Corporate responsibility and business sustainability are hot topics in the business world because of the benefit they can bring to a business's bottom line, as well as the value to the planet. Using events to showcase your business's sustainability efforts may have a very positive effect on customer relations and positive press.
Here's what you need to know about creating and using events to showcase your business's dedication to sustainability.
Business Sustainability Basics
The first step in leveraging events to showcase business sustainability is to understand the concept on a basic level. Brand plays an essential role in the success of your business, and sustainability is one of the most powerful faces of your brand since it impacts everything from your supply chain practices to the impact your business has on your local community.
Fortune Magazine shares how businesses should approach sustainability within the organization, as well as within any event. Fortune even suggests that sustainability is "core" to any business.
"It is important to define targets that are both specific and achievable; it’s better to say 'Eliminate X million pounds of packaging,' than the vague 'Reduce the footprint of our packaging.' As of August 2014, though, a McKinsey analysis found that only one in five companies in the S&P 500 had explicit, long-term sustainability goals, even though more than a third (36 percent) said sustainability was a top-three priority."
Why are Events a Powerful Option for Sustainability Visibility?
Commercial audiovisual industry association InfoComm International offers an outstanding explanation of why events can help showcase your business's sustainability (their advice is appropriate for virtually any business in any industry):
"Events are unique and powerful customer experiences. As a result, event organizers are increasingly seeking to create events that showcase their brand and organizational values around corporate responsibility. Within the meeting and event industry, these are often referred to as green meetings or sustainable events."
Not only can your business utilize a local event to publicize the green-friendly nature of your company, but you can also increase the sustainable reputation of your business by ensuring every vendor used a partner employed at the event operates in a sustainable manner.
Is a Green Event or Sustainable Meeting Difficult to Arrange?
The concept of designing a green event isn't particularly well-known throughout the business world, but there are a significant number of different event needs that may be designed in a sustainable manner. It's not just the recycled totes that attendees might receive at the conclusion of the event.
You'll want to discuss issues of sustainability with each of the following vendors:
- Catering & Food
- Hotel site or event venue
- Materials vendors or suppliers
- Transportation providers
For example, you might need to arrange a shuttle bus for your participants to travel from the parking area to the venue. Choosing a transportation company that uses green vehicles that are powered by electricity is a great way to reduce the amount of energy required to host the event.
Promoting Your Business's Sustainable Efforts
One of the major reasons a business will host or participate in an event is the publicity, brand enhancement, and marketing value of the occasion. Corporate responsibility often takes the form of sponsoring local events that benefit customers, and an event that benefits the local community in a sustainable and eco-friendly manner is exceptionally valuable to any business, large or small.
A report on sustainable events put together by a branch of the United Nations in Africa describes some of the sustainable practices you can use for your event that you can also use to market your business as a sustainable organization during the event and its advertising.
- Encouragement of healthy living through locally sourced food
- Responsible sources used for physical goods used at the event
- An event that's accessible to all individuals, no matter their physical abilities
- Minimal impact on the environment, negative or otherwise
The report describes the balance an organization must meet in designing and promoting an environmentally responsible event. Not only must the event meet environmental responsibilities, but it must also consider sustainability regarding the economic impact and social impact of the event.
Choose Packaging and Custom Bags for Your Event with Howard Packaging
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