• Birgit Karus

What is sustainable marketing and can it even exist?

Is there a sustainable way for marketing and is there awareness about the implementation of sustainable tactics among marketing agencies? Working everyday with different marketing campaigns has made me think, how we can be more sustainable and make a positive impact ourselves with our everyday work.

First, let’s be clear about what is sustainable marketing.

Sustainable marketing, in general, reflects in doing more with less and the principles are very similar to going green movement, but just modified for the business world.

Value organic network

The organic network helps you to reach out to your potential customers without spending money. Meaning marketing shouldn’t be driven only in quick sales in order to be sustainable. Focus on content marketing and lead generation, not only specific discount codes or other conversion tracking methods. Build up your social media following and keep your organic reach up by posting engaging content on regular bases. Also, do not forget to blog to increase your website traffic and be sure your SEO is good.

Understand, where you can save money

Use cost-saving methods like barter deals or make mutually beneficial collaborations with like-minded brands and network channels. Be sure you have outlined those and put them in good use.

A long-term strategy is sustainable. One-time marketing campaigns usually are not if you have no follow-up activities.

Plan a long-term strategy. Short-term, one-time campaigns are nice and bring fast results, but is it wise to spend your full-year marketing budget on a one-time campaign, that last for three weeks?

The answer is NO, because you need to keep your social media accounts, website, stores active with smaller promotional/brand awareness activities in between those big one-time campaigns. Otherwise people will forget you and go to your competitor, who is more in the picture. As this article is written shortly after Black Friday, then I’d like to make you think for a moment, what are your follow-up activities after this huge sales campaign?

You should always plan to have some budget for every month in order to engage your existing customer base and keep going with the general brand awareness activities. Otherwise, short-term campaign results mean nothing and I promise, they will forget you. Sustainability is in long-term continuous marketing activities that help you to drive organic traffic.

Your product value proposition must be sustainable

Your product itself should be sustainable. Meaning it should satisfy customer needs and significantly improve the social and environmental performance along the whole life cycle of the product.

This doesn’t mean in terms of business, that it needs to be ecological. It means that your product must make your customer’s life better. This is what you need to understand and communicate with your potential customers. People do not need the stuff you sell, they need some nice memories, to be healthy or happy, etc.

When the company fails to explain, how they improve the life of its customers, then the business is not sustainable and it will always be a niche thing that is hard and costly to market. Sooner or later this will end with the death of the company.

Digital marketing footprint

The digital footprint of the company is important, especially in marketing. Be smart, when outlining your digital marketing strategy. There is no point to scream everywhere to everyone, that you’re selling your stuff. Most of those people do not really care.

Create less noise in unnecessary places and use well-targeted ads with clear A/B tested effective messaging. Understand why you do those things. There must be a reason, always.

Facebook policy goes towards sustainable digital marketing in 2020

Facebook has already limited organic reach of companies and content, which is not engaging for audiences.

Now Facebook makes new policy for ads. Starting in 2020 the amount of Facebook ads campaigns will be limited. This means you can only let a certain amount of ads run simultaneously. Hopefully, this makes advertisers think more about the quality of the ads and produce less noise.


Be sustainable and green in the ways you think about your marketing activities. Do not create so much marketing waste and focus only short-term vision. We’d like to cooperate with you and see your business growing after 10 years, too. As a wise man once told me, that there is no better investment in your future, than your own business. Make wise choices!

In case you’re thinking about improving your marketing strategy towards a more sustainable solution, then please feel free to contact us

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