Final Post (How Sustainability Marketing Impact Me?)

by narissasu ~ March 21st, 2013

Has it changed how you think about how you live your life as a consumer?

Learning more about sustainability definitely made me a more conscious consumer in terms of what I buy when I go to grocery stores, I tend to look at the description more to see where the ingredients are produced, and often time go for products that are produced locally not only it cost less but it also is more sustainable. I also would always bring my own water bottle when I leave the house to avoid buying plastic bottles that I know I will have to get rid of later on.

Has it changed how you think about business?

Different companies are motivated to becoming more green for different reasons, but overall, by adopting and becoming more sustainable help companies countless benefits such as to enhance brand image and increase their competitive advantage in the market. Further more, through development of more sustainable practices, efficiency is more likely to increase, because of better use of resources, operations costs will also decrease saving firms massive amount of money.

My perspective about sustainable living and sustainability society, knowing that every action I take could contribute to how the world is going to be in the future. If the society continue to embrace the importance of sustainable community and are more actively involved, the Earth could look exactly the same as it did at the beginning.


Water is everywhere, sometimes we just dont think about it

by narissasu ~ March 12th, 2013

I recently come across reading about a manufacturer of paint who was supplying additive free paints, but also supplying them in dry powder form so you mix them with water on-site.  This really captured my imagination because it ticked so many boxes, little water used in the manufacture, not spending resources transporting lots of bulky, heavy water in the paint, using less fuel and less pollution, and the benefits goes on.

That got me thinking about how much other things we consume that requires water as one of their main ingredient. If we could use dry ingredients and mix them ourselves would that not be infinitely more sensible?

Many soft drink product contains minimum of 50 percent of water: I recycle a lot and use isotonic and hi-carb drinks most of which are available in powder form, yet shelves are full of ready mixed soda, non 100% fruit juice, and sports drinks which contain mainly water. There would seem to be a big product development opportunity here. Not only could we make a contribution in minimize the need in shipping a huge quantity of water from one location to another, but the cost of transportion could as well be cut dramatically. This benefits not only the company but to the environment and much more.

Water will become an increasingly valuable commodity: already water companies are planning for the future and looking to sophisticated demand management schemes. Perhaps we can start thinking about dry product/ingredients that could potentially be cost saving for all parties!

What Does it Really Means: Biodegradable vs. Compostable

by narissasu ~ March 6th, 2013

What does it really means when people say biodegradable product vs. compostable product? People often associate both as the same, in fact, compostable and industrial compostable are different. Look around you. Everything you see right now is biodegradable. From the flat panel large screen TV to the plastic fork in you fast food bag. It’s the perfect term for the greenwasher because “biodegradable” only means that a material will break down “over a period of time.” It could take a year, ten years, or ten thousand years. It’s all biodegradable.

On the other hand, “compostable” actually means something. To use that term a product or material must obtain a specific scientific criteria. Essentially, a material must break down into measurably tiny and environmentally benign parts within a specifically limited time frame.

To avoid “greenwashing” a company should clarify which environment (home or industrial). Many consumers believe the two terms mean the same. A compostable plastic is not inherently better for the environment. Dont be green washed!

The Green Fashion the new Trend?

by narissasu ~ March 2nd, 2013

Pacific Centre Mall, in the high-fashion heart of Vancouver, is probably not a place you associate with sorting trash. Yet that is exactly what they do, from the cardboard, plastic and returnables from merchants and customers to the organic compost diversion in the food court. Throw in a bit of waste-to-energy from the stuff that can’t be segregated and you have a Zero Waste Shopping Mall.

So how do you tell that story in a way that appeals to the fashionistas while still include the sustainability branding of parent company?

Well, consumers enjoys a decent sale.

By framing the ‘Green At Work’message in a 100% OFF price tag format, Unicycle Creative got instant shopper attention and described Pacific Centre’s waste diversion rate in one clean graphic.

The team at Pacific Centre went one step further, designing an in-mall Recycled Runway Fashion Show, using local artists to create a stunning ready to wear again collection. Unicycle designed a pair of banners to frame the show and communicate key zero waste messages.

