The Eco Preservation Society isn't forcing one to take extreme steps, but rather encouraging each of us to take a minumum of one eco friendly step toward becoming more sustainable. If most of us take one step then as a complete, we could make a substantial difference.
Let's Save the World
The Eco Preservation Society isn't forcing one to take extreme steps, but rather encouraging each of us to take a minumum of one eco friendly step toward becoming more sustainable. If most of us take one step then as a complete, we could make a substantial difference.
The Eco Preservation Society is a membership, educational and networking organization specializing in the promotion of sustainable human action focused on achieving positive environmental effects. Our job is to market study, travel and instruction applications that advance environmental awareness and facilitate public consciousness with a call to action.
Mission Statement
The Eco Preservation Society is a membership, educational and networking organization specializing in the promotion of sustainable human action focused on achieving positive environmental effects. Our job is to market study, travel and instruction applications that advance environmental awareness and facilitate public consciousness with a call to action.

Eco Products From Big Brands – Green Marketing or Greenwash?

Big brands make eco-friendly products too. Is it just cynical green marketing? Should you buy from them? The answer might not be what you think!

The post Eco Products From Big Brands – Green Marketing or Greenwash? appeared first on EcoFriendlyLink - The EcoExpert Blog.


Big brands make eco-friendly products too. Is it just cynical green marketing? Should you buy from them? The answer might not be what you think!

The post Eco Products From Big Brands – Green Marketing or Greenwash? appeared first on EcoFriendlyLink - The EcoExpert Blog.

choosing a brand via green marketing

Are you avoiding green products by big brands using green marketing because you think they’re greedy? Think again!

 

choosing a brand via green marketing

 

This is a Guest Post by Omri Barmats

How do you choose one green product over another? What do you pay attention to? The brand? The material? Or maybe longevity and durability? Is it compostable over recyclable or the other way around?

The green movement that started in the ’60s, gave birth to a new kind of consumer. We no longer look for the cheapest or the prettiest. We also look for the greenest. Marketers quickly took note of these odd purchasing habits – they came up with a ‘Green marketing strategy’ to capitalize on “unusual” buyers.

More and more product packages went green, both in color and material. Some were genuine solutions to the plastic that has contaminated our waters, air, and soil for years. Others were just a part of cynical ‘green marketing’ campaigns, targeting what I like to call preferring-green-consumers, as opposed to researching-green-consumers.

Either way, public opinion was shifting – businesses had to adapt.

Today ALL big brands do green marketing

We’re at the point where it’s hard to find companies that don’t play the green marketing game. From McDonald’s to Coca-Cola to Ikea or Ford or Levi’s. They all know green marketing is something their PR and advertising teams have to make sense of.

They’re also at a bit of an impasse.


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Green marketing doesn’t always work for big brands

As it turns out, consumers tend to avoid green products offered by big brands in favor of brands that are solely green and offer green products by default.

Why is that? Is this a good long-term strategy to encourage green brands? We’ll get to that in a bit.

First, I want to talk about a meeting I had with a friend of mine.

My ultra-ethical friend

I was waiting in the living room while this old friend of mine was putting her newborn baby to sleep. Sitting there, I noticed her house is as ‘earth-friendly’ as it gets. Her furniture was second-hand and leather-free, she had five (!) different recycling cans and when I opened her fridge (yes, I’m that friend) everything was 100% vegan and of course plastic-free.

I always knew she was a conscious buyer, but this was on the a-whole-nother level, I was impressed!

food shopping vegetarian

When she came back I asked her if it was harder to maintain the eco-friendly lifestyle now that she’s a mother and obviously has less time and budget.

She said it’s hard because she has less time for research and that REAL green products are usually on the expensive side.

So I asked her (and here is my main point): “What do you mean REAL eco-friendly products?” 

She looked at me weird and said: “REAL, as in the company is 100% Eco-friendly, Vegan, cruelty-free and ethical”

I found her approach a bit too extreme, and tried to explain that buying the green option, especially from a big non-eco-friendly brand, might actually be better for the environment.

She disagreed, and wasn’t really in the mood to get into it.

We changed the subject.

This is the default approach of most green consumers. It’s understandable, big brands are a hot topic. Still, I want to use this platform to challenge this skeptical attitude. (And not in front of a 2-hours-of-sleep-a-night new mother who just wants to chill. Don’t worry, I’ll send her this link)

So hear me out!

6 Reasons to Buy “Green Products” from Big Green Marketers

The first image we have of big corporations is negative. And with good reason. Companies like Coca-Cola, Pepsi and Nestle’ are among the biggest contributors to plastic pollution and C02 emissions worldwide.

