Why should a business use sustainable development in its marketing?

Why should a business use sustainable development in its marketing?

As the threat of climate change has been given increased attention over the last few months, the public has begun to investigate the level of corporate responsibility businesses have taken for their portion of the problem.

Unfortunately, it is slowly being realised organisations are not taking the same level of responsibility for their actions and their environmental impact as first anticipated. However, as a continuing of growing businesses means larger carbon footprints, lack of address of this trend is out of the question.

The good news is business and sustainability can coexist.

Sustainable development is becoming a strategic imperative, not a choice

The more focused the world becomes on eco-friendly business models, the faster sustainable development will become a strategic imperative for organisations rather than an operational choice.

But, as sustainable development will become more than just a means of meeting social and environmental concerns, focus on corporate responsibility will not just go towards meeting corporate sustainability goals but can become a method of maintaining a sustainable comparative advantage.

Sustainable development can create a comparative advantage for an organisation

Although sustainable development is often misunderstood as requiring a business to change its profitable business models to benefit the environment, in reality, the idea behind sustainable development is still to allow for an organisation’s economic enrichment.

It does not need to impact the bottom line

In the true sense of the term, sustainable development is meant to describe a method of achieving a profit for an organisation without causing further damage to the environment.

Therefore, if an organisation properly utilises more carbon-efficient technologies in efforts to adopt more environmentally friendly operations, they should be able to. This will not only benefit the environment but stand out from its competitors in a way that will generate attention, without an impact on the bottom line.

Sustainability efforts can benefit an organisation financially

As the right attention is now being paid to producing more affordable, ecologically efficient technology, profitability and sustainability are no longer mutually exclusive. In fact, examples of companies who have properly embraced sustainable development indicate that employing sustainability can improve profitability.

It can increase business efficiency and consumer choice

The profit increase in sustainable development is for many reasons surrounding operational efficiency and social recognition. But among them is the fact that consumers are more inclined to invest their money into brands that show they care about the environment. For example, current trends reveal that, although 66% of global consumers are willing to pay more for sustainable goods, this number will likely further increase as three out of four Millenials are willing to pay for more sustainable products.

It’s not just a good cause

Clearly, sustainable development is becoming more than just a choice or a sales pitch. As the environmental business practice is not only becoming more possible with improved innovations but a soon to be better heavily imposed obligation, sustainable development is not just a good cause anymore. It is a method for a comparative advantage over competing and lesser environmentally inclined companies.

Perhaps your business is wanting to or already is employing eco-friendly business practice but it’s not something you have not properly marketed or included in your brand image yet. The question is, does your business want to take advantage of the reward that sustainable development can bring beyond philanthropy, before the corporate reckoning?

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The benefits of social media marketing

As proud participants of the internet age, it comes as no surprise that social media is taking the world by storm. But, if you look at the statistics surrounding social media, it’s surprising to find that a substantial amount of people don’t understand it.

According to the Social Media Examiner Industry Report, around 96% of marketers are currently participating in social media marketing, but 85% of participants don’t know which of it’s tools are best to use. So, while many know the use of social media is a must for market planning, they are not clear on how or why they should adopt it.

Education is key to better business growth

Like most things, with knowledge comes power. Hence, if you as a business owner can better educate yourself on the benefits and affordances of social media, you can use it for the potential you know it has but never been able to fully realise.

Need for education is growing

With social media usership growing and internet users averaging around 136 minutes per day, an understanding of social media will become not just beneficial in optimising market exposure but necessary for market survival.

Advantages of Social Media

To help you on your way to realising the phenomenal market opportunity that social-media presents, here are some advantages of social media and why it should be used to market your business.

1. Increased Brand Awareness, Authority and Trust

In its ability to target, reach and engage with a broader audience social media is the most cost-efficient digital marketing methods there is. In fact, whether experts or not, 91% of marketers claim their social marketing efforts have greatly increased their exposure. By giving consumers a point of contact with explanatory content about your business, social media presence can foster consumer brand-awareness, trust and facilitate positive and personalised interactions that humanise your company and increase customer satisfaction.

2. More Inbound Traffic/Higher Conversion Rates

Without social media marketing, your inbound traffic is limited to customers who look for you. This limit also means your feedback only concerns people already engaging with your brand, making it harder to reach beyond your current pool of customers. As local businesses like to support and leverage the contacts of one another, social media can drive new people to your websites just through participation online. The more visibility your company has through having an online presence across platforms with different user demographics, the more opportunities it has for conversion.

3.Flexibility in marketing styles

Consumers want marketing messages communicated to them in the most organic way possible. No-one is saying social media can’t be used to push content for a more sales-forward, paid marketing approach. But, if marketers properly educate themselves on how social media works, they can also engage in more natural marketing tactics that can, over time, increase engagement and cultivate high-value brand equity.

4. It’s budget can be tailored

When a business decides to utilise it’s paid promotion tactics it is also the decision of the business owner as to how much they would like to invest. This high amount of choice and autonomy allows business owners to experiment with what works best for them at a relatively low cost and commitment. This flexibility is such an advantage as business owners are able to receive a greater return on investment and retain the bigger budget for other marketing expenses.

