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Posts Tagged ‘go green’

How Environmentalists Act Like the Tea Party At Times

July 30th, 2011 No comments

Austin debating whether they should chop down pecan tree

Austin, Texas:  As the government faces an impasse over the debt ceiling, I am struck how similar this debate about the econmy is similar to certain situations that environmentalist face.

It’s about seeing the forest for the trees- no pun intended.

The Tea Party are so dogmatic about taxes and government spending that they don’t realize that a lowering of the credit rating of the U.S. government is like a tax hike– as interest rates will surely rise.  If they were to think the situation through, they would realize that getting 75% of what they want is better than getting 100% of  bad deal.

Same holds true for some environmental battles.

I have written about the excoriation of green companies that make claims that may overreach– rather than spending their times fighting against companies that are polluting our water, air and land. Both need addressing, but one should definitely take priority over the other for attention.

A new issue has developed in my hometown of Austin, Texas, where developers are planning to cut down a 70-year old, 57-foot pecan tree to clear way for a 400-foot office/residential tower.

On the surface, you can understand the environmentalists complaint about chopping down a giant tree.

On the other hand, environmentalists are preaching the virtues of city density, where people live, work and shop within a small area to reduce the need for driving and to improve air quality.

Even Roy Whaley, the vice chairman of the Austin chapter of the Sierra Club, has mixed feelings when he says, “We do want to densify downtown and appropriate areas and put as many people downtown as possible, but we can’t stand to walk downtown if we don’t have trees to shade us.”

I think that people need to weigh each case on its individual merits and not be so quick to decide on an outcome–without doing some analysis.

Our country would be a lot better shape if people understood that the word is not black and white–but that most matters are in the grey area.

Let’s hope level-minded individuals can prevail in both issues–the economy and the environmnet.

Playing “gotcha” is fun for kids.  But aren’t there any adults left in the house?
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Robert Piller, President of Eco Marketing Solutions, has over 25 years of experience in running and implementing green marketing campaigns and is a leader in the recycled promotional products industry, including offering one of the largest selections of reusable and organic tote bags, recycled and biodegradable water bottles, recycled pens and pencils in the country.

His company’s website, EcoMarketingSolutions.com, features over 25,000 eco-friendly promotional items in all price ranges, for any business or organization interested in going green. The site’s handy search tool helps you easily find biodegradable, organic and recycled imprinted promotional items in your price range and time frame.

You can also reach him by email (robert (at) ecomarketingsolutions.com) or comment on his blog postings at GreenSpotBlog.com or below at his Twitter link.

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12 Simple Ideas To Cut Your Organization’s Carbon Footprint In Half Using Small Steps

July 29th, 2011 No comments

12 steps to double your companies' energy efficiency

Pain-Free Ways to Cut Your Companies’ Energy Consumption

Austin, Texas: The automotive industry is being required to double their fuel economy standards to 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025 in an effort to reduce global warming and cut oil consumption.

That’s right–double what today’s standards are in 14 years.

Or, if you want to break it down, that’s about 7% more efficient per year over that time frame.

Breaking a long-term goal into smaller targets actually is a much more reasonable way to meet your goals.

7% per year.

Can your organization reduce its fuel consumption and carbon footprint by 7% per year?

Here are twelve simple ideas to cut your fuel consumption and becoming a greener organization.

  1. Thermostat adjustments.
  2. More efficient lighting.
  3. Newer HVAC equipment.
  4. Solar panels.
  5. Local buying.
  6. Bicycle parking spots.
  7. Double-sided printing mandates.
  8. Re-Think business travel.
  9. Use a green energy provider.
  10. Increase tele-conferencing.
  11. Enforce sleep-mode computer settings.
  12. Unplug all chargers at night.

7% per year.

Any organization can do it.

What steps will you be taking to cut your energy usage by 7% each year?

I’d love to hear about your list.

Let’s make Every Day Earth Day!

Ask Us Your Green Marketing Questions Anytime at  Facebook.com/ecomarketingsolutions and join the conversation.
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Robert Piller, President of Eco Marketing Solutions, has over 25 years of experience in running and implementing green marketing campaigns and is a leader in the recycled promotional products industry, including offering one of the largest selections of reusable and organic tote bags, recycled and biodegradable water bottles, recycled pens and pencils in the country.

His company’s website, EcoMarketingSolutions.com, features over 25,000 eco-friendly promotional items in all price ranges, for any business or organization interested in going green. The site’s handy search tool helps you easily find biodegradable, organic and recycled imprinted promotional items in your price range and time frame.

You can also reach him by email (robert (at) ecomarketingsolutions.com) or comment on his blog postings at GreenSpotBlog.com or below at his Twitter link.

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Green Marketing Tip: Send Receipts by Email-Capture Contact Info

July 15th, 2011 No comments

save a tree-send cash register receipts by emailData Capture or Go Green Movement? Depends on the Retailer

Austin, Texas: Retailers, are you looking for an easy way to capture your customers’  email addresses and go green at the same time?

Well, many retailers are now offering to send cash register receipts by email--to prevent receipts from getting lost, and also for capturing customer data.

There can, of course, be hyperlinks to your Facebook page, twitter page, etc.

But please, if you are not a green company, do not use the excuse that you are doing this to “save the trees”.

Not only will customers roll their eyes, but you will only make it harder for legitimate green retailers to promote the green movement.

At the same time, be sure to offer a reusable tote instead of plastic bags.

You don’t want to be  a hypocrite.

Help make every day Earth Day.
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Robert Piller, President of Eco Marketing Solutions, has over 25 years of experience in running and implementing green marketing campaigns and is a leader in the recycled promotional products industry, including offering one of the largest selections of reusable and organic tote bags, recycled and biodegradable water bottles, recycled pens and pencils in the country.

His company’s website, EcoMarketingSolutions.com, features over 25,000 eco-friendly promotional items in all price ranges, for any business or organization interested in going green. The site’s handy search tool helps you easily find biodegradable, organic and recycled imprinted promotional items in your price range and time frame.

You can also reach him by email (robert (at) ecomarketingsolutions.com) or comment on his blog postings at GreenSpotBlog.com or below at his Twitter link.

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Should Government Offices be Mandated to Increase Their Green Purchasing Requirements?

June 29th, 2011 No comments

how can we increase government purchases of eco friendly productsAustin, Texas: While at the Keep Texas Beautiful conference last week, I sat through a seminar about Green Buying, which opened up to audience participation.

The most interesting cause for alarm was that most cities said that they would like to increase the percentage of green products that they purchase, but variety of reasons were given for why they have not, including:

  • price point too high
  • inconvenient
  • lack of alternate products or no known alternatives
  • established relationships with vendors

If these cities that are involved in the beautification of Texas are not buying green products, then who will?

If more governmental organizations and cities are required to purchase a higher percentage of green products, then more companies will start to provide these services and products.  Over time, these costs will drop as production increases.

But government offices should be mandated to increase their green product purchases to spur their growth and development.

There are amazing things that can be done these with recycled products, from the  use of used tires, roof shingles and glass in roadways to recycled plastic used to replace wood. Recycled paper, toner cartridges and other products can be used within government offices.

I think that a plus or minus 10% price differential should go to a green company in the first three years.  Then, that differential should drop to 7% in years 4 through 6, 5% in years 7 and 8, and 3% in years 9 and 10. After a decade of minor subsidies, then the price differential should no longer be required.

This will give companies ten years to boost their production and improve efficiencies.

Like other subsidies, they are needed for  a short period of time–but they need to expire  within a decade.

Ten years should be enough time to get our country on the right path to a reduced carbon footprint with products designed to conserve more energy and produced with more recycled materials.

Nobody likes gvernment regulations and subsidies, but a ten-year program that phases out over its lifetime should bea no-brainer.

What do you think?

Ask Us Your Green Marketing Questions Anytime at  Facebook.com/ecomarketingsolutions and join the conversation.

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Robert Piller, President of Eco Marketing Solutions, has over 25 years of experience in running and implementing green marketing campaigns and is a leader in the recycled promotional products industry, including offering one of the largest selections of reusable and organic tote bags, recycled and biodegradable water bottles, recycled pens and pencils in the country.

His company’s website, EcoMarketingSolutions.com, features over 25,000 eco-friendly promotional items in all price ranges, for any business or organization interested in going green. The site’s handy search tool helps you easily find biodegradable, organic and recycled imprinted promotional items in your price range and time frame.

You can also reach him by email (robert (at) ecomarketingsolutions.com) or comment on his blog postings at GreenSpotBlog.com or below at his Twitter link.

Follow ecomarketing on Twitter

Is it OK for a Corporate Advocacy Group to Promote a Go Green Agenda?

June 23rd, 2011 No comments

go green advertising campaignsI have been exhibiting at a Keep Texas Beautiful convention and the booth next to me is from an organization that is sponsored by the American Chemistry Council.

They are promoting a fun program designed to encourage businesses and cities to recycle plastic bags. The have a cute campaign and do a great deal of social media through their A Bag’s Life campaign.

However, their ultimate goal is to lobby to prevent bag ban legislation from coming to fruition.

Does the good they are doing in promoting the 3 R’s (reduce, reuse, recycle) outweigh their agenda?

Is it OK to get big business to finance recycling education? This might be akin to the Tobacco Master Settlement money that was taken from the cigarette companies to pay for anti-smoking ad campaigns.

Personally, I see no problem, as free education is better than no education.

What is your take on this? I’d love to hear from you.

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Robert Piller, President of Eco Marketing Solutions, has over 25 years of experience in running and implementing green marketing campaigns and is a leader in the recycled promotional products industry, including offering one of the largest selections of reusable and organic tote bags, recycled and biodegradable water bottles, recycled pens and pencils in the country.

His company’s website, EcoMarketingSolutions.com, features over 25,000 eco-friendly promotional items in all price ranges, for any business or organization interested in going green. The site’s handy search tool helps you easily find biodegradable, organic and recycled imprinted promotional items in your price range and time frame.

You can also reach him by email (robert (at) ecomarketingsolutions.com) or comment on his blog postings at GreenSpotBlog.com or below at his Twitter link. We’d love to hear your additions to this list.

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Are You Using Social Media to Promote Green Causes–Or Are You Just Promoting Your Product or Service?

June 14th, 2011 No comments

use your social media to promote green causesMany green companies spend most of their advertising and marketing budgets promoting their brand, but very few of them are spending a proportionate amount of effort on outreach.

With social media being free, are you making the most of this opportunity to promote green values and causes?

Your social media (including Twitter, Facebook,  and possibly LinkedIn) should be focused on promoting green issues that may be of concern to your clients and prospects.

Do not push product in this space.   This will not get Retweeted or Liked and it will annoy your audience.

Instead, this  effort should be geared to expanding your base and making your customers more aware of green topics, websites, causes, etc.

Spend your Social Media efforts promoting :

  • Local and National Green Events
  • Political and Legislative Issues Facing Voters
  • New Proposed Regulations/Policies Affecting the Environment
  • Ideas and Tips on Becoming More Green, Reducing One’s Carbon Footprint, etc.
  • Trade Shows and Fairs Relating to the Environment
  • Earth Day Ideas and Events

Become a resource to your clients and prospects … and your organization’s name will be remembered.

What are you plans to do more green outreach over the next 12 months?

I’d love to hear about it.

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Robert Piller, president of Eco Marketing Solutions, is experienced in green marketing campaigns and recycled promotional products.  He has worked to help plant over 25 million trees through his live tree seedling gift program over the past dozen years.  His company’s website, EcoMarketingSolutions.com, features over 25,000 eco-friendly promotional items in all price ranges, for any business or organization interested in going green. The site’s handy search tool helps you easily find biodegradable, organic and recycled imprinted promotional items in your price range and time frame.

You can also reach him by email (robert (at) ecomarketingsolutions.com) or comment on his blog postings at GreenSpotBlog.com or below at his Twitter link.

Follow ecomarketing on Twitter

Going Green Means Reducing Paper Usage By All Parties

May 5th, 2011 No comments

go green by reducing waste paperI will be exhibiting at a waste/recycling show next week– and I have been barraged by a steady stream of emails from the organization over the past few weeks–each with a note to print out their emails–as they are making “efforts to be environmentally conscious”.  However they require every exhibitor personnel to print out their form  (4 pages) before they can get their badges.

In fact the exact wording reads: ” This letter serves as your registration confirmation. To expedite on-site processing, please bring this confirmation with you to XYZExpo. Please note that in XYZExpo’s efforts to be environmentally conscious, exhibitor badges and special event tickets WILL NOT BE MAILED. Instead, everything will be available for pick-up on-site. Your Exhibitor badge(s) and special event tickets can be picked up at the “Exhibitor Already Registered” counters. Please note a confirmation has been sent to the email provided for each of your company’s exhibiting booth personnel so they can pick up their individual exhibitor badge. Please be sure to bring your email confirmation and photo ID on-site (just like when you check at the airport). We thank you in advance for your support in our efforts.” Note: In an effort to be reasonable, I protected the organization’s name, substituting XYZ for it’s real name.

If you are going green or acting in an “environmentally conscious” way – then don’t require 2500+ people to needlessly print out four pages of documentation that is poorly formatted.

I have been to some shows where you get a bar code and can scan a single piece of paper or your iPhone screen to get your badges.  This trade show organization had previously sent me an email with a bar code that I had already printed out– so to print out an additional 4 pages does not Read more…

Go Green: Put Your Catalog Online

April 18th, 2011 No comments

Green marketers should avoid print catalogsAs a green marketer, I have talked about the need to shift away from printed catalogs–at least in the quantities that you have been printing.

Think about the number of catalogs that you throw out at the end of each year — or still have stuck in the corner of your office or warehouse (in case it becomes an eBay classic).

There are a few simple ways to cut your catalog printing and I suggest using a variety of the following steps, as they are not mutually exclusive:

1) Put your catalog on line.  We have just uploaded our new catalog with page-flipping technology, so it reads as easily as a print catalog.

Click here to take a look at how we have jumped on this new technology,which is now offered by dozens of companies.  A page-flip online catalog is much easier than a PDF file to read.   Most will have zoom capabilities and an index, so it resembles the experience of print catalogs.

2) Put your catalog on CD or recycled or bamboo USB Flash Drives:   CD catalogs are antiquated (remember those from AOL for 30 day trials)..so I’d make the leap to USB flash drives, if you have the budget.  These can have your logo on them, and the drives can be in the form of a pen, key fob, custom shape, recycled materials, etc.   These will be keep your logo in front of your client–while having your catalog at your prospect’s or client’s fingers–literally.

3) Have your catalog accessed through the use of QR codes.  Use these scan-ready codes on your business cards, flyers, postcards, promotional products –everywhere. Some people even use their QR codes as their image on LinkedIn and Twitter for maximum reach.

4) Switch from catalogs to sell sheets, flyers, postcards,etc.  If you are exhibiting at a trade show, a simple flyer or two can be more effective–and prevent the great dumping of catalogs at the airport or at night when attendees are just too tired to carry their briefcase any longer.  For those that are more qualified, a full-print catalog may be acceptable at that time, or the USB flash drive would be best.

Remember, not everybody that stops by your booth is a qualified prospect.  Use your catalogs more wisely.

If you use direct mail, a series of postcard mailings can be more effective than one bulk catalog mailing. Those that still need a full print catalog will let you know…but will be few and far between

If your company is going green, show your prospects and your clients that you are doing your best to reduce your carbon footprint.  Switch to digital catalogs is a good first step.

Here’s to a greener tomorrow, today.

PS Let me know how your reduction in print catalogs has affected your sales and costs..and if the switch was worth it to your company.  I’d be interested to hear from you.
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Robert Piller, experienced in green marketing campaigns and recycled promotional products, has worked to help plant over 25 million trees through his live tree seedling gift program over the past dozen years. His company’s website, EcoMarketingSolutions.com, features over 25,000 eco-friendly promotional items in all price ranges, for any business or organization interested in going green. The site’s handy search tool helps you easily find biodegradable, organic and recycled imprinted promotional items in your price range and time frame.

You can also reach him by email (robert (at) ecomarketingsolutions.com) or comment on his blog postings at GreenSpotBlog.com or below at his Twitter link.


Follow ecomarketing on Twitter

This Earth Day, Commit to Making Green Changes for the Next 12 Months

April 14th, 2011 1 comment

Earth Day celebrations need to encourage behavior modificationsEarth Day is coming…and before you know it, there will be nothing left but a memory.

The real shame of Earth Day is that so many organizations and companies look it at as an isolated,  one day, feel good event–like a birthday, or New Year’s Eve.

Resolutions are made on New Year’s Eve, most of which are broken within a week.  I know that for a fact, as my birthday is January 6th and I am usually trying to re-affirm and renew my broken pledges from the week before.

Earth Day is very similar to New Year’s in broken pledges and stalled resolutions?

I have clients that I only hear from in the Spring when they prepare for their Earth Day events. It is always nice to hear from them, and I appreciate their business…but I wonder how much impact they, and others like them, are truly making with a single day GREEN  focus.

Earth Day should be about behavior modification.  Companies should encourage their employees and their customers, as well as the general public, to take a pledge to make changes in reducing their carbon footprint.

No Earth Day event or outreach program should pass without pledge cards being handed out which are designed to encourage specific steps to take in cutting energy use, changed buying behaviors and other definitive ways to cut one’s carbon footprint.

Old habits and behaviors take time to change…and businesses, churches, and other organizations need to hold green meetings on a regular basis in order to keep people following their green resolutions.

Perhaps an AA for people who want to be more environmentally friendly and socially aware.

Wouldn’t it be nice if every organization who says that they are “going green” holds weekly or monthly green meetings with employees (and the general public) helping people to better understand their individual impact on the planet and how they can take steps to reduce energy consumption and waste.

Let’s not allow Earth Day to become a one day party or event.  Let’s make Earth Day the start of a year-long green movement  and campaign that really has impact.

Let’s Make Every Day Earth Day!

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Robert Piller, experienced in green marketing campaigns and recycled promotional products, has worked to help plant over 25 million trees through his live tree seedling gift program over the past dozen years. His company’s website, EcoMarketingSolutions.com, features over 25,000 eco-friendly promotional items in all price ranges, for any business or organization interested in going green. The site’s handy search tool helps you easily find biodegradable, organic and recycled imprinted promotional items in your price range and time frame.

You can also reach him by email (robert (at) ecomarketingsolutions.com) or comment on his blog postings at GreenSpotBlog.com or below at his Twitter link.


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Is There Really a Need for an International Green Chamber of Commerce?

March 25th, 2011 No comments

green certification and green seals of approvalsI just received a press release about an organization called  the EcoChamber, which claims to be “the global green chamber of commerce”.  They say that they have  “more than 1,100 global listings, 2,100 Twitter followers and 700 Facebook fans”, which is a nice start.

Their mission seems lofty and innocent enough as it is listed in the release: “Our mission is to help the growth of green businesses worldwide,” commented EcoChamber’s founder Tia Diaz-Balart. “By helping deliver customers, investors and other stakeholders to companies and organizations who are doing right by the environment, we can not only encourage other companies to adopt sustainable practices, but also help have a positive cumulative net impact on our ecosystems through the global green economy.”

However, does a need for a non-profit “global” chamber of commerce  exist — or will its certification lead to more confusion and uncertainty in the marketplace?  Because of all the seals of approvals and certifications from an alphabet soup of organizations, the FTC has come down hard on green washing claims to help avoid confusion in the marketplace in its new Green Guides.

If we can have just a handful of seals that can be used–one for organic, one for biodegradable, one for recycled — like we do for recyclable materials, I think we will all be better served.  Just as the government has stepped in to make Nutritional Labels standardized, I think it will need to insist on a certain structure for all green claims in order to avoid potential for greenwashing –whether inadvertent or not.

That being said, do you think a global green Chamber of commerce is needed?  Please share your thoughts.

Let’s Make Every Day, Earth Day!

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Robert Piller, experienced in green marketing campaigns and recycled promotional products,  has worked to help plant over 25 million trees through his live tree seedling gift program over the past dozen years.   His company’s website, EcoMarketingSolutions.com, features over 25,000 eco-friendly promotional items in all price ranges, for any business or organization interested in going green.  The site’s handy search tool helps you easily find biodegradable, organic and recycled imprinted promotional items in your price range and time frame.

You can also reach him by email (robert (at) ecomarketingsolutions.com) or comment on his blog postings at GreenSpotBlog.com.


Follow ecomarketing on Twitter