Do you need to enhance the marketing strategy for your green products? Grab a copy of Greener Products by Al Iannuzzi, senior director of Environment, Health, Safety & Sustainability (EHS&S) at Johnson & Johnson for some tips and inspiration. The book draws upon numerous case studies as well as the author’s personal experience from leading sustainable marketing strategies for a worldwide brand.
In this second edition (the original was published in 2011), take a look at a wide range of topics that influence marketing strategy, enabling readers to broaden their knowledge of end-to-end green product development and delve deeper into the aspects most relevant to them.
In a recent review, Anna Clark, president of Earth People, noted that the new edition keeps up with evolution in the field — a valuable element for decision makers who may struggle to stay in the know when it comes to trends in such an emerging discipline.
In this edition, Ianuzzi highlights five traits that lead he has found lead to successful green marketing:
• Weaving green products into the business strategy
• Understanding the customers’ goals and desires and working to align the products to meet these needs
• Utilizing third-party certifications to communicate the green characteristics of the products via profiles and product labels.
• Being transparent about your product and supporting all claims made about the product via your marketing efforts.
• Maintain a focus on sustainable branding as a way to enhancement the quality of the brand (ie highlight that yours is a great product and it has sustainable qualities).
While some companies may talk a lot about sustainability they are not actually maintaining an active presence when it comes to their sustainable product line or their efforts to create new and innovative products. Iannuzzi focuses on the efforts of GE during the past 12 years and finds that “GE’s sustainability strategy is integrated: it’s a source of innovation, a pathway to operational efficiency, a reflection of core values and a driver of growth. “
During this time, GE has been committed to Ecomagination, a business strategy to deliver clean technology solutions that drive positive economic and environmental outcomes for their customers and the world. For GE, consistently placing sustainability communication strategy on par with greener product development allows Iannuzzi to explore how the two work in tandem to achieve maximum return on investment.
"What good is a greener product if no one knows about it?" he said in an interview. "The appropriate communication of the greener attributes of your product is just as important as having an improved product."
In her review, Clark highlights the importance of the product development chapters in the book tracing the steps that GE and dozens of other companies took toward integrating greener products into their portfolios. The case studies examine these steps both in terms of product development and marketing, providing readers with lessons that they can immediately leverage without incurring the costs and taking on the risks of green product pioneers.
Clark also notes that Iannuzzi’s “scientifically informed, evidence-based, field-tested guidance for developing cleaner, safer, healthier and more responsible products — and by extension, healthier supply chains — can help any company emerge as an industry leader.” Remember, courage (and success) comes more easily when you have the evidence that can help you build support within your organization as well as the ability to establish a roadmap to achieve results.