10 Reasons Why Brands Need to Focus on Green Advertising
The past few years have seen a consistent rise in consumer demand for sustainable products. In particular, millennials and Gen-Zers have become more discerning about buying from brands that are doing their part to heal the environment and prevent the impending ecological collapse.
The sustainable product market is estimated at $150 billion in 2021, and because of this trend, brands are looking for innovative ways to do green marketing as a way to reach their target market, increase brand reputation, and boost their bottom line while helping to improve the environment.
If you want to enjoy the many benefits that come with green marketing, read the rest of this article to discover the 10 reasons why brands need to focus on green advertising.
But first, the basics.
What is Green Advertising?
Green advertising is a means by which brands promote environmentally friendly initiatives, products, or services while creating the ad in a way that minimizes negative environmental impact.
Some of the goals of green advertising include:
- Reducing expenses (transportation, packaging, water/energy usage, etc.)
- Implementing sustainable business practices
- Demonstrating safety and mindfulness of products/services
- Practicing social responsibility
As our society becomes increasingly concerned with the fate of the environment, millions of consumers are now choosing to purchase socially responsible products - sometimes even at higher costs - in support of helping the world become a cleaner and better place.
That's why it's more important now than ever before to focus on green marketing and green advertising as part of your business's marketing strategy.
There are many ways to integrate green marketing into your overall brand marketing strategy, and communicating your green message through advertising is a major part of that.
Now that we've covered the basics of what green advertising is, let's take a look at the 10 reasons why brands need to direct more attention to this practice.
1. Connect with Gen-Z and Millennials
One of the main reasons why brands need to focus on green advertising is so they can expand their reach and attract new audience segments.
There's a new culture of buying eco-friendly and organic products, and this growing market of green consumers is mostly made up of Zoomers (Gen Z) and Millennials (Gen Y) who are concerned about the future because of impending ecological collapse.
According to recent reports, 90% of millennials are willing to pay more if the product contains eco-friendly or sustainable ingredients.
Since 2014, sales of products with these attributes have been on the rise, and green advertising will help you tap into that market today.
And it's not just millennials and zoomers who value green brands, there are many other groups of consumers who may not buy your products or services because they are polluting the environment.
This means that if you improve your production practices and focus more on the health/eco-friendly benefits of your product, you will acquire brand-new customer segments.
Brewski is an example of an eco-friendly brand that has campaigns designed to connect with zoomers and millennials.
The beer brand prides itself on helping the environment with its eco-friendly cardboard holders and 100% recyclable cans.
2. Help the Environment
There's no denying that green marketing is a powerful strategy for brands, but it's also a great way for companies to help improve the environment and impede ecological collapse.
Modern businesses aren't just about increasing sales and generating profits. They also look for ways for reducing their carbon footprint, and green marketing is a sustainable way to do that.
The practice also offers the benefit of sustainability and efficient use of resources. When you adopt a green lifestyle, you must focus on sustainability, which in turn will transform into profits over time.
Green sectors have secure futures, and there are a lot of future-safe markets, such as:
- Green buildings
- Personal transportation
- Mobile applications
- Water filtration
… and many others.
In short, green advertising helps companies market their products while keeping environmental aspects in mind, and this positively impacts the environment.
3. Increasing Your Brand’s Reputation
A positive public image is crucial for success these days. Green marketing shows consumers that your company uses sustainable materials.
For instance, if you offer energy-efficient products, or if you have 100% recyclable packaging, these are the types of things that can appeal to your customers, which not only help you boost your company's reputation in the eyes of both existing and potential customers but also makes your customers feel that your brand has a responsible attitude toward natural resources.
As part of your process for increasing brand reputation, you can also partner with like-minded businesses for cross-promotion.
This will give you access to a broader audience, reduce promotion costs, and result in increased visibility and reach.
4. Boost Brand Loyalty
This tip is tied to the previous one. By improving your brand's image in the eyes of your customers, you also help to strengthen brand loyalty. This is yet another important reason to consider investing in green marketing.
When you make environmental consciousness the main focus of your brand, you benefit not only your sales but also consumer loyalty. It’s been shown that enterprises that genuinely make an effort to save the environment are more likely to generate high levels of respect and loyalty from eco-conscious consumers.
In the long term, green practices will help you get more profitable and establish your business as being trustworthy.
5. Gain a Competitive Edge
Yet another reason why brands should focus on green advertising is that it can give your business a competitive edge in the marketplace.
Green advertising offers unique product positioning which helps your brand stand out. For the most part, customers consider green products to be superior or higher quality compared to those that are not marketed as green.
So, when consumers compare your brand with others in the same marketing line, green advertising gives you a competitive advantage over many other companies that aren't embracing such techniques to help the environment.
An example of a brand that uses green marketing and advertising as a way to gain a competitive edge is The Body Shop.
