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February 2008 e-gram

It's Easy Being Green

Consumers increasingly associate themselves with social responsibility and the environment. Companies have responded with “green marketing,” creating a key point of differentiation by promoting the perception that their organization’s operations, products and services are eco-friendly. The challenge is to honestly assess and communicate what your organization is doing to protect our natural resources.

In this information age, you can transmit much data electronically versus the traditional ink and paper route, saving time and trees. When it comes to marketing, however, printed materials remain a key element of the overall strategy. There’s no need to compromise between social responsibility and the demand for marketing collateral. You can incorporate environmentally friendly techniques into virtually every aspect of your print campaign.

Choose words to match your values. Weave language that evokes the benefits of environmental protection into your copy, such as future, goodness, simplicity, legacy, inherit, purity, care, trust and fresh.

Carefully consider color selection. Environmentally friendly color is more complex than simply choosing forest green, sky blue or earth tones. Some ink colors are less friendly than others because the pigments may contain toxic heavy metals.

Images are powerful marketing tools. Traditional environmental images are earth, sky, water and trees. To more subtly convey your message, incorporate recycling bins or hybrid vehicles into the background.

Change your paper. Using recycled paper is a “quick win” for any organization wanting to demonstrate social responsibility. A range of recycled content comparable in quality, shade, performance and cost to virgin stock is available. We can help you understand your options, including de-inked, acid-free and uncoated papers.

Design to reduce waste. Put more words on a page using smaller fonts and margins, eliminate covers and incorporate two-sided printing.

Make conservation a part of the conversation. Bring your green marketing plan full circle by giving your customers the opportunity to recognize and participate in your efforts. Inform your clients that you have chosen earth-friendly printing techniques and remind them to recycle.

Responsiveness to green campaigns will inevitably grow as we gain a deeper understanding of how the Earth works. This will lead to a double bottom line, with your company’s success measured not only by profits but also by your commitment to our planet.