Published by Antoinette Siu on 03 Apr 2012 at 04:15 pm
The Spring of Sustainability series continues. This week, we are joined on Monday and Tuesday by Shel Horowitz and Ellis Jones.
Kicking off the week, we listened to Shel Horowitz, author of Guerilla Marketing Goes Green, talk about ethical marketing practices. As we’re all probably familiar with, traditional marketing approaches are very “in-your-face,” Horowitz points out.
“Buy! Buy! Buy!,” he laughs.
The distinctions may be small, like “sending pixels rather than paper,” but the difference is environmentally significant. Think about all the unwanted junk mail, advertisement, and coupons we get. When it comes to leveraging technology, the conversation of course does not escape social media—our modern day marketing. Social media marketing should be at least 90 percent informational, not self-promotional, Horowitz believes.
His advice to businesses? If you don’t go green, you are going out of business because your customers will demand it. In the next couple of years, it’s safe to say that we will continue seeing this shift toward green and ethical business practices.
Best practices are important for companies, but it’s harder to measure individual impacts, those smaller acts of green.
“Going green is a process, there’s always more you can do… Never let people tell you what you can’t do, just don’t them stand in your way,” Horowitz concludes.
On Tuesday, author of The Better World Handbook, Ellis Jones went more into how we can be ethically conscious as consumers. “Voting with your dollars,” as Jones puts it, is an important way of communicating to businesses that you support them going green. Like voting, how we spend our money is a direct testament to how responsibly we consume.
He’s also found that companies—no matter their size—pay close attention to consumer feedback. So long as we make the point that we’re supporters and fans of their products, they’ll listen to what we have to say.
Twenty years ago, Corporate Social Responsibility reports did not exist. Now, they’re written by the businesses themselves. A lot of them “prefer to keep it in the dark,” as you may assume, but that’s another way of making sure corporations are being transparent.
Lastly, Jones shares two actions you can take to become a responsible consumer: Change your bank (go to local credit unions) and go to your institutions (schools, community centers, stores) to find out what options they are providing.
Jones sums up, “Magnify your voice and begin making those changes on the larger level.”
The Spring of Sustainability series continues. On Wednesday, John Perkins will discuss Dreaming a New World: Indigenous Shaman Meets Economic Hit Man, followed by Randy Hayes on Can We Ecologize Capitalism? and Kenny Ausubel on From Breakdown To Breakthrough: Reimagining Civilization in the Age of Nature.
Leave a Reply