The planet is plagued by environmental concerns. Studies have shown that the degree of environmental awareness among customers is rising, and people are ready to buy eco-friendly products despite their higher pricing.
Businesses are embracing “green marketing” as a means of promoting a more environmentally friendly reputation.
Green marketing gives businesses the opportunity to communicate their core beliefs as well as their contributions to the local community and the world at large.
This article will help you understand what “green marketing” is and will provide you with green marketing examples from well-known brands.
What is Green Marketing?
In green marketing, businesses focus on their brand, goods, or philanthropic initiatives by highlighting their environmental and sustainable practices.
At its inception, it served as a medium for companies to communicate their environmentally friendly business practices while also showing how their products had evolved in response to customer demand for such improvements.
Promoting ecologically friendly goods and practices is an important part of any company’s marketing strategy, and green marketing is a great method to show the dedication a brand has toward saving the planet.
While many businesses claim to devote a percentage of their profits to environmental causes, only a small number can make the claim that their whole business model revolves around environmental concerns.
There are several advantages to green marketing, including:
- Taking social and environmental obligations very seriously.
- Making business decisions that are good for the environment.
- Taking a stand in a crowded marketplace that is becoming increasingly competitive.
- Increasing the trustworthiness of a brand.
- Providing long-term prospects for growth.
- Helping individuals make better decisions via education.
- Keeping costs down while increasing profits.
- Using less energy and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
- Enhancing the general public’s well-being
- Developing closer relationships with the people you want to influence.
15 Green Marketing Examples To Inspire You
Those who are new to green marketing may believe that only small niche brands can actually improve their practices sufficiently to be truly green businesses.
But that’s not the case. Sustainable practices have been embraced by a slew of well-known global corporations in recent times.
Take a look at these fifteen real-world brand green marketing examples.
Patagonia contributes to climate change concerns and seeks to find more environmentally friendly ways to make their goods. It is also honest with buyers, stating that the jackets’ shells are made of fossil fuels, which are not fully green. As long as the community can perceive the company’s genuine interest in saving our world, this truth will have no effect on the brand’s reputation.
The Common Threads Recycling Program is one of the company’s most effective environmental programs. Its purpose was to help customers get more use out of things they’d already bought.
For the previous five years, Patagonia has maintained or improved on its “outstanding” rating as a certified B Corporation (151). According to the Fashion Transparency Index, which conducted an audit of the Ventura, California, company in 2020, it received a 60 percent approval rating (the average score is 23 percent).
Here are their three key goals for the future:
- By 2025, we will no longer need virgin petroleum fiber. Better Sweater® jackets are made using recycled polyester to protest Big Oil. Since Fall 2019, they’ve prevented 14.6 million pounds of CO2 from entering the atmosphere.
- The packaging will be 100% reusable, biodegradable, renewable, or recyclable by 2025. They are using algal ink on hangtags and packaging, reducing plastic, and using QR code technology to cut paper by 100,000 pounds a year.
- By 2030, the business will be net-zero. First, they are developing less-impactful items to minimize their footprint to 1.5 C. In 2020, the Nano Puff® jacket switched to postconsumer recycled polyester insulation, lowering emissions by roughly half.
In addition, the company frequently gives millions of dollars to projects that encourage sustainable farming techniques, conservation of endangered species, and forest restoration.
TOMS is a well-known brand that is known for making comfortable shoes. The company uses the profits from its business to help people and the environment. If you go to the website for the company, you will see that over the past five years, TOMS has been making efforts to expand sustainable practices in key areas of its business.
These green marketing examples have included the use of earth-friendly materials such as sustainable cotton, as well as the reduction of waste and energy use. In addition, the team behind the business offers its customers packaging that is created from materials that have been recycled.
TOMS was given a B Corp score of 121.5 in 2021, approximately 30 points better than their previous assessment in 2018. Compared to the median score of all businesses, they are nearly 70 points higher than the B Corporation’s minimum requirement. The company’s website states that they have no intention of slowing down.
When it comes to environmentally-friendly business practices, Starbucks is one of the few corporations that has not only embraced but has also remained dedicated. The usage of power by Starbucks is minimized with solar energy.
Aside from that, they’ve made a point of employing eco-friendly building materials in their outlets. For the benefit of the city’s streets, they ran a highly successful Facebook campaign encouraging people to help plant trees and paint the sidewalks.
Throughout the world, this green marketing example was hailed as a success. They’re now attempting to make use of recyclable cups in order to cut down on the amount of garbage they generate.
The Greener Store Framework, co-developed with WWF in 2018, aims to expedite retail’s transition to lower-impact shops that reduce carbon emissions, water use, and landfill trash. Starbucks operates more than 2,300 Greener Stores in the U.S. and Canada and will use the framework outside of North America to develop and convert 10,000 by 2025.