It’s also exactly why we can’t ignore them.

coca-cola green marketing

#1. Big brands make the biggest difference

They have massive influence on the market and on the environment. Think about it, how huge of an impact can we as consumers have if we make even a single corporation go greener? Beats ignoring their initiatives.

See, by avoiding the brand and the eco-friendly alternatives it offers, you are basically telling them: “There’s no market for your product and you are wasting your time trying to sell to me, keep doing what you do best: regular non-eco-friendly-products for non-conscious consumers.”

But by buying the green alternative from big brands we’re sending the opposite message: “Hi! Keep on going, move more of your resources into green products over your contaminating ones! We will buy them!”

  • See what Gary Yourofsky had to say about the issue when asked if it’s right to buy the vegan option from a non-vegan brand

#2. Only the bottom line makes big brands change

Big brands and their CEOs will not suddenly go green because they care for the environment more than they care about profit. And if they do, they’ll soon be replaced by another CEO who rakes in the cash. These are the economics – we can complain or we can use them to our advantage.

If we want to make those brands change their ways, like we want to make our friends change their ways, we need to show them there’s profit in manufacturing green products.

So what if their interest is not pure? (Or purely financial)

We have a goal, and we shouldn’t care about the reason why big brands become sustainable or ethical, only that they do. The sooner the better.

#3. Green marketing can reach a wide audience of non-eco-friendly consumers

Let’s say you buy your products from a small company that produces them in a perfectly green fashion. Zero C02 emissions, zero plastic, and all workers have top-notch dental insurance.

Ask yourself: how many people have access to this company and their products? Is it selling only in your neighborhood eco-friendly vegan market? Is it shipping only in the U.S?

green marketing in supermarketsThe distribution advantage of big corporations is huge. They can insert green products into markets around the globe. Places where “green” isn’t even a thing yet.

Think about brands like Pampers or Tide. Walk into any store in any country – you’ll find their products. They’ll be on an eye-level shelf, waiting to be grabbed.

Wouldn’t it be great if the green option was there too?

Buying from the 100% green company might make you a greener individual and your personal footprint smaller, but buying from the big brands will help green products reach new markets faster and wider.

#4 Green marketing can eventually offer a cheaper price

If you’re buying green on a regular basis, you know this already. Green products are usually more expensive. So are healthy products, vegan options, gluten free, and so on.

They’re normally regarded as a ‘Premium product’ or made outside the main production line, which adds to their cost.

Whole wheat bread is usually sold at higher prices than white bread, even though whole wheat is easier to make. Supply chains are key.

Small vegan companies with small factories (which we love) will always stay premium and relatively expensive. This is what their financial model requires them to do. They’re limited by design.

But buying your green options from big brands can help reduce those costs as far as large scale production goes. Making the green alternatives more approachable to buyers from lower social-economic status, who don’t necessarily consider themselves “green consumers”.

There’s a lot of people out there who can’t afford green. This way, they just might.

#5. Big brands have big R&D

I believe it’s impossible to convince the vast majority of people to lower their lifestyle for any cause. Being less comfortable is a hard sell. Most people will keep showering for 30 minutes twice a day, eat beef, take their car everywhere and use plastic bags while they watch our plant burn from the window of their SUV.

The real way to make a change in this behavior is to offer people the same level of comfort with sustainable green products. Electric cars, compostable plastic bags and bamboo disposables.

For that, we need to make equally good products. Something that makes the average person think: “Well, I get the same result with this green product, and it’s also eco-friendly? Why not?

research into nutritionIn order to get there (for instance, compostable bags are not here yet), we need the big brands on our side. We need their endless resources and scientific R&D knowledge, we need their deep understanding of how a consumer mind works, how to penetrate new markets.

Convincing people is expensive – and they can help pay for it.

#6. The carrot and stick

When I bring up this topic, most green consumers tell me big brands’ green marketing campaigns are a cynical attempt to have the cake and eat it too, and that they’d rather avoid them completely and buy from the solely green brand.

This isn’t how you tame a big brand. They can last for centuries with or without you. Try this instead:

Don’t buy their regular stuff. That’s the stick. No cash for their trash.

air conditioning and climate change incentiveBut when they offer you a high-quality green product?

You might as well give them a carrot.

What do you think? Are these arguments compelling? Do you totally disagree with everything I said? Let me know in the comments section below.

Omri Barmats  TheLessen.com

 

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Warm regards,

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The post Eco Products From Big Brands – Green Marketing or Greenwash? appeared first on EcoFriendlyLink - The EcoExpert Blog.


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