Green Business Bureau Blog
How to Market Your Green Business Effectively
One posing problem for green manufacturers is how to maximize their green efforts not only in terms of environmental cause but also on how to turn green business into improved sales. Greenwashers or those who intentionally claim to employ green practices and products are very rampant nowadays as more and more consumers are becoming aware of the harmful environmental effects of the product or service that they afford.
These greenwashers are well equipped to successfully market their products. While you, probably on the other hand is wondering why your competitors seem to sell a great deal more when you know for a fact that their claims are close to being a hoax.
It is a fact that consumers are becoming eco-conscious these days. But they will probably at most read the green label or whatever phrase or statements that states green product claim. It is unlikely to see a customer who will bother to attest whether claims are true or misleading.
To help boost your business in line with the growing demand for eco-friendly products and services, green marketing should be a part of your plans or green programs. As you know, Internet marketing has become a trend among business owners and promoters. And the results prove to benefiting for their businesses. Take for example the likes of Toyota and Starbucks. These are just a few of considered large and popular companies that have successfully used Internet marketing to reach green consumers.
But this is not to say that only large companies can manage to reach vast market through the Internet. Orange Glo and Green Mountain Coffee Roasters are among those who have gone extra miles to market their green product.
Green may be an “in” concept but it does not automatically ensure that your product will be easily sold. Marketing will play a critical role in your green product development. There are still a lot of businesses and not-for-profits organizations that have little to no knowledge and capability to use the Internet to market directly to target clients.
Here are a few tips to help your green business reach your target green conscious consumers.
1. Use search engines capability. You can place ads on popular search engines such as Google and Yahoo! You can make use of Google Adwords or Yahoo Search Marketing. By carefully choosing keywords that match your product or service with high ranking green keyword search, you will definitely reach a vast number of prospective customers. The benefit of marketing in these search engines is that you will only need to pay when someone clicks your advertisement. A research also indicates that green clients uses the Internet more often to search for green products and/or services. You or your staff will have to research the best keywords that will generate the right clients upon typing in search boxes. You would not want to choose keywords that are not usually searched by Internet users. It will pay to learn the details about Internet marketing process so that your business can maximize sales potential.
2. Narrow down your Internet marketing strategy. There are a lot of websites that you can choose from to advertise your product. However, the rule of marketing indicates that you should always identify your target market before you launch any marketing approach. Conduct an extensive research to find out the type of consumers that usually patronize your product type. Look for green Web portals for both B2B and B2C audiences. Here is a simple definition of these concepts taken from www.askstrategic.com:
“B2B or Business to Business are portals that allow businesses to deal directly with their distributors and suppliers online which allows electronic transfer of orders, invoicing and even payments. B2C or Business to Customers are intermediary portals to link customers to suppliers. Some of the major ones are eBay, Yell and ZDNet.
Find out which websites and email newsletters have the most number of clients that falls under your target category. There are a lot of green web portals that offers B2B and B2C to clients involved in green businesses as well as green customers. These portals usually reach thousands of clients every day.
3. Work on your email list. Avoid spam as much as possible. Before you offer any product, make sure to build relationship with potential clients first. Make your messages personal and credible as possible. Provide information about green benefits, green practices and green products among others.
Email is an effective way to make sales. Include a squeeze page on your website so that clients will provide their personal information particularly email addresses in exchange of valuable information that you offer. These offers may come in the forms of newsletters, brochure etc. This way, you create your own email list. Offer them information that they cannot refuse. Once you have built a strong relationship with them, you can promote the benefits of your product as if you sell to them on a one on one basis and they will most likely buy from you than someone else.
5. Create an after sales marketing strategy. Satisfied clients are more than willing to recommend product to others. As you know, the best selling tool is still word of mouth. A simple email with “is there anything I can help you with” that you send a week after sales will surely make your customers feel important.
No matter how productive or environmentally friendly your product or service may be, it will not be sellable unless you promote your business effectively. A well thought out marketing strategy is sure to create an impact to clients. Pilot a target client base to at least 50-100 persons before you launch your sales campaign in the worldwide web. Lastly, make sure to state facts and not exaggerate inputs to clients. You may sell a good number of units at the startup but it will definitely dwindle down as soon as clients find out about your misleading information.
Happy green selling!