Environmental sustainability and conscious consumption should be at the forefront of everyone’s minds. Now more than ever, 21st century marketing must place social and environmental responsibility ahead of shareholder value.

The Eco Pledge, a Chamber of Commerce initiative spearheaded by PLOTT’s own Katie Hale, is driving this message home to local businesses and throughout the wider Midlands area, and we’ll be promoting it at the Chamber Expo next week. Our illustrator will be there to bring visitors pledges to life in a visual, creative way. Ark Media will also be filming visitors make their pledges as a reminder.

Why are we getting involved?

Finding a purpose beyond the desire to make money is very important in an increasingly competitive world. The attitudes and behaviour of people towards what they buy and why the buy it – whether a consumer product or business service – has changed.

Over the years we have sub-consciously implemented initiatives to reduce our waste (printing less, printing double-sided, reducing plastic, recycling more) but now we want to consciously get behind this scheme and think of further ways we can make a difference, no matter how small.

As part of our commitment to the Eco Pledge we will be working with our clients and suppliers to reduce our impact:

  • Educate clients on moving away from printing mass generic marketing and encourage a more targeted, personalised approach. We see this as a ‘win win’ – printing less and being more effective and efficient.
  • When we do print, either in office or externally, we’ll only be using FSC paper.
  • We will recommend all our clients use carbon balanced paper, facilitated by the World Land Trust which offsets the equivalent amount of carbon dioxide to building forests.

So in a nutshell, it’s good for the planet, and it’s good for business.

Conscious consumption

Are consumers today more demanding than before? Not really, but expectations have changed. The focus is shifting from the physical product to everything around it – the way it is marketed, it is serviced and socially accepted.

The phrase ‘conscious consumption’ highlights how people are looking not for simply a product or service that fulfills a practical demand but also reflects their personal ethics and values.

I personally try to buy brands that reflect who I am and the values I have. They are a reflection of what I stand for.

As consumers get savvier, we want to buy brands with an authentic sense of purpose and that are helping in some way to build a better world and improve the lives of their customers. We want businesses to recognise the social impact they have, and this isn’t just a nice to do now, we as consumers are demanding it. Purpose is driving profit.

Here at PLOTT we often talk about finding your purpose. The reason ‘why’ your business exists is one of the most important questions any business needs to answer. Failure to have such a purpose will ultimately make you lose clients, employees and longer-term business value.

International Synergies, a client of ours with whom we’ve worked for several years, are champions of the circular economy. They work with SMEs to identifying resource reuse opportunities across all industries, allowing one company’s unwanted byproducts to power another.

International Synergies are offering a free sustainability audit to all Chamber Members as part of the Eco Pledge – get in touch with them to find out more!

Get one step ahead and come and visit us at the Chamber Expo on 7th June!

If you want to talk to us more about our Eco Pledge, why not drop Anna an email.