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A global 2015 study from research group Nielsen found that younger groups prioritize sustainability as a shopping preference. When asked if they would pay more for products that were described as eco-friendly, or support brands that were environmentally responsible Generation Z (ages 18-24) responded affirmatively. According to the report, 72% of Gen Z is willing to pay more for goods and services that came from organizations that prioritized a positive environmental and social impact. These findings were reinforced by a 2018 report from GreenMatch, which created an online tool to measure the importance of sustainability among Gen Z customers.

How Can Marketers Sell Sustainability?

Communicating the message of environmental sustainability to consumers must begin in the marketing stage. Marketers should highlight each eco-friendly process used during a product’s lifecycle. For instance, a business that uses digital printing can highlight the benefits of aqueous inks, which produce less waste as a byproduct during printing. Marketers can also highlight digital printing’s ability to create short, customized runs, which reduces their carbon footprint with less waste byproduct.

Research shows that younger generations appreciate direct mail, however, focusing on more sustainable practices can increase its effectiveness further. For example, if organizations use only recycled paper to communicate with their audience and inform them of these efforts, Generation Z consumers will likely be more open to receiving additional mail-based customer communications.

An organization’s best bet is to directly state a sustainability objective whenever possible. If the cardboard used in a product’s packaging is made from recycled materials, this information should be highlighted with a label or certification. Verification of these practices should be handled by an independent and trusted third party. For example, consider the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), a non-profit, independent organization that maintains standards designed to enforce eco-friendly practices. By gaining endorsements from a neutral and well-known party, businesses can effectively show their consumers just how much they care for the environment.

Generation Z consumers are coming of age during a time when the environmental future of the planet is uncertain and highly publicized, so they are concerned about sustainability—and they want the