Global Industry Analysts, Inc. released a report in April 2011 stating “Global Green Marketing Market to Reach $3.5 Trillion by 2017″.
If you’re like most business owners, the thought of developing and implementing an effective green marketing strategy and systems is daunting. This is especially true if your marketing strategy includes promoting the environmental and social benefits of your products to other businesses. As the owner of a growing small or medium sized business, you don’t have a budget for large marketing campaigns. You may not even know where to find prospects and how to engage with them to generate sales and loyal customers. You may be overwhelmed with all of the marketing solutions that are out there, but you don’t know where to start to determine which strategies are right for your product and your business. You are keenly aware of the risk of not getting it right and having your environmental marketing efforts backfire and land your company with a reputation for greenwashing. You know that not having a marketing plan and effective marketing systems in place is costing your company in lost sales and preventing your business from growing to the next level.
Business-to-business marketing can be costly and time consuming. In the past, all you needed was a strategically placed ad in the Yellow Pages and some well-designed technical bulletins and specification sheets. Those days are long gone and now you’re faced with a dizzying array of marketing channels that include websites, online forums and reviews, social media, blogs, webinars, press releases, free white papers and reports, in addition to the more traditional methods like direct mailing, cold calling, print advertising and trade shows.
As with most things, when it comes to green marketing, one size does NOT fit all. When designing your green marketing campaign, you must first understand the motivations and interests behind the buying decisions of your ideal prospects. Then you must translate the environmental benefits and features of your products into outcomes that are most relevant and top of mind for them. Then you must tailor your messaging to show how your product will help them achieve those outcomes. You must have the supporting data and metrics to back up those claims.
B2B purchasers are often resistant to switching suppliers or products to avoid the hassles of change and uncertainty, and fear of making a bad decision even if the alternative looks better for the company. Despite internal or external pressure to make greener choices, you will likely be faced with a lack of awareness or priority on green benefits or fear of being “greenwashed” on the part of the buyer.
Relationship-building, credibility and transparency are more critical than ever in earning trust with your prospects before the sale. It’s up to you to devise strategies to educate your prospects in ways that overcome objections to potentially higher up-front costs and resistance to adoption of emerging green products and technologies. The most effective marketing systems generate a constant stream of new leads and a follow-up system to convert those prospects to loyal and happy customers.
At Sustainability Edge Solutions, we work with industry leaders who wish to systematically improve the environmental and social impacts of their products and master the best practices of business-to-business marketing built on a foundation of international standards and life cycle assessment. We help you build a solid foundation of credibility based on nationally and internationally recognized frameworks and methodologies. This will enable you to proactively market your environmentally and socially preferable products and manage your promotions to avoid misleading claims. We can help you leverage your efforts to reach your ideal target audience online and offline with compelling marketing campaigns that increase sales, market share and customer loyalty.
- Effective green marketing requires that you understand the green marketplace and what drives the buying behaviour of the ideal prospects for your environmentally and socially preferable products.
- You must develop a deeper understanding of the mindset, desires and motivations of the buyers of your product, so you can craft strategic marketing messages that magnetize them to seek out and choose your products and services.
- It is critical to ensure that your green marketing efforts don’t backfire and leave your company accused of greenwashing by building in the elements that lend credibility to your marketing claims.
Fortunately, there are recognized methodologies, systems, practices and tools that lend credibility to your environmental claims and foster the trust and loyalty of your customers. We have developed a complimentary B2B Green Marketing Roadmap™ that walks you through our five essential elements to developing a successful business-to-business green marketing strategy.
Request our complimentary “B2B Green Marketing Roadmap™”, to get you started on developing the mindset, clarity, messaging and systems for successful marketing of your environmentally and socially preferable products. Take action now for valuable step-by-step green marketing guidance, insights and training that you can implement today to transform your green marketing efforts!