5. Gain Marketplace Insights

What better way to gain insight into your target audience than directly engaging with them. By monitoring consumer activity on your and others profiles, social media can act as a complementary research tool that will enrich your understanding of them. This research aspect of social media is not just something that needs to be conducted by the naked eye. Social media recognises the business-owner portion of its users and provides multiple tools and options to collect analytics about their audiences. This ability to gain a greater understanding of consumers and what they respond to also maximises return on investment.

Social networks are a substantial part of every marketing strategy but are severely misunderstood. Maximise market potential and utilise social media as the superpower everyone knows it to be.

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The importance of creative thinking in marketing

The importance of creative thinking in marketing

The impact new technologies have on the market is growing progressively hard to ignore. An oversaturated and digital market has struck fear into the hearts of business owners trying to sell and, marketers have become their hired guns.

But, marketing tactics are everywhere too. How can some companies, even with marketers, win the war against a sea of others armed?

The answer is a marketer’s greatest superpower, Creativity.

What is ‘creativity’

Creativity is simply creating new ideas or solving problems originally. A way of making unique connections between seeming dissimilar, but relevant ideas, to create new opportunities.

The importance of creativity in general

Creativity is one of the most in-demand skills in the world; an important skill all business professionals should master.

A common misconception of creativity includes the idea creativity means artistry. But, this is misdirected. While an artist or a poet, even a musician, can exercise original thinking in their field of work, so can a salesperson, a mathematician, or a software engineer. Successful mathematicians don’t just crunch numbers, they create better formulas. Wizz computer programmers don’t just write code, they dream up new software!

True success will not be found within the boundaries of what is known.

The importance of creativity in marketing

Although their craft is already creative, marketers should also be testing the limits of their field. But so easily are businesses and their marketeer’s becoming consumed with a fear of being lost in a crowd of consumer advertisements that, they do exactly that. They use market research and advertising to disappear within a crowd of like-products.

When investing money into the creation of a marketing plan, do not fall for the ‘safeness’ of following ideas which have ‘worked before’. Do not use market research and other companies as a basis for your company’s presentation to the public, but use them as your point of reference and to improve on past ideas.

In fact, you don’t even need to learn from past ideas in the same field as marketing. For example, did you know the first roll-on deodorant was a spin-off of the idea of a ballpoint pen?

‘Muskateers’ not Marketeers

In the spirit of creativity, creatives should be using old ideas in new and re-imagined ways. By personality and profession, they should strive to identify new consumer needs and how to meet them in ways more creative than others to survive.

In fact, not only do studies suggest that an increase in creative expression increases overall wellbeing but the more creativity a company employs in its marketing tactics, the higher it’s brand visibility.

The creative marketer’s formula

Whether companies like it or not technology has increased the pool of online competition and, the ability to be noticed has become slimmer than the photoshopped models.

However, there is hope if you use creativity. No matter what field you are in, there are always limits to be tested and reset. So, to succeed in an oversaturated environment, the formula is simple:

  1. Stop settling for usual strategies. Push beyond them.
  2. Observe, but move away from the crowd by thinking creatively for your business and,
  3. Cut through the clutter in a way inspiring of transformative new ideas.

If someone follows this procedure correctly the answer should be the same. That, for a hired market gun, there is no better ammunition than creativity.

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How you can make your advertising more effective by stimulating senses

How you can make your advertising more effective by stimulating senses

Have you ever walked out of a store, not entirely sure why you just purchased something?

None of us should be a stranger to the confusing aftermath of an impulse buy like this. In fact, it’s more likely that looking around your home, you could explain why you don’t need some of the things you own better than why you purchased them.

One may have even gone as far as to think that, at that moment, they were out of their mind. The funny thing is that this wouldn’t be far from the truth. Stimulation of senses or, an appeal to your unconscious mind is often driving your behaviour as a consumer.

Sensory Marketing

Gone are the days where marketing tactics rely on concrete product factors to attract consumers. By relating to people in a far more personal way, sensory marketing utilises stimuli to activate senses and encourage them to act according to emotional impulses, to buy a product. Not because of what it is but, because of the way it makes them feel. Regardless of whether it is more expensive.

It is for the same reason human-like personalities are created in brands; to create brand loyalty through the good thoughts and feelings encouraged by a brand’s image.

Senses stimulate emotions

People are more likely to choose a product over another on the basis of a stimulating of senses. Such is why Millenials still prefer physical books over their digital version because of the emotional attachment that comes with owning, holding and using a physical thing. Like using a particular brand can make consumers feel positive and as though they belong to a part of a larger group, the sound, smell and tactile experience of a book, stimulates a sense of fondness, self and belonging in users.

Senses stimulate memory

People also remember more when they use a combination of their senses. 30-40% of people are tactile, meaning they will process, register and remember things better when they are touching them. But the benefits far outweigh an increased ability to remember. By being able to physically touch your advertisement, they will build a sense of trust with your brand – unparalleled by any other medium.

So how can you connect with your prospects physically?

The reason print outperforms so many other mediums with its ability to convert customers is it allows for boundless creativity and arousal of feeling – and the stimulation of tactile senses.

If your goal is to build trust, increased conversion rates and quicker sales, print advertising needs to be part of your arsenal.