Shopping isn’t disappearing anytime soon. I personally believe that putting sustainability on the radar of fashion shoppers is an important step in creating the conditions that will put pressure on all parts of the retail supply chain to green up their act and zero waste can be a good solid start.


New Model for the Environment

by narissasu ~ February 13th, 2013

Pay as you drive (PAYD), insurance programs that encourage less and safer driving that are growing in popularity across the country. First, PAYD discourages overconsumption often associated with flat rate pricing. Second, it incentivizes shared use of resources during peak periods in order to avoid excess investments in capacity that would otherwise be under utilized for much of the time.

Saving cash and the environment are top priorities for many consumers today. In response, insurance companies in recent years have rolled out programs offering cheaper premiums for less time behind the wheel.

In recent years, several PAYD models have emerged that are having a positive impact on the environment. For example, smart grid initiatives provide consumers with tiered pricing models that incentivize them to reduce or shift energy use during peak periods. Additionally, PAYD models in cloud computing allow consumers the flexibility to add computing capacity in real-time, while avoiding the need to overinvest in server capacity utilized only during peak periods.

Such a model is enabled through the tracking of personal driving data. Consumers self-report miles driven (and validate periodically through inspection) or do so automatically through an active OnStar system or small telematics device that plugs into a diagnostic port under the dashboard. Insurance companies then effectively create personalized rates based on actual car use.

Potential benefits for the environment from PAYD are significant: The State of California estimated that subscribers may reduce miles driven by 10% or more, saving consumers money while reducing accidents, congestion and air pollution.

A wide variety of companies are now in a position to consider testing PAYD models with their customers, especially those that are price sensitive, tend to use a product less than the average or demand additional services during peak periods. While consumers may focus on saving money, the real benefits may be saved for the environment.

Some counter argument have been encountered as to how much one drive, has no baring on how safe driven on the road. Given the option to choose the type of car insurance, I believe this PAYD program will vastly be beneficial to the driver as well as the environment.

The Right Thing to Do? Ethical Sourcing

by narissasu ~ February 5th, 2013

Why aren’t all the major food companies develop ethical sourcing policies for their ingredients? What are the biggest factors holding these companies back from doing the right thing for the environment an

d society? Should the company be concern more on what is the right thing to do, or whether it is the right thing to do for business success? Often time companies focused more on the later one which is the fundamental change that companies must embrace.

Using Starbucks Coffee for example, ingredient policies, or standards, are an essential part of the company’s sourcing approach. After many years of experience in working in area of connecting standards with technical assistance and financing, Starbucks were able to see the long-term success in a result of the supplier. That is why they took the advantage and work hand in hand with producers to help improve quality and to ensure environmental and social best practices.

Starbucks developed the policies in collaboration with Conservation International decade ago known as C.A.F.E. Practices, this stringent verification program is a set of more than 200 social, economic and environmental indicators (evaluated by third-party organizations) that help the company to evaluate and reward producers of high-quality, socially responsible and sustainably grown coffee. In doing so, C.A.F.E. Practices helps to build more resilient farming communities that can more readily adapt to change in weather patterns or any coffee related challenges such as pests or disease issues while meeting our continued need for high quality Arabica coffee.

In short, I personally believe that Starbucks made a good decision in investing in responsible sourcing policies that can ensure them a long-term supply of high quality ingredients that help foster a better future for farmers and a more stable climate for the planet.  All of which are critical elements of our success at Starbucks Coffee Company.

Impact on the Environment via Mobile Phone App

by narissasu ~ February 2nd, 2013

In today’s world, there are many great benefits of buying locally produced products, Due to their shorter distance travel to the market they tend to have less environmental footprint. However, less and less attention are paid to how far shoppers travel to make their purchases and how much impact they have on the environment.

Interestingly, many consumers view eCommerce as more eco-friendly than shopping on Main Street because they don’t have to travel from their homes to do so. However, according to the environmental impact studies on the topic are mixed, and the actual answer depends on factors such as the number of products purchased at a time, the density of the surrounding area and the distance traveled to a store. Moreover, online is estimated to represent only 7 percent of retail sales in the United States, with the vast majority of goods and services still being sold through traditional retailers.