The Body Shop went green and became a brand dedicated to conserving the environment. None of its products are tested on animals and the company sources its tea tree oil from a group of small farmers in Kenya.
The brand uses opportunities like these to position its products in the premium category. In fact, they even charge customers higher prices in order to recover the expenses incurred during the implementation of green practices like these.
6. Enjoy Economic Advantages
Not factoring in the upfront costs of choosing the eco-friendly route, going green has a lot of economic advantages.
It's like a reduction in waste and this results in lower operating costs and both economic and environmental savings.
You too can benefit from the use of eco-friendly business practices and equipment, such as:
- Using LED or low wattage lights
- Using natural lighting whenever possible
- Water conservation policies
- Using hybrid company vehicles
- Mandatory recycling, etc.
These and other practices will help you save money on fuel, utilities, office supplies, and much more so you can generate instant cash flow.
Also, going green means that more product innovations are possible.
In the process of adopting eco-friendly practices, businesses often have to redesign their manufacturing systems. They may need to acquire new technology in support of this change, and those new technologies and processes offer the business an opportunity to experiment with product development.
The bottom line is that this is a great strategy to adopt for any company that wants sustained long-term growth and profitability.
7. Make Your Brand More Relatable
Another important benefit of green advertising is that it makes your company more personal and relatable to your customers.
It also helps boost employee engagement and retention because most workers will feel proud to be working for a company that is environmentally responsible.
For instance, your brand might choose to support eco-friendly programs, as well as corresponding community initiatives as part of its green marketing strategy. This will make it a lot easier for your target consumers to relate to your company.
Just make sure that your green initiatives are entwined with your brand identity. For this to work, you must be fully committed to the idea of green advertising and it should be implemented in every aspect of your business, including design, positioning, logistics, pricing, disposal, etc.
8. Educate and Engage Consumers
Investing in green marketing is a great way to boost engagement, as well as provide easy consumer education on what you do to protect the environment, and why your efforts matter.
In addition to showing consumers that your brand is socially responsible (and gaining access to new markets), you can also use your green advertising campaigns to inform others about the different ways they can become active in healing the environment.
Keep in mind that the concept of green marketing is relatively new, which means that not all your customers may be aware of it.
Your business can educate and engage its customers through green marketing initiatives, such as hosting a webinar to discuss solutions to some of the most burning environmental concerns with your fans and followers.
Alternatively, you might create podcasts or write how-to guides on your blog to educate your customers on how to use your products in a more environmentally-friendly way.
This doesn’t have to be a costly exercise, either. For instance, you can use a free video editor like the one from this company which I personally use to create engaging videos for your customers.
You can use any of these as tactics to not only market your brand, but also help consumers green up their act.
For example, a hotel chain might educate its guests on the green benefits of forgoing housekeeping service.
Ultimately, if a significant percentage adopts this green-minded mentality, it can have a significant impact on the environment.
9. Become a Market Leader
Another benefit of focusing on green advertising is that it allows your business to become a market leader.
Implementing green practices gives you the opportunity to become a product and process innovator, which not only gives you the much-needed competitive edge, but also allows you to become an influencer in your industry.
Soon, you may find your brand even creating benchmarks for your competitors to follow, as shown by Whole Foods, a popular market leader in the health food industry.
Whole Foods is a great example of a brand that embraces green marketing - and they set the standards in the industry.
The brand also does large initiatives as part of its green mission to protect the environment. For instance, Whole Foods doesn't use plastic bags and the company's recycled documents are used for composting.
These modest yet impactful initiatives help to build brand awareness, engagement, and loyalty for Whole Foods and its parent company Amazon.
10. Increase Brand Recall
Green marketing will also help you boost visibility and increase brand recall. You can promote green aspects of your brand through various content assets at all customer touchpoints, including:
- Your website
- Social media profiles
- Email marketing
- Mobile marketing
- Cold calls
- Word-of-mouth, etc.
The more you implement green practices in your organization (and share them with your audience), the higher your visibility will be and the greater the brand recall value you’ll be able to achieve.
The demand for sustainable and eco-friendly products continues to rise. But, a lot of brands are still unsure whether or not going green will benefit them - particularly when considering the upfront costs involved in launching a sustainable product or the potentially astronomical expense of switching existing business processes to align with more eco-friendly measures.
But, going green saves money in the long run, and comes with a ton of additional benefits as outlined above.
I hope this article has helped you understand why you need to focus on green advertising, and the many benefits it will net you, such as expanding your reach, attracting new audience segments, strengthening brand visibility and reputation, boosting loyalty, and much more.
Do you think moving toward green advertising will benefit your brand? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!
Ron Stefanski is an internet business expert and marketing professor who has a passion for helping people create and market online businesses. You can learn more from him by visiting OneHourProfessor.com You can also connect with him on YouTube or Linkedin.