More and more firms are putting a greater emphasis on operating in an ethical or sustainable way, and to make your business stand out from your competitors, you must communicate this to your customers. Research has shown that “green” consumers make up nearly a quarter of the consumer base, and they are more brand loyal than other consumer groups. They care about social responsibility and are prepared to pay for it, so it is in your interest to make sure they know about what you are doing.
Focus on one story
It is best to focus on one overarching story to convey to your consumers how your business is taking steps to protect the environment and protect our planet’s future. Target a feature that strongly relates to your brand, rather than making random, vague statements about sustainability. For example, if your brand is about performance, promote your sustainability efforts in the context of performance. How are your sustainability practices maintaining, contributing to, or improving the performance of your product or service? For optimum results, utilize the services of an internet-marketing agency that specializes in advising on marketing campaigns, such as Matomy Media Group. Metonym offers a full range of online advertising and marketing support, with tools such as the Matomy Marketplace. Be aware that too much information can appear dull to the general public; you have to get the balance right, so trust the experts.
Utilize social media
Utilize social media and social networks to spread the word. Show your consumers that you are keeping your promises with regard to social responsibility, and focus on the positives. Celebrity endorsement can quickly spark a social media buzz, and a quirky idea could trend on Twitter and other social media platforms. Consider placing videos telling a story on YouTube or Vimeo. Focus perhaps on a Fair Trade producer in Asia, or produce a short film that will invoke empathy. Include a “share” button on your social media updates and advertisements, and encourage recommendations from your followers by including competitions on social media.
Your company website
When customers click on your website, make sure that they are made aware of your social stance. Provide key information in your “about” page, such as how and why the company was founded, and how you and your suppliers are taking sustainability seriously. Use keywords such as “sustainable” and “fair-trade” in the titles of items or services on your website. This will provide instant recognition and attract customers, and the words will be displayed to users of the site who were not specifically searching for ethical items. You will alert new customers to your positive efforts as well.
Whether it is using sustainable products, operating environmentally sound practices in production, transport and onward selling and marketing, or supporting community projects or programs further afield, it is essential that your customers are aware of your company’s efforts. Customers, new and existing, will select a business that chooses ethical practices over one that does not, and you should therefore make the effort to build brand loyalty among them. Let your customers know about the good you are doing.