A growing number of businesses are embracing the idea that, whatever the founding premise of their company, that they need to adopt an ecofriendly business strategy if they’re going to remain relevant – but what does that look like in practice? The simple answer is that there’s no one size fits all solution that will suit every company, but that to succeed, most businesses will require a multi-pronged strategy that embraces everything from production to marketing. Sustainability touches every aspect of our lives and it also needs to engage every element of business.
Corporate Social Responsibility – A Show Of Commitment
Most companies think that running a sustainable business is, primarily, about their product. Whatever it is you make or whatever service you provide, it should be done in a way that minimizes its negative impact on the environment. In reality, corporate social responsibility (CSR) is about more than just output. It also includes other elements of sustainability, such as participating in volunteer work like community clean-ups, running a zero-waste office, renting space in LEED certified buildings, and sourcing organic, sustainably sourced food for your cafeteria. These practices are part of a holistic approach to sustainability that is necessary in a world threatened by climate change.
Advertising Meets Environmentalism
Many traditional advertising avenues are environmentally harmful because they produce excess waste that just ends up in landfills or littering the community; after all, how many branded water bottles or keychains does anyone really need? With that in mind, more companies are attempting to devise sustainable alternative marketing strategies to these traditional promotional goods. These strategies may be as simple as sourcing eco-friendly materials to make promotional goods from, whether that’s distributing reusable metal straws in a branded pouch or printing pamphlets on recycled paper.
Another major consideration for businesses that want to pursue sustainable practices is how to promote these changes. Yes, companies primarily aim to promote their products, but because sustainability informs many consumers’ purchasing decisions, highlighting ecofriendly practices can also be beneficial. By working with an experienced link building company, environmentally responsible businesses can get the word out about their efforts, whether that’s making a switch to reusable packaging, working towards a carbon neutral business model, or participating in a new CSR program. This type of positive press can have long-term benefits for a business.
Big Impact, Big Benefits
When pursued by a significant number of businesses over the long-term, sustainable practices can have an enormous impact on the welfare of our environment; indeed, the majority of pollution is the result of conventional business practices. That being said, environmentally responsible business practices aren’t just about caring for the environment. Today’s businesses recognize that it’s also good for their bottom line. In a recent survey, 81% of millennials stated that they wanted companies to make a clear commitment to CSR and that they are inclined to be more loyal to companies that engage in sustainable practices – but millennials aren’t the only ones. Social responsibility has become a selling point, and 35% of consumers are willing to spend more for sustainable options.
The business of the future is built on sustainable practices, but for older businesses, ensuring a profitable future starts by minimizing their impact on the environment. Unless companies act with the planet’s best interests at heart, they’ll be displaced by new businesses that recognize an important new perspective: the future is sustainable.
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