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Is your Brand Green?

 
 
As summer approaches it’s a good time to take stock of your brand and review your strategy in line with a green initiative that is a good brand fit. Sustainability is on everyone's lips so take a look at your brand and see where you can adapt to become "greener". Top international brands have been doing it for years but don't often communicate enough about what they are doing and how they are doing it. Why? It could be that they are either concerned about "green washing" or they just don't know how to tell their story convincingly enough.
 

Engage

 
If you want to engage with your consumer, you need to tell your story. You need to tell how you are doing it differently and how it benefits the environment.

Consumers respond well to green innovation and smaller brands are able to innovate quicker as they are more nimble and may have less red tape to deal with. Big brands are often stuck in the world of "old media" where the communication strategies are rigid and therefore aren't always able to communicate timeously.
 

Create

 
The reasons to increase your brand's Eco-cred are tangible. Firstly, it is the right thing to do. Secondly, it helps in attracting new customers, and even attracts better employees as people inherently feel better about the company, and themselves, if it is an environmentally-conscious firm.

Never assume that consumers understand the level of your commitment to help the environment. Take time to educate them on your brand and your environmental activities. Being recognised as a green brand requires both perception and performance.

Ensure that you staff understand what their role in the green campaign is through internal education programmes and workshops and then ensure there are measurements in place to ensure consistency of campaign and the deliverables.

If your products or services are not environmentally responsible by nature, how could you increase your brand's green messaging without falling into the green-washing trap?
 

Want some Eco-Cred? Here are some ideas:

 
1. Partner with charities
  a. Partner with an organisation that shares similar values and ideas that your brand represents. Sharing a common vision will ensure that the campaign will be a success and that the venture is reputable.
  b. Engen, Nampak and Woolworths have a pilot projects where they have teamed up and placed bins in stores and at fuel stations where consumers can drop off waste paper, glass, plastics and tins for recycling.
     
2. Run environmentally responsible employee programmes
  a. Educate staff on all things green such as being responsible with water; recycling and being energy efficient. This will help the environment, make staff environmentally aware and protect the world for future generations.
  b. You can develop marketing campaigns around the success of the staff initiatives. Ask employees to submit ideas on how they personally can make a difference and incentivise them by providing a monthly prize for the most innovative idea.
  c. Here is a Plastics Industries own site for more information on how to recycle plastics.
     
3. Buy or use green packaging or products
  a. Re-evaluate your packaging materials, and where possible, use recycled packaging or products.
  b. Coke has developed new "green" bottles, which are derived from plant-based materials. They have also introduced ‘Coke LIFE’, which uses Stevia, a plant-based sweetener instead of sugar. ‘LIFE’ has half the calories that a bottle of classic Coke does making this a healthier option.
 
The key take out for brands is this. Don't just talk about going green, do it!

Contact WRAPPA and let us help you get Eco-Cred as part of your brand strategy!