Sustainability is like a dance to me you either love it, and really want to do it or you think that you just have two left feet and avoid it at all costs!
I regularly bicker with my husband about washing out our baked beans tins to recycle them, however how do you convince a big company who thinks that they have better things to deal with, like making money, to think about the environment?
Clownfish founder and former chief executive Diana Verde Nieto tried to do just that last week at the European CMO Conference when she took to the stage and declared that for a company to be successful it needs to be sustainable in three areas: people, profit and planet.
Diana explained how people choose brands that resonate with their values and the opportunities this gives advertisers. She challenged marketers in the room to think about the purpose of their brand beyond its function.
Several brands such as Innocent, Philips, Nike and most recently and possibly the loudest Pepsi, with its refresh project, have put sustainability at the heart of its offering.
These brands have embraced what Diana calls the “new era of branding”. This new era will see brands shifting their offerings from marketing to serving, selling to touching/enabling and campaigning to moving people.
Despite the fact that Diana is parting ways with the sustainability communications consultancy that she founded in 2002, to take on venture new, she still believes that it is easier than most brands think to make sustainability a pillar of their offering.
I really don’t think that brands go out of their way to not be sustainable - at least not anymore - so what is the barrier? Not sure I have the answer yet, but if it anything like learning the running man from the early 90’s it might seem a little impossible at first but then once you get the hang of it you are itching to show everyone when you have nailed the moves!