned above, though, it’s not enough to talk the talk without walking the walk. Eco claims that it can be easily debunked by scientists, journalists, or even the average social media user will have the complete opposite effect, alienating the new customers and potentially ruining the existing brand image.
How To Reduce Your Carbon Footprint
One of the biggest ways to improve your company’s eco-footprint is to focus on the products sold.
What materials are they made from? Are they easily repairable? What conditions are they made under? If your company provides a service, it can be done by critically selecting partners and investing in eco-friendly means of transportation.
However, this might not be the easiest place to start, and because of the time, effort, and money involved, it can actually be preferable to focus on something smaller first and build on that. People will respond to an honest, open effort because they like to see a sustained (and sustainable) improvement.
Small Green Steps
While coming up with a concrete plan for your company may take some time, there are small steps you can take already towards going green.
Put up posters in employee-only areas reminding people to turn off lights, computers, and taps when they’re finished with them.
Encourage workers to carpool or commute to work via public transport, on foot, or by bike with prizes or subsidies for bus/train passes, bike repair or walking boots.
Allow employees to work remotely where possible.
Provide reusable crockery and cutlery to reduce reliance on disposables during breaks. Plus, use recyclable printer paper and remember to print both sides.
Get a water filter to allow employees to refill their bottles from the tap
Circulate most communications electronically, and focus on digital marketing.
Using printed paper bags (some cheap options here) rather than the plastic ones for customer purchases
Opt for green cleaning products and reusable cloths to wipe up spills
Being Eco-friendly Helps Your Brand
As mentioned above, taking these small green steps (and communicating on them) can attract a new clientele and boost the business image in the media simply because 90% of Millennials are willing to pay more for sustainability. This is why eco-friendly products now make up 25% of the market share.
This interest in sustainability is something you’ll also see in the workforce, as Millennial workers simply prefer to work for a company that makes an effort to be sustainable. And so, besides accessing an interesting market share, going green can also improve employees physical and mental health.
Encourage your employees to not print their e-mails, to ditch the car in favour of a bicycle or to eat a little greener, as these are measures visible to your employees. And seeing that your business takes its commitment to sustainability seriously helps your Millennial worker’s morale.
Allow your business for a transitional period to train up employees and let the people involved get used to the changes. Then, perhaps you’ll need a moment to decide where to begin, set your new green priorities and find out how to combine improving the profit while saving the planet.
Hopefully, this has helped show how a greener image can be beneficial not just to the planet but also to the company’s bottom line. There’s no reason not to make at least some of these changes. It can seem overwhelming, but just start where you are with what you have and do the best you can.
Remember, it’s not about having a few people doing eco-friendly activities perfectly, but all of us doing them imperfectly.