Ad Age had a post this morning that reminded me of the danger in trying to jump on the sustainability band wagon without any real plan or intention. ‘Greenwashing’ is the term given to those who tout their environmental concerns and actions but who aren’t really doing anything genuine.
Sometimes greenwashing can be done unintentionally, but it must be avoided at all costs because it can be incredibly damaging to your company and your brand if you get caught not doing the things you say you are (or, perhaps worse yet, doing things half-heartedly while exploiting your “concern” in the PR arena).
Especially in a competitive market like print, it’s easy to get swept up with the excitement surrounding a popular cause and find yourself promising things you aren’t doing. I’m sure you’ve seen your local competition starting to promise things–have you seen anyone blatantly greenwashing? (no names of course, but I’d be interested to hear if you know of certain promises that are easy to make and easy to hide their absence…).