A campaign where brand, influencer and consumer explore sustainability together, is a campaign that increases brand trust and protects the planet. Here’s your guide to making it work.
If we try to imagine how a ‘sustainable’ fashion industry might look, there’s no scenario that can cope with our current, rate of consumption. The Global Fashion Agenda predicts that by 2030 global apparel consumption will rise by 63%. The main issue is that we’re running out of resources. Whether we prioritise what’s best for profits or the planet, we need to evolve the way we buy clothes.
A shift towards sustainability
Luckily a positive shift has begun, with supply chains improving and various brands emerging as leaders in sustainable production. Shopping habits however remain largely unchanged. So, it’s up to brands and influencers to lead the charge towards sustainable consumption. Those that emerge as leaders, if done authentically, will gain respect, trust and loyalty, whilst doing right by the planet too.
Influencers are your key to success
Point of sale isn’t the right time to change customer behaviour. Sustainability credentials are largely ignored at this point yet most brands’ efforts to encourage eco-conscious choices happen at checkout. Shifting to influencer collaborations could well be a game-changer. Specifically, content that educates, normalises, and helps your audience shop in a way aligned to their values
The feed has become the perfect place to start honest conversations about sustainability, and spark new shopping journeys. Influencers can expertly bridge that gap between brand and audience, adding power to sustainability efforts through humanity and unedited authenticity.
Authenticity is paramount
According to Investopedia, ‘greenwashing’ is “the process of conveying a false impression or providing misleading information about how a company’s products are more environmentally sound.” In campaigns employed as greenwashing devices – or sustainable rebrands – nobody wins. Brands and influencers need to honestly disclose their sustainable (and other) vulnerabilities, in order to build trustworthy narratives and provoke real change.
Proving it works
Take our campaign with Office in collaboration with Nike, to celebrate the launch of Nike’s 2020 Vapormax at Office. We were onboarded to help educate and inspire audiences to make better choices. We partnered with sustainable style advocate Shaunie Brett (@shauniemaker), who has since gone on to become a sustainability consultant for brands and helped us put this article together.
Shaunie had just finished a shopping hiatus, so we positioned the shoe as a wardrobe staple that was worth the investment, and could be styled with pre-loved items. The Vapormax 2020 campaign was special because it was a big part of Nike’s ‘Move To Zero’ commitment – aka, the perfect example of a brand showing vulnerability, to move towards sustainability.
“Vulnerability is powerful, that means sharing where you actually are in your journey towards sustainability now.”
How to make it work
As you can see, vulnerability is powerful, that means sharing where you actually are in your journey towards sustainability now. Allowing the brand, influencer and consumer to explore sustainability together, will increase brand trust, improve the influencers’ engagement and drive sustainable consumption.
+ Choose an imperfect partner. Find creators who speak authentically, are ready to be vulnerable, who understand your mission and are truly ready to make more sustainable choices.
+ It’s not about your product; it’s about your purpose. Redefine what success means for this campaign. Education, honesty and valuable advice will boost longer-term metrics such as engagement, retention and brand perception.
+ Never claim you’re sustainable. In fact, explicitly state that you’re not. And from this place of honesty, expose the areas you’re trying to change.
+ Deliver instant value. Ensure your content is hopeful and uncomplicated. Provide useful takeaways. Map out an ideal onward journey that results in positive reinforcement, not necessarily through a sale.
+ Make it a conversation. Interact with your audience to understand what helps them, and what works. Use it as an opportunity to connect.
A conscious consumption campaign will deliver a threefold positive impact. Future-proofing brands. Giving the influencer a sense of purpose. And giving people and the planet a chance at long term well-being.
If you want to lead the shift to healthier shopping habits, explore your options with us at email@example.com.