The case for sustainable marketing in a circular economy

Shannon Fitzpatrick

Shannon Fitzpatrick, director of promoting, Gumtree Australia
There’s little doubt that sustainability is vital to Australians, and as shoppers we’re more and more making buy selections primarily based on manufacturers’ environmental views and actions.
According to the 2021 Gumtree Trading in the Circular Economy Report, 81% of Australians are already altering the best way they eat items to be extra environmentally pleasant now in comparison with 10 years in the past. In truth, greater than 4 in 5 say sustainable practices inform their buy selections when shopping for model new. This shift in shopper behaviour presents a possibility for manufacturers to additionally take into consideration how they’ll change into extra sustainable.
From a marketing perspective, manufacturers concentrate on the shopper journey and the assorted factors in time that they need to talk with their clients. Sustainability makes it attainable to succeed in them not simply on the level of discovery or buy, however all through the lifecycle of a product and its environmental footprint.
The candy spot between buyer lifecycle and product lifecycle
The manufacturers main the best way in sustainability are these which can be already contemplating the total lifecycle of their merchandise. For instance, when Volvo introduced its plans to cut back its carbon emissions by 2026 by constructing vehicles utilizing metal made with out fossil fuels, the corporate stated it noticed environmental sustainability as a key a part of its attraction to consumers.
IKEA, alternatively, is concentrating on clients when merchandise attain the top of their lifecycle. Through its Buy Back program, the Swedish firm buys its personal used furnishings to resell it, extending the product’s lifespan and avoiding it ending up in landfill.
Brands that put sustainability on the coronary heart of their enterprise and marketing methods are in a position to attain shoppers all through each their buyer journey and their product lifecycle — translating into extra touchpoints and a longer brand-customer relationship.
Opportunities in the circular economy
As shoppers have gotten more and more aware of their environmental footprint, they’re additionally transferring away from a using-and-disposing mannequin. Instead, they’re opting for a circular economy. In the previous 12 months, 86% of Australians have saved pre-loved gadgets from going into landfill by promoting them in the circular economy. This shift may see the worth of circular buying and selling in Australia to be over roughly $48 billion — up 89% since 2011.
Brands which can be sustainable however haven’t tapped into the circular economy are lacking out on the chance to have interaction with their clients in this house. For instance, greater than 2 in 3 sellers on Gumtree are utilizing the funds from the sale of their pre-loved items to purchase one thing new, whereas 9 in 10 look to improve the merchandise they’re promoting with a new one. This exhibits companies have the prospect to speak to shoppers all through varied factors of their life — once they transfer out of dwelling, get married, have a household, upsize their dwelling or automotive.
The case for sustainable marketing
A model’s relationship with its clients may be for a lifetime. When a model thinks and acts in a sustainable means, it will probably have a dialog with its clients that’s a lot longer than simply at that entry or discovery level.
Sustainable marketing is about longevity and switching from short-term objectives to long-term success. It happens when a firm aligns its marketing technique with its sustainability targets. But most significantly, it isn’t simply for entrepreneurs, it is a chance for companies to behave in a means that’s significant to shoppers, the planet and their complete organisation.
Brands have to hear to what’s vital to Australians and assist the neighborhood the place they function — this contains serving to the setting. Sustainability must matter to the enterprise itself and what it stands for — its personal function and the position it performs in clients’ lives and in the world we dwell in.

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