7 Planet-Positive Brands Working for the Greater Good
Millennials remain the most sustainability-conscious generation and are ready to spend “more on products and services seen as sustainable or coming from socially and environmentally responsible companies,” according to Credit Suisse.
With such a growing interest surrounding brands that take their corporate social responsibility very seriously - some even regarding their commitment and duty to *society* at large to be more important than the immediate interest of their stakeholders - we decided it was about time to take an in-depth look at how these companies are promoting their brand values through their marketing messaging and efforts.
From attractive website popups to summits to successful social media campaigns, here’s how 7 retailers are using their digital marketing strategies for the greater good.
1. Naja - Copywriting at a micro level ✍
This eco-conscious, fair-trade lingerie, activewear, and swimwear brand has caught everyone's attention and we think it’s pretty ace.
At a cursory google search of the brand’s name, users will find a link to their website among the top results on the search engine results page (SERP). The Naja brand philosophy is explicitly communicated in the headline and meta description, jumping over any mention of seasonal sales or must-have pieces.
Once on the site, the new user interacts with a popup, again informing them of the company mission - to empower women and to “do good,” which is a great way of making a lasting first impression.
2. Reformation - Doing the math ➕
Reformation is a Los Angeles based label whose purpose is to “lead and inspire a sustainable way to be fashionable.”
Aside from an exceptional “who we are” page, powerful hashtag game (#jointhereformation), and fascinating “stories” tab, Reformation is truly proficient at expanding its eco-friendly message throughout its product pages.
Each garment has a special “everything you always wanted to know about me” section, where users can learn about the garment’s position on what the brand calls the RefScale.
The RefScale shows a buyer precisely what impact each garment has on the environment, looking at carbon dioxide savings, water savings, and waste savings.
This is pretty inspiring material, right?
3. Warby Parker - The storyteller extraordinaire 📖
The eyewear brand has become renowned for its “buy a pair, give a pair” action, which is described with much detail on its eCommerce site.
The way they communicate their story with ease is mesmerizing.
From the suggestive, engaging headline: “The whole story begins with you” to the very clear infographic taking a user through the four steps of the brand’s initiative, it doesn’t take too long for the readers to learn how the whole thing works.
In short, here's how their initiative works: customers shop for glasses, the company makes monthly donations to nonprofit partners, and, then, those nonprofits train people in developing countries, teaching them to give basic eye tests, sell glasses, and spread awareness.
But even when a user heads straight to the “store” section of the site, not making it to the “buy a pair, give a pair” page, they will still learn about Warby Parker’s great actions.
In the welcome email that they send customers, the brand doesn’t miss the opportunity to include a dedicated CTA encouraging new clients to read their story.
4. Patagonia - Being established as a thought leader 💡
Established back in the 70s, the outdoor attire brand Patagonia has always been ahead of its time with its environmental activism.
The brand’s eCommerce site provides a slideshow of images on its homepage, quickly giving the visitor a peek of its sustainability vision.
Nevertheless, it’s only when a user clicks on the tab “Inside Patagonia” in the navigation bar that they actually learn what this brand is all about.
The site has a complete section dedicated to “environmental and social responsibility," giving an in-depth analysis of its philosophy, initiatives, and impact with remarkable diplomacy.
But Patagonia doesn’t just talk to its guests about what the brand is doing for the environment. It also takes to social media to retweet news and feature articles relating to issues (e.g. global warming) as a whole.
Additional measures through which Patagonia has managed to communicate its brand philosophy to the world include:
In 2017, Patagonia made the industry headlines when it revealed that it was donating 100% of its Black Friday 2016 sales to organizations that support the environment. This facilitated the sustainable brand to reach more users and potential customers and raise awareness for matters such as climate change.
5. LUSH - Getting heard 🔊
Lush is taking its environmental activism beyond the realms of retail, and it is one of the biggest players in the ethical purchasing world.
Most people link Lush to sweet, flowery smells and technicolor bath bombs, but there’s much more to this cosmetics brand than looking and smelling fabulous.
Not only are their products 100% vegetarian, but the retailer is also renowned for fighting animal testing, utilizing eco-friendly packaging, and just generally doing everything in their power to protect the environment and with everything that this entails.
The question is: how do they spread the word about their uncompromising hardcore values and global mission?
One way is through their YouTube channel Lush Cosmetics: a channel that features clips and podcasts where philanthropic figures discuss a broad range of issues, from Brexit to reverential ecology.
One other thing to mention here is the Lush Summits. The yearly, two-day summit draws together charities, speakers, and grassroots organizations engaging in conservation, human rights, energy, environment, and celebrating more than ten years of the Lush Charity Pot.
6. People Tree - Sharing on social 🌱
People Tree, the London based sustainable and fair trade brand, is producing “fashion that’s good for the planet.” This brand stands out for its powerful and engaging social media strategy, to the development of which they’re using channels such as Instagram and Pinterest to spread the sustainable word.
For instance, the brand has a photo-sharing campaign on Instagram, where people across the globe can share their eco-friendly style with one another using the hashtag: #lovepeopletree.
People Tree is also going viral on Pinterest, with a diverse range of boards that have been selected to engage and not just sell. They even have a selection of inspirational quotes, encouraging Pinners to shop ethically.
7. H&M - Harnessing the power of email marketing 📧
The Swedish retail giant H&M is also doing its part to make eco-friendly practices up-to-date and fashionable.
In an email marketing campaign, the store encourages recipients and clients to “be a fashion recycler,” by leaving unwanted textiles at their local store.
The copy closes with a CTA to “read more,” which once clicked redirects the user to a section on its Garment Collection Program. Here, potential customers can first read about the purpose of this program, which is to “set out for a sustainable fashion future,” before finding out how the program works.
By including this positive and sustainable message into its conventional email marketing, H&M shows that to be environmentally-friendly and to be stylish is one and the same.
Are you feeling inspired now?🚀
While sustainability becomes a "growing priority" for young consumers, we consider all of these marketing tactics are preparing the way for a future where eco-friendly shopping rules.
But, aside from their philanthropic efforts, there’s a different reason why we applaud the brands highlighted in this post: for their ability to tell their brand’s story in a very successful way.
Of course, not every brand will have the time, resources, or opportunity to direct all of its efforts into corporate social responsibility and sustainable practices overnight. But as they say, Rome wasn't built in a day.
But if you're ready to start shifting toward a sustainable future, examining what other brands are doing can offer you valuable insight into what you can do about communicating your brand’s core values to consumers in an engaging, encouraging, and creative way.
If you want to make the world a better place, we can help you connect your planet-positive business with other mindful humans online.