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Steve Lister
Steve Lister 12 February 2020

Inside Knowledge – Episode 3: How to be profitably green in retail

How to get your retail business to be both profitable and sustainable

Steve Lister
Steve Lister 12 February 2020

How to get your retail business to be both profitable and sustainable

If we’re speaking your language, let’s kick off a project now!

Here’s the transcript…

Two weeks ago our environmentalist future King flew into Davos to shake Greta Thunberg’s hand. This week he flew 125 miles to give a speech to climate scientists on aircraft emissions. We've even got budget airlines preaching to us about being CO2 conscious whilst trying to sell us more low-cost flights.  

It’s not easy being green. And it’s royally easy to be a hypocrite.

So how can retailers genuinely nail a green transformation? 


1. Shift procurement’s focus from just cost, to cost and sustainability.

You and I always like to buy something new. It’s so often the basis of successful marketing. But by ensuring that marketing, print, POS, packagings, signage and in-store installations only use certified recycled, recyclable or compostable materials, will marketers have an angle to leverage the green economy.

So why are organisations that prioritise sustainability surpassing their peers and growing at record rates? It's because consumers believe in the sustainable cause. 


2. Recycling print and POS materials is great, but technology reduces volumes and stops the need to recycle wasteful print productions. 

Retail marketing is expensive. So, it’s got to work. We’re helping clients to weed out ineffective designs for marketing communications by using smart camera technology to prove in-store designs before they even roll out. This leading-edge approach makes stores more effective, more attractive and more sustainable.

Getting the right marketing collateral into retailers can also be very wasteful. We’re seeing the adoption of much smarter Digital Marketing Asset Management, ordering and reporting systems. By going beyond simply getting localised assets rapidly into stores, these systems allow central marketing teams to monitor collateral uptake and order levels whilst controlling the supply chain.


3. Of course, nothing happens without top-level leadership

Unilever have a globally recognised ‘Sustainable Living Plan’ which is a blueprint to achieve growth whilst delivering on a global plan. 

But not every leadership team has got with the green agenda. So I leave you with this persuasive piece from the United Nations and Acccenture.

Thank you for watching, until next time, goodbye.


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