Today an estimated 1 billion people will participate in the annual observance of Earth Day that is expected to Mobilize the Earth™
We’re seeing many, hard to ignore examples of our planet’s distress — draughts and floods, extreme weather, rising sea levels and disappearing Arctic ice — signs we should not ignore. Businesses have a responsibility, just as the rest of us do, to the planet and the generations to come. It seems that despite the attack ads and misinformation, more and more of us are starting to understand the real issues involved. What’s more, consumers want to do business with companies that are environmentally responsible.
Here are some simple ideas for making your office — large or small — more green. Look around your workspace and see what things you can do. For example…
- Adding a recycling bin to any central locations in your office — by the mailboxes, in the break room, next to the copier… anywhere there’s a trash can.
- Using ceramic mugs or glasses for coffee or other drinks.
- Patronizing other green businesses in your area.
- Removing your business from any junk mail lists you get on, as well as the Direct Marketing Association’s prospect list.
- Limiting how much paper (35% of the waste stream) you use, consider electronic signatures for documents.
- Following the FTC Green Guides when making marketing claims.
- Recycling old electronic equipment — cell phones, cameras, palm pilots for example.
- Choosing products that are made from renewable or recycled materials by keeping track of green corporate citizens via ClimateCounts.org. Ask exactly what makes the product “green”.
- Being sure to shut off those lights, unplug the power strips for your computer/printer setup as well as device chargers when not in use.
So long as you don’t shout these earth-friendly actions from the rooftops, people will see your efforts as genuine not a marketing gimmick. You do your part and focus your marketing efforts on your product or service — what’s the most important, most distinctive benefit you offer? Is your product/service a clear improvement over what customers have today? Leave any environmentally responsible features as a secondary message — not hidden but not the focus either. A successful strategy, as these businesses proved.
This makes buyers feel good about choosing your business.
And speaking of making customers feel good about your business, promotional products can help here too — research shows they beat out other forms of advertising in terms of recall rates and cost per impression. More effective. More affordable. When you go green with the promo items you give away, you go beyond establishing a connection with the recipient, you deliver a subtle but powerful message about your commitment to our environment.
What’s more, there are so many more green promotional products than ever before. We’ve come a long way from recycled note pads — these days there are products targeted to living a green lifestyle — items for the gardener or fitness buff as well as earth friendly everyday essentials like mouse pads, magnets, key tags, coasters and stress balls. There are even recycled items for special events — tablecloths, napkins, banners and more. And that’s not all — you can even find cell phone charms, toy yo-yos and recycled glass ornaments — more unique items that go beyond showcasing your business name and number, they are rock solid evidence of your commitment to a more “green” way of doing business.