The Advantages of Selling Green - Part 1: Terminology
What does being green even mean?
A 2019 study done by the Harvard Business Review found that 65% of consumers said that they want to buy brands that advocate for sustainability, but only 26% of consumers actually end up buying those brands. The reason for this discrepancy is likely a combination of several factors: consumers aren't clear on what is really a "green" product, it's easier to just stick with the products you know or it is simply virtue signaling.
Even if we discount the virtue signalers, 65% of consumers wanting to buy green products is a significant number that cannot be ignored. The challenge for stamp makers, once they embrace the reality that "green" products are an important product to is how do you get customers that say they WANT to buy green, to actually BUY green?
At Trodat, we believe with the right products, and the proper approach, you can help them break old buying habits while educating them on what you have that they are looking for.
It is not easy convincing customers to consider something new over the security blanket of old products that they are used to, in the end, it will be worth it for everyone. In the immortal words of Kermit the Frog, “It’s not easy being green,” but with the right marketing and promotion, a green product offering can give you advantages in the marketplace over your "non-green" competition.
In this blog series we will look at the world of sustainability and marketing green products. We will first look at the terminology used and what these words mean in the world of sustainability. Then we will dive deep into the world of Trodat and see how we not only talk the talk, but we also walk the walk of sustainability. Finally, we will look at how to market green and try to show you the best ways to overcome challenges of converting customers, and marketing your green products to consumers.
Words Mean Things
So many misunderstandings happen because words are either used incorrectly or the current use of the word may no longer mean what it once did. If both sides of a conversation have different interpretations of a word, then both sides will find it difficult to understand what the other is trying to convey. If your customer doesn’t speak the same “green language” as you, then there’s a good possibility you may lose the sale. Being on the same page communication-wise is crucial, especially when trying to persuade a customer to try something new.
Here are some common terms we will use and what their current meaning is as they relate to the environmental debate:
Sustainability: The meaning of the term sustainability, as it is used today, comes from the 1987 UN report “Our Common Future”. Sustainability means development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. In short, don’t do anything today that will negatively impact future generations.
Climate Partner: This is an independent company that conducts climate protection consultation for many companies and NGOs. Among other things, Climate Partner calculates products' CO2 footprint or companies' greenhouse gas balance.
CO2 Footprint: The CO2 footprint is the amount of CO2 greenhouse gas that a person, a household, or the manufacture of a product produces. We all leave traces behind on our way through everyday life, regardless of what we do, almost everything consumes energy and thus produces CO2.
Emissions Trading: The trading of emissions was defined as part of the Kyoto protocol. The aim of trading is to reduce global emissions as soon and as economically as possible. Companies that cause a great deal of CO2 emissions can purchase emissions certificates. They thereby finance climate protection projects in developing and emerging countries. This tactic has two advantages: 1. Emissions are compensated for and 2. Developing countries profit from the technology transfer. Of course, emissions trading does not absolve companies from the ethical obligation to reduce CO2 emissions in their manufacturing process, but rather acts as a stopgap while they work to do so.
Post-Consumer Recycled Plastic: This type of plastic is what most people think of when they talk about recycled plastics. Plastic that has made its way into the marketplace. Water bottles, milk jugs and plastic packaging are just three examples of post-consumer recycled plastic. Using more and more post-consumer plastic is beneficial to the environment but it is not without its challenges. Difficulty in using post-consumer plastic along with simply sourcing the materials are just two examples of the issues with this type of material.
Post-Industrial Recycled Plastic or Pre-Consumer Recycled Plastic: During any manufacturing process there is going to be some waste created. This waste never makes it to the customer. It stays inside the plant and is reused. Because this material never makes it to the consumer, it is cleaner and easier to reuse.
Climate Neutrality: A product is considered climate neutral if it doesn't alter the atmosphere's CO2 balance either by not causing emissions during the manufacturing process, which is very rare, or by neutralizing the product's CO2 footprint through compensating measures like emissions trading.
Persuading someone to leave what they’re used to behind and embrace the unknown is tough enough, trying to do so in two different languages is nearly impossible. Making sure that you and your customer are on the same page when it comes to terminology is an essential part of the marketing process, especially when you’re promoting a product or feature that may be new to them.
The good news is that Trodat's core products are already eco-friendly! There's not premium cost or "green" upgrade options... our stamps are environmentally responsible as is.
And to help you get the word out to your customers, we're providing a digital catalog that you can download and add to your website or email to customers. You can also link products in the catalog to ones that you sell on your website for additional customer convenience.
Along with the catalog is a social media post for you to use as well. You can display this on your Facebook page, Instagram or whatever platform you prefer. Let your customers know that just by using your Trodat stamps, they are already green warriors!
Download Your Trodat Eco-Friendly Stamps Catalog & Social Media Post
If you'd like to have the catalog cover customized with your company's logo and information, just email our marketing department at either email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org with your request.
In Part 2 we will look at Trodat’s environmental initiatives and how they’ve culminated in the carbon neutral Printy and Professional self-inking stamp lines.
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