Given that the overwhelming majority of sales are made offline, the Internet and Internet-enabled mobile devices can have a significant impact how people shop when used to facilitate offline transactions closer to home. To that end, new mobile players with location-based services are emerging that aim to drive hyperlocal shopping.

For local businesses, such apps provide new ways to reach local audiences and drive foot traffic. Consumers benefit from the added convenience of finding what they need nearby. The environment also wins as consumers travel fewer miles to shop.

Product locatorsJiWire recently launched Compass, a mobile advertising platform that enables retailers to target mobile users with relevant ads based on the location. What is interesting is that Compass can geolocate products from more than 200,000 retailers, allowing customers to then text or call retailers to put an item on hold for purchase. Not only does this create a superior consumer experience, but it enables consumers to avoid extra trips to make a purchase.

Emerging mobile apps are motivating more consumers to shop locally. eCommerce was once hailed as a more eco-friendly way to shop because it eliminated the need to drive to a store. Now it should be mobile’s turn to help reduce the distance consumers have to travel to shop.

Is Being Sustainable Enough for 3M Success?

by narissasu ~ January 25th, 2013

3M, longtime sustainability leader plugging away, creating new products such as pipe linings, industrial paint application product, reflectivity mirror film, and Novec Fluids, that will help the world save energy, water, waste…and lots of money.

For good reason, the $30-billion company has long been held up as a role model of how to manage innovation. In the sustainability realm, 3M pioneered what now seems like an obvious idea: avoiding pollution before having to clean it up. The company’s simply named Pollution Prevention Pays program (3Ps program) has saved many billions of dollars over 36 years.

3M’s sustainability leadership has come mainly from its eco-efficiency success, but these practices are increasingly the norm in business. There was abundant evidence of the company pivoting to make sustainability a driver of business growth as well. Many companies start talking about sustainability efforts before they’ve really made significant changes to the company or its products. Although 3M may have the opposite problem — getting too little brand and marketing value out of its efforts — it is usually smarter to execute first, and then tell your story. In 3M’s case, it’s nice to see the company get out there doing it.

Several capabilities that enable 3M to innovate successfully include the culture, the intentional scenario planning or “forward mapping” within the research teams and the identification of seven core enablers or components of innovation. Through these attributes and a dedication to innovation throughout the organization, 3M has clearly established itself as an innovation leader.

However, while 3M is an excellent innovator, I believe that there are always room for growth outside of being sustainable, a couple of areas such as complacency, insular, product/technology focused, engaging organization as a whole, and/or become customer driven.

3M is clearly a leading innovator and has done a significant amount of work to innovate consistently. I believe that innovation needs to be extended beyond the product and beyond the bounds of the organization, since Business innovation and customer experience are two of the most sustainable innovations and differentiators, and there’s really very little attention paid to these concepts in any organization. With 3M’s  existing capabilities, building these qualities could help 3M achieve exceptional differentiation compare to its competitors.


Heineken vs. Sustainability

by narissasu ~ January 12th, 2013

Dutch beer giant Heineken recently launched an online innovation platform called Heineken Ideas Brewery. The focus of the challenge will is to come up with new ideas for sustainable beer packaging.

Criteria for the challenge are:

1) How can we ensure that a larger amount of beer packaging will be re-used or recycled?

2) What kind of new material would significantly improve the lifecycle of beer packaging?

3) What are your ideas concerning packaging to maximize transport efficiency?

I believe this bottle challenge is a fantastic decision for Heineken in terms of benefiting the environments as well as meeting the criteria for being sustainable marketing. The main goal for the challenge is designed to motivate Heineken consumers to return and recycle bottles, by doing so, the return rate of bottles/cans can have a positive impact on the environment while reducing a vase amount of waste. The campaign of the sustainability could bring a positive image to the company, more recognition and positive feedback from the consumers.


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