Save the planet, save your wallet
The environmental topic is nothing new to most of us, the news and trends of becoming greener surround us from all sides and mediums. You open a magazine; article on how to behave sustainably is there. You turn on the TV, there is a program on how to be more ecological. You open the fridge; green packaging looks at you back. You go to the bathroom .... You get the point. Now you might think: "What's in it for me?" Let's be honest, the idea of Earth being destroyed by non-green consumption seems to be distant and un-imaginable. .
Many businesses try to remedy the effort of you switching to environmentally friendlier solutions by making the offers more financially attractive or recognize you for the efforts in other ways. Here are just a few strategies that marketers use to make you switch to the “green side” (reference to the Star Wars intended).
1. Price reductions if you bring your own package
I have noticed in our school cafeteria a new campaign, where if you bring your own cup, or if you reuse the cup from previous purchase, you will get a 10% discount. This might not sound like too much, however if you think about how much coffee you drink per week, it might add up. By doing this, the cafeteria also saves money on cups supply or even makes money on selling the durable and sustainable cups, as now they seem more attractive. The same strategies are used also by big players such as Starbucks or Costa Coffee.
2. Lower energy consumption
Have you ever looked at the lightbulbs when purchasing? Is the price the main criterion? If so, you might want to reconsider. While the eco-friendly (LED) light bulbs cost much more, it is only the initial purchase. However, the energy costs are often lower than normal. 20 or more times longer. Marketers take advantage of this by introducing lifetime-cost of the product on the packaging. Next time you go shopping, have a look. Will you change your decision?
3. Donations to charities
Do you often donate to charities? Well, now by buying a green product, the company donates a small amount of money. This is a special product that you can also help others. How cool is that?
4. Recycling programs
Many products use packaging that can be recycled. Do you throw your empty bottles into trash? Think again. Almost every store has a small collecting station, which will pay you for the bottles. In the past, this was not the case, but the recycling took-off, companies (mostly grocery stores) now all offer exchange or money for the bottles. The same applies for other goods, such as electronics or even cars. This one is however double-edged strategy, as in some way it supports higher levels of consumerism and thus creates more and more waste eventually. However, it can save you a few bucks and companies often stress the "green" part of this strategy, which makes us close and that it is a good and sustainable thing to do.
These are just a few marketing strategies that are in the marketplace. While for me, these initiatives make sense as they give me clear steps and also motivate me through financial benefits. What do you think? Do you think they work? Would you be willing to save money? Do you know any other efforts that marketers can exercise to capitalize on the trend of going green? Feel free to share your opinion in the comments.