4. World Wildlife Fund (WWF)
The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) is one of the most prominent instances of businesses that have gone green. The reduction of carbon dioxide emissions and the promotion of efficient recycling practices are the primary focuses of this initiative. An innovative rainwater collection system is one of the company’s many eco-friendly initiatives, which have been quite successful.
The decrease in staff flights is another example of an environmentally responsible business practice that has been included in WWF’s sustainable strategy. The business recognizes that encouraging customers to travel by means other than automobiles, such as trains and ships, is an effective form of environmentally conscious marketing.
IKEA, a significant brand that is focused on renewable energy and sustainable sourcing, has established a strategy called “People and Planet Positive” that supports eco-friendly practices, solar energy, and regenerative environmental activities. This green marketing campaign’s objective is to lessen the harmful effects that the company’s operations have on the surrounding ecosystem.
IKEA is a green marketing example of a company that is striving toward the creation of renewable energy that is 100 percent of the total energy used in its shops and the reduction of its already low percentage of waste to a proportion that is below the existing 15 percent.
In 2028, plastic will be shown on the door of the company’s existing inventory. For concerns of food safety and hygiene, IKEA will only continue to use plastic in a small number of its food products. Cutlery and straws, both of which are frequently thrown away, are being repurposed into more environmentally friendly alternatives.
IKEA Group’s 2020 revenue was over 40 billion euros. But less than 10 percent of the company’s packaging is plastic. The objective is to eradicate the dangerous element totally, therefore they’re open to any options, including a revolutionary packaging strategy.
One of the world’s most recognizable apparel brands, Timberland, uses stories about the environment to promote its products.
Timberland’s strategic partnerships and business director, Margaret Morey-Reuner says that they’ve done a lot of consumer research. if they put two comparable products side-by-side, one from Timberland and one from a competitor, most of the time, a customer will choose Timberland if it’s made with some sort of “green” element.
By launching its Timberloop product take-back program, Timberland joins an increasing number of clothing manufacturers that are prolonging the life of their products. Used Timberland footwear, apparel, and accessories can now be returned for a second chance at life. When items are returned, they will either be disassembled and the pieces recycled or repurposed into new products or they will be repaired and sold on a special website.
The organization is expanding its collaborations and testing new materials in order to create and implement a green marketing strategy. All product categories will be subject to environmental regulations (TEPS) in the near future, and the company plans to use only organic and renewable materials.
In 2019, when Apple introduced updated versions of the MacBook Air and the MacBook Mini, they made the declaration that these goods were produced from aluminum that was 100% recyclable. For this particular year, their tagline was “Truly Innovative products leave their mark on the world but not on the planet.”
The interpretation of this remark is that they are working toward the goal of developing new items while also reducing the amount of trash and electrical waste that they make. In addition to this, Apple ensures that the components and chemicals it uses in its products are not only secure for the consumer but also secure for the natural environment in which they will be used.
In 2021, about 20 percent of the material used in Apple products was recycled, the highest-ever use of recycled materials. In its 2022 Environmental Progress Report, Apple provided additional information on its progress, as well as its initiatives in recycling innovation and sustainable energy.
For instance, the claim that the exposure to nickel metal, which can sometimes be the cause of allergic responses, has been reduced as much as possible. Although Apple still has a long way to go before adopting environmentally friendly practices, the company has already made significant progress in this direction.
One company that is demonstrating leadership in the green movement is Unilever, which employs environmentally responsible practices. It encourages the use of recycled resources, which are better for the environment overall. Because of this strategy, 75 percent of the non-hazardous trash produced by the corporation is transported to recycling centers rather than being dumped in landfills.
As part of its corporate identity, the company implemented environmentally friendly marketing efforts. Through the provision of eco-friendly options, it raises environmental consciousness.
With a target of net-zero emissions across its value chain by 2039, Unilever launched Unilever Climate Promise which encourages its supply partners to show their shared values and commitment to reducing their GHG emissions footprint.
They claim that consumer decisions are responsible for 70 percent of the company’s overall carbon impact. This covers considerations such as whether items are in demand, as well as whether or not those things are used appropriately and disposed of in an appropriate manner, such as via recycling.
9. The Body Shop
Because of the industry’s history of animal experimentation and chemical manufacture, beauty brands are frequently scrutinized for creating eco-friendly and sustainable goods.
The Body Shop is a cosmetics retailer known for its commitment to environmental stewardship and cruelty-free product development.
In addition to producing goods that do not include the use of animals in testing, the firm also takes vital steps to address issues concerning the rights of farmers, humans, and women.
The Body Shop announced that its complete product collection will be Vegan Society-certified by 2023. The new objective coincides with the company’s view that animals should not be mistreated for beauty.
Vegan Society accreditation requires evaluating every supplier and producer of the company’s 3,700 raw ingredients. Currently, only 60% of The Body Shop’s items are vegan.
Among the key societal concerns that The Body Shop addresses is that of domestic violence. Aside from that, it is among the several brands that are aiming toward achieving 100% renewable energy.
10. Johnson & Johnson's
Johnson & Johnson sells bandages and other items for infants and children. It’s also well-known for the efforts it has made to build environmentally friendly procedures internally, including training staff on the job to teach them how to incorporate environmentally friendly practices into their work.
The procurement of renewable electricity by J&J is in line with the company’s larger climate action policy. They see a direct correlation between climate change and health, arguing that it alters the patterns of infectious diseases and raises concerns about drought and food scarcity.
As part of the Race to Zero/Business Ambition for 1.5 initiative, J&J has established the following interim goals:
- 100 percent of the world’s power will come from renewable sources by 2025.
- Reach carbon neutral operations by 2030, exceeding the Science-Based target of a 60 percent reduction in absolute Scope 1 and 2 emissions from 2016 levels.
- At least a 20% reduction in 2016 levels in the upstream value chain’s absolute emissions (Scope 3).
11. Too Good To Go
Every year, 10 million tons of food are thrown away at restaurants. To address this issue, Too Good To Go created an eco-friendly marketing strategy. People all across the world could join the fight against food waste by downloading a unique app where they can buy leftovers. The list contains meals and fruit that are thrown out at the end of service by some of the best restaurants in the country.
Consumers will be able to get high-quality food at a significantly lower price thanks to this green business practice example. A mobile app, Too Good To Go, saved 2.5 million meals from going to waste. CO2 emissions are reduced by an additional 2.50 kg for every saved meal.
Too Good To Go will offset unavoidable emissions by funding climate action efforts. In 2020, they financed initiatives in Peru and India; in 2021, they added Malawi and Turkey.
The food system is the largest deforestation driver. Too Good To Go proposes a sustainable food system by protecting the Peruvian Amazon and preserving biodiversity. The REDD+ Project teaches sustainable agriculture practices and offers jobs for locals.
Too Good To Go also agreed to finance a renewable energy project in India to offset its high-emitting web servers. This solar plant boosts India’s renewable energy system. This initiative reduces 659,000 tonnes of CO2e per year.
When it comes to protecting sports for future generations, Nike is one of the most forward-thinking green businesses. For Nike’s Move to Zero program, the company set out to decrease waste and its environmental footprint.
Nike has made it a point to inject its planet-saving objective into every facet of its operations. Nike’s answer to “what is green marketing?” is an all-encompassing view of the natural world. Switching to 100% renewable energy was a significant component of their green business practices example.
As an added bonus, Nike now sells clothing that is 50 percent recycled, and they offer a line that uses 20% recycled material in their shoes.
One of the instances of sustainable marketing is the clothing retailer H&M, which in recent years has made significant strides to improve its environmental policies and procedures. The “Conscious Collection” is the primary emphasis of H&M, which is recognized as one of the most environmentally responsible corporations operating in the fashion sector. The collection of clothing has 50% of items that are created from environmentally friendly materials.
The company has a recycling program that allows customers to return any brand of clothing in-store, and as we’ve seen in its Sustainability Report, it has set some great goals. It has a policy certified by CanopyStyle to avoid the destruction of ancient and endangered forests, and it makes use of renewable energy sources as part of its supply chain. Some of H&M’s items are made using recycled polyester and organic cotton.
Boden creates eco-friendly swimwear in a broad range of styles and colors, all made in the United Kingdom. Because of the tremendous impact that they have on our environment, universal brands like Boden have a responsibility to pay attention to the sourcing and supply chain.
Boden is well-known for its remarkable principles towards sustainability, which include supporting an ethical supply chain, lowering the company’s impact on the environment, and supporting charities that are also equally responsible and sustainable.
Additionally, the brand pledges to mend or replace any item you purchase from them if it does not last for at least 365 days. Boden claims it will employ 100% sustainable viscose, 100% organic and recycled cotton, 100% regenerated and recycled nylon, and 100% Lenzing-certified Tencel by 2025. It also stated an aim to employ entirely responsibly sourced denim by 2022.
One of the primary components of the legendary chocolate company’s new branding is a focus on environmental stewardship.
When it comes to their business methods, the corporation has made environmental sustainability their top concern – so much so that they’ve made it their aim by 2025 to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 50% from their own missions.
Hershey has done more than merely follow environmental trends, as one of the top 10 environmentally responsible companies in the United States. Hershey takes their charitable work one step further by recycling company items for use in the cause.
They have also used their blog to disseminate information on recent developments that might have an effect on the environment, such as a recent article regarding product packaging that can actually be consumed by the consumer.
Green Marketing Is The Way Forward
Green marketing examples from brands show that it is a concerted effort on the part of businesses to promote and advertise their environmentally friendly corporate practices and to encourage their customers and workers to do the same.
As a result of green marketing examples, people are more likely to choose environmentally-friendly products over their competitors.
Educate environmentally conscious customers about your eco-friendly marketing activities, establish a personal relationship with them, and include your company’s green initiatives into your brand’s narrative. Show the audience what your business is about that isn’t only about making money.