Author: Beyza Güneş
Date of Publication: 15/09/2022
Nowadays, 73% of consumers globally are looking for items that enable them to reduce their carbon footprints, according to a Nielsen survey.
Due to the climate crisis, numerous recent cases have begun to occur. The fires that erupted in different locations worldwide rank among the most significant of these occurrences. Also, we frequently hear about potential food supply crises brought on by soil infertility, heat-related deaths, and extreme weather changes. All of these factors are leading to an increase in the number of individuals who wish to use eco-friendly products.
Therefore, this is a huge benefit for environmentally responsible businesses. As the competition increases between companies, many of them want to take advantage of the environmental consciousness of the people. As a result, ongoing sustainable campaigns are more common. Have you ever considered whether or not the businesses that promote sustainability as a marketing strategy are actually sustainable? When we reflect on this question, the phrase "greenwashing" comes to mind.
In the latter half of the 20th century, a hotel encouraged repeat towel usage from its guests to cut costs. One of the employees understood that the corporation had no interest in environmental issues and sustainability. Yet financial concerns were the main focus of the marketing strategy. Thus, the phrase "greenwashing" has been used to describe the scenario.
Types of Greenwashing
Greenwashing can take many forms, and we sometimes have trouble understanding it. Let’s look at some ways of doing greenwashing:
● focus only on the environmental features of the product. Not all its features of it are marketed
● mention that products are recyclable when they are not
● put wrong information on labels
Greenwashing Examples from Different Brands
Unfortunately, a lot of the brands we are used to hearing about employ the greenwashing technique. Let's now examine these brands and the greenwashing type they engage in.
● McDonald's attempted to give its brand a more green aesthetic by switching the red out for green in its emblem.
● Another well-known international brand, H&M, has introduced a scorecard system. This shows the environmental impact of the products it sells. Although fast fashion companies are taking a positive step, it turns out that these scorecards don’t accurately reflect the situation. The brand later removed the scorecards.
● Ryanair has been promoting itself as the airline with the lowest CO2 emissions through a recent advertising campaign. After the advertising standards industry determined that the customer had been misled by the advertisement, the ad was banned.