"Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs." - UN (1987)
What is Digital Marketing?
"Digital marketing is defined by the use of numerous digital tactics and channels to connect customers where they spend much of their time online" - HubSpot
So What is Sustainable Digital Marketing?
We have the definitions of sustainability and digital marketing but what does it actually mean when you put the two together? Sustainable marketing is very different to greenwashing, a term you may have heard before. Greenwashing creates the false impression that a brand/company's products are more sustainable and ethical than they actually are. Whereas sustainable marketing focuses on a company reducing its carbon footprint; this can be done by adjusting its digital marketing strategy in order to make it more sustainable and better for the environment.
Follow our tips below on how you can make your business's digital marketing more sustainable.
1. Clean Up Your Database
To reduce the size of your database without affecting business there are a few simple steps you can take such as: using validation on sign-up forms, removing duplicates of data and removing any inactive customers. Cutting the size of your database reduces the amount of storage required which in turn decreases any unnecessary energy usage.
2. Targeted Marketing
Sending out large numbers of emails increases energy usage, it is, therefore better to send out the right emails, at the right time, to the right customer. This avoids bulk and batch emails and marketing, which aren't useful for marketing purposes whilst also reducing excessive energy usage.
3. Shrink Imagery
Images contribute to a large source of carbon emissions for companies. It's easy for an image's file size to be bigger than needed. Shrinking your files using tools such as TinyPNG can help to reduce file size without impacting the quality of the content.
Try to limit the use of videos and gifs in your marketing strategy as these use large amounts of excess energy and slow download speeds. Reducing their use will also mean they have maximum impact when you do use them as they won't have been previously overused.
4. Include Sustainability in your KPIs (Key Performance Indicators)
Creating targets based on sustainability will help develop the overall sustainability of a company. Although carbon emissions can be a difficult thing to measure directly, you can create more measurable goals such as aiming to reduce image file sizes by at least 20% or removing any duplicates on your database. These may seem like small steps, but over time these will add up and begin to reduce the carbon footprint from digital marketing making your company more sustainable.
Why Should You Go Green With Your Marketing?
Not only is going green with your marketing strategy better for the planet, by reducing the amount of excess energy used by your company, but it can also make your brand more attractive to a wider audience. Gen Z in particular are increasingly conscious of sustainability and the impact we have on the planet.
Another reason to go green is if a business is tendering for the public sector, then it could be asked to demonstrate its sustainability strategy and evidence. This can be the difference in winning a tender.
Having a sustainable strategy will also allow you to show off and demonstrate your core values that are actually important to key stakeholders.
Going green with digital marketing can have a real impact on the sustainability of your company, evidence of this was shown after the introduction of GDPR in 2018 has already decreased marketing emails by 1.2 billion per day, which has reduced CO2 emissions by 360 tonnes per day which is the equivalent of saving 650,000 trees - CW Jobs
We hope you found this blog useful and gave you some ideas of how a sustainable marketing strategy could work with your business.
If you have any comments please leave them below, or if you have any further questions on how you can improve your digital marketing strategy speak to our team today.