Welcome to Mythbusters: Green Marketing Edition, the game where we explore the role that environmental sustainability plays in multi-channel direct marketing. For the next 30 minutes we will put a dozen different green marketing myths to the test. We will uncover the myths and see if they stand up to the facts about how environmentally friendly initiatives support profitability in today’s direct marketing world. Adam Freedgood is your host for today’s game. Adam is the vice-chairperson of the DMA Committee on the Environment and Corporate Social Responsibility and director of business development for Quadriga Art, a multinational firm specializing in integrated direct marketing strategies for mission-driven organizations.
First we’ll state a myth that has to do with environmental sustainability and direct marketing. Each myth falls into one of four categories. We’ll then present some factual information to help confirm or bust the myth. A myth is “plausible” if it could be true under certain circumstances that are likely to happen often. We will alternate through contestants until all 12 myths are addressed. Contestants can ask the audience for help if the answer is not apparent.
These are examples of “go green, go paperless” logos, seals and messaging we see in the marketplace. One of the marketers using the “Save the Planet” seal is a home builder. “What if all the forests suddenly disappeared…” is known as a false dilemma…there is actually more forested land in the U.S. today than at the turn of the century. Although consumer preference is a DMA-supported marketing best practice, “paperless” billing and other paperless communications options do not exemplify 3BL or “triple bottom line” thinking. “Go Green, Go Paperless” frequently fits the criteria for “greenwash”. Unless a marketer specifies the specific environmental gains that are achieved by the “paperless” option. http://d3m0l1sh3r.deviantart.com/art/Go-Paperless-Poster-312802070http://www.verdeicorp.com/Pages/owner.aspx
The “go green, go paperless” statement is typically made in a very brief and unsupported way when it is promoted to consumers. The lack of proof about how going paperless represents a “green” activity is the problem here.
Source: Institute for Sustainable Communication. “Print vs digital media: false dilemmas and forced choices.” http://www.sustainablecommunication.org/downloads/whitepapers/printvsdigital_false-dilemmas-and-forced-choices.pdf
Greenwashing is considered deceptive advertising by the Federal Trade Commission. Marketers are also subject to regulation by BBB and private legal action by competitors and activist nonprofit organizations such as Friends of the Earth, NRDC and EcoJustice.
We produced the Winter 2010/11 direct marketing campaign with the goal of strategically supporting the sustainability objectives of meeting our acquisition targets, serving the ongoing needs of consumers, and of being good stewards of the resources we use. Direct Marketing and Publishing Operations departments worked collaboratively guided by our internal Environmental Policy & Vision Statement to identify, implement, and track meaningful environmental choices made throughout the life cycle of the campaign season.The overall environmental benefits of the choices we made included less energy and materials consumption, more benign manufacturing, and reduced emissions. Additionally, we promoted recycling of direct marketing packages that are recyclable, saved money, upheld response rates, and met our objectives.
FACT! The Green Echo is an award category that takes into account lifecycle environmental planning in marketing campaign execution. The award is judged on several criteria common to the traditional Echo Award including overall performance and creative execution.
The end-user impact portion of the environmental lifecycle for many paper products is a substantial portion of the total environmental impact from a C02 perspective. Source: AF&PA January 5, 2011 “Life Cycle Analysis presentation for printing and writing papers.” Catherine Foley et al.
Getting more consumers to recycle a product equates to measurable environmental benefit with no marginal cost to marketers.
This myth is confirmed in the case of many marketing mediums and products – catalogs and some magazines for example. Because every product, service and marketing approach has a different lifecycle environmental impact, we’ll call this myth “plausible” to avoid generalizing. Bottom line: it depends on the product but for most direct marketing approaches, consumer behavior (recycling, type of energy use, etc.) plays a big role.
Source: Greenpeace 4-2012; “How green is your cloud”? Data centers use 3% of all energy in the U.S. (doubled in past 5 years)–Carbon footprint currently ½the size of the entire air travel industry–Growth rate = 10 new coal or nuclear power plantsE-Waste – (Hardware…PCs, PDAs, Laptops, Servers, Routers, Mobile, etc.)–Pending EPA regulation: Hugely toxic. Lead. Mercury. Nasty stuff!
Source: 2008 Pitney Bowes, “The Truth About Green” – consumer attitudes survey. Source: USA EPA MSW Report.
The DMA Recycle Please logo mark helps close the perceptual gap for brands that market using direct mail.
http://www.ipc.be/en/Media/News/General%20news/USPS%20Greenhouse%20Gas%20Emissions%20Decrease%20by%20Nearly%201%20Million%20Metric%20Tons.aspxhttp://about.usps.com/news/national-releases/2011/pr11_085.htm$400mm in energy cost avoidance since FY07; potential savings: $150mm/yr2.5acre green roof and building retrofits in NYC: $1million in energy savings in first year$25mm in recycling revenue generated in 2011; recycling about 46% of solid waste for 215,000 tons.
95,000 vehicles. 69 million lbs CO2 avoided. Less time idling meant less fuel consumption. Discovery Channel’s Mythbusters tested and confirmed this myth in their own controlled experiment.
Example: outsourcing IT computer power – going from in-house dedicated servers to systems “shared” with thousands of other businesses. Source: “Google Apps: Energy Efficiency in the Cloud.” 2012. Google. http://static.googleusercontent.com/external_content/untrusted_dlcp/www.google.com/en/us/green/pdf/google-apps.pdf
Chain of custody graphic Source: www.papermartonline.com Who handles this in your organization? Purchasing. Production. Designers. Agency. Printer/mailhouse.
E-Waste recycling rate in the U.S. is only 15% compared with over 50% for paper products.
Retailers are profiting from recycling programs but this is one category where government regulation is catching up with voluntary efforts.
Source: Product Stewardship Institute. http://www.productstewardship.us/Electronics are a key focus in most states because today’s electronic devices contain lead, mercury other heavy metals and contaminates which are harmful to people and the natural environment at all stages of production and disposal. Electronics must not be sent to landfills…but there’s value in all that waste!
Statement: “America’s CEO’s agree that the primary corporate value created from sustainability is effective risk management.”
Myth Busters Game: Green Marketing Edition
Sed ut perspi undomnis oiste Natus aeiGreen Marketing Edition Presenter: Adam Freedgood Tweet: @thegreenophobe
The Game:• 30 minutes…goal: 12 Myths• Categories: • Green For Dummies • Print Direct Marketing • Digital Direct Marketing • Triple Bottom Line• Contestants & Ask The Audience
TripleGreen For Print Digital BottomDummies Line EASY EASY EASY EASYMEDIUM MEDIUM MEDIUM MEDIUM HARD HARD HARD HARD END GAME
Myth?...“Promoting „Go Green, GoPaperless‟ to customers isa leading green directmarketing strategy”
Based on a narrow set of attributes Ignores important environmental issues Example: saying paper is environmentally-preferable because it comes from a sustainably-harvested forest Not substantiated by easily accessible info Lack of reliable third party certification Example: paper products claiming X% recycled content without providing evidenceSource: TerraChoice 7 Sins of Greenwashing.
Tips for avoiding “false dilemmas and forcedchoices” in direct marketingSource: Institute for Sustainable Communication. “Print vs digital media: falsedilemmas and forced choices.”
Myth?...“Promoting „Go Green, GoPaperless‟ to customers isa leading green directmarketing strategy” NEXT MYTH
Myth?...“The marketing practiceknown as ‘greenwashing’is controversial but poseslittle legal risk to marketers”
Who “polices” greenwashing bymarketers in the U.S.?
Myth?...“The marketing practiceknown as ‘greenwashing’is controversial but poseslittle legal risk to marketers” NEXT MYTH
Myth?...“Green Echo Award criteria donot give an advantage toorganizations that fall within a“green” or environmentally-focused product or servicecategory”
• Not just for environmental orgs• Winners apply “cradle to cradle” principles• TIP: document DMA Green15 adherence• Standard Echo performance criteria apply!
Myth?...“Green Echo Award criteria donot give an advantage toorganizations that fall within a“green” or environmentally-focused product or servicecategory” NEXT MYTH
Myth?...“Consumer behavior affectsthe lifecycle environmentalimpact of direct marketing asmuch as other considerationssuch as production andtransportation”
Lifecycle Carbon Footprint Distribution Direct Marketing Medium: Catalogs Consumer Behavior MATTERS! Source: AF&PA 1/5/11 LCA For Printing & Writing Papers
DMA “Recycle Please” in actionImage source: Quadriga Art www.quadrigaart.com
Myth?...“Consumer behavior affectsthe lifecycle environmentalimpact of direct marketing asmuch as other considerationssuch as production andtransportation” NEXT MYTH
Myth?...“Delivering products andservices online or in the cloudrepresents a shift towardenvironmentally friendlycommunications comparedwith traditional print-basedmediums”
Behind every digital communication is a server, a datacenter and a consumer electronic device Where does the ENERGY come from?
Major data center operators tracked by: • % clean energy used • Energy transparency • Infrastructure siting • Energy efficiency & GHG mitigation • Renewables & advocacySource: Greenpeace 4-2012; “How green is your cloud”?
“How green is your cloud?”Activists re-brand an Apple store in this guerilla marketing maneuver
Is today‟s digital marketing „clean technology‟? Source: Mountaintop Removal Coal Mining, WV, USA http://itsgettinghotinhere.org/2007/03/14/vice-tv-on-mountaintop-removal/ Environmental impact of mountaintop removal coal mining for energy production
Myth?...“Delivering products and servicesonline or in the cloud represents ashift toward environmentallyfriendly communicationscompared with traditional print-based mediums” NEXT MYTH
Myth?...“Consumers have fairlyaccurate perceptions about thecontribution that admail makestoward total household waste”
Table Source: 2008 Pitney Bowes, “The Truth About Green” – consumer attitudes survey.Data Source: USA EPA MSW Report.
Closing the perceptual gap with consumers voluntary guided by EPA metrics highly visible FTC-approved zero marginal cost
Myth?...“Consumers have fairlyaccurate perceptions about thecontribution that admail makestoward total household waste” NEXT MYTH
Myth?...“USPS has struggled toimplement sustainabilitypractices amidst declining mailvolumes that reduce revenueavailable to invest in greenactivities”
$400 million in savings since 2007facility energy management systems 400 employee “green teams” Consolidated I.T. 41,000 alternative fuel vehicles green roofs and more
Myth?...“USPS has struggled toimplement sustainabilitypractices amidst declining mailvolumes that reduce revenueavailable to invest in greenactivities” NEXT MYTH
Myth?...“UPS saved 3 milliongallons of gasoline per yearby reconfiguring deliveryroutes to avoid left turns”
Myth?...“UPS saved 3 milliongallons of gasoline per yearby reconfiguring deliveryroutes to avoid left turns” NEXT MYTH
Myth?...“Green initiatives have along 3-5 year paybackperiod which puts them atodds with the fast-pacedworld of digital marketing”
“Cloudsourcing” solutions: GSA reduced energyconsumption by 90% and carbon emissions by 85% $285,000 annual energy cost savings (93% savings)
Crowdsourcing solutions to pervasive sustainability problemsProblem: Sustainable packagingSolution: Starbucks Betacup Competition multi-channel direct marketing innovation.
DMA Green15: PackagingEncourage packaging suppliers and designers to actively managethe environmental footprint of product packaging Avoid the “packaging hall of shame”
Myth?...“Green initiatives have a long3-5 years payback periodwhich puts them at odds withthe fast-paced world of digitalmarketing” NEXT MYTH
Myth?...“In print-basedmarketing, paper choicesplay a significant role inimproving environmentalimpact”
All paper is not created equal Consider lifecycle environmental impact when weighing alternatives or making the business case for one marketing medium over another
Certification programs establish a chain of custody avoid financial & reputational risk of sourcing illegal fiber protect biodiversity and human rights in developing countries add to brand value and pricing powerImage Source: www.papermartonline.com
Myth?...“In print-based marketing,paper choices play asignificant role in improvingenvironmental impact” NEXT MYTH
Myth?...“E-Waste is subject toregulation today, making ita critical consideration formarketers designingintegrated digitalcommunications”
More states are requiring producers to take responsibility for waste products 2006 2012Source: Product Stewardship Institute. http://www.productstewardship.us/
Myth?...“E-Waste is subject toregulation today, making it acritical consideration formarketers designing integrateddigital communications” NEXT MYTH
Myth?...“U.S. CEOs believe thatmarketing value created bysustainability is a lesser benefitthan operational gains such asproduction cost savings”
How Sustainability Creates Value According to Survey of 1,500 corporate CEO’s and executives in the U.S.Improved company or brand image 30%Cost savingsCompetitive advantage Q: “What are theEmployee satisfaction, morale and retention greatest benefits to yourProduct, service or market innovation organization inBusiness model or process innovation addressing sustainability issues?”New sources of revenue or cash flowEffective risk managementEnhanced stakeholder relationsOther 2% Source: MIT Sloan Management Review. “The Business of Sustainability.” Fall 2009. Berns, Townend, et al.
Myth?...“U.S. CEOs believe thatmarketing value created bysustainability is a lesser benefitthan operational gains such asproduction cost savings” END GAME
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