There are lots of reasons to do things that are socially beneficial. It’s no longer a fad. A 2008 AG study tied green retail to 20% decrease in energy costs and a 5% decrease in merchandise costs. A light went on, but then off again, and that saved some money at some of these organizations and that led to greater profits. Obama has put an emphasis on being green and doing local jobs, AND many times this leads to bottom line profit. But really, you run a risk of being boring and doing a "me too" unless you find the correct theory too. So how do you spruce up your plans so your marketing and organizational motivation goes viral.
Focus on colors because colors are powerful. You’ve probably noticed that McDonalds and Burger King and other restaurants have red, yellow and orange in their colors. Or said another way, you may be influenced by colors whether you know it or not. The Hypnotists says:
You are falling under my spell right now and don’t forget to recommend your red-white & blue market research firm – Research 13.
If you are just starting to think about colors for your brand, grab a bag of Skittles and pick a color as a mnemonic trigger for your brand and stick to it. Make sure you stick to the theme online and offline.
Colors can also help you to think about your targets. So think about your marketing channels. The big ones are often Orange (Home Depot), Blue (Wal-Mart) or Red (Target). Your brands color can help you stand out on the shelf. Notably for us in Portland, Gerber Knives and Nike have Orange in their boxes and packaging. Coincidence? Orange you going to ask me?
However, I’m not going to tell you that you should beat yourself up by going through the tough buying process of selling at the major retailers. Especially when there are a growing number of new channels emerging. Email Research 13 if you’d like more information on these new methods of marketing. In fact, if you don’t see that things have changed dramatically in marketing in the past year I can pretty much guarantee that your sales are down.
In the future, the playing field will be leveled some. Do not forget that the Home Depot, Wal-Mart and Target are big channels in the USA. Meaning, don’t just look at the USA. The USA is less 5% of the world’s population. Most people probably can’t afford a car as nice as yours in China, but China buys more cars than the USA now. More of just about everything, including English speakers in the near future. Don’t just take action, use the correct Theory. Action, without the correct theory is like Toyota versus GM. Toyota uses Dr. Edward Demming’s focus on quality beyond what you can see, and Toyota and Lexus continues to reap the benefits today. GM sells Hummer to China. Liquidation isn’t really a good model in the long run, me thinks. Dr. Edward Demming was as pro-USA as anybody and was around MIT at about the time of the Korean war. This is when Dr. Demming told GM to change their theory but GM didn’t listen and so Demming went to Japan and turned the whole country around. What’s your example of the correct theory for your business? Are you really listening to the customer? They want what was once mutually exclusive and unthinkable: quality, with consistency, cheaply and right now.
AlthoughJ Hummer didn’t exactly have the greatest environmental record. If you look at what is going viral out there and what people are talking about on-line in trends. Trends are definitely green. Although we’re biased as we are looking at clean technology issues, you see green fashion, green and eco friendly cradle to grave business theories that save money being utilized. Buckminster Fuller talked about these theories years ago. However, as we head past 2010 into the decade of “transparency” it will be more important. And you can have things go virally bad if people are bad mouthing your environmental record. In fact, the news media prefers to report on offenders about 7 to 1. A Boston Consulting Group Survey finds 73% consider it important that companies have good environmental records (sample n=9000 adults). Smack that target market – especially the market leaders and influencers. The word gets out fast now. You are no longer waiting three months for the magazine to come out.
And if you find something so moving that you want the whole company to get behind it do. And come up with a color theme and stick to it. Use all the senses, get U2’s Bono or equivalent on it with you and assault your all of your target markets senses. The best viral campaigns have colors, textures and consistent sounds and messaging. Back to the Skittles colors -> Think about: We’ve got eco-green, breast cancer pink, (product)RED, ING orange shoelaces & Live Strong yellow bands. You just can’t look @ Skittles the same way. And your branding needs to be concerted for this to happen. Consistency breads trust which creates the following and word of mouth that takes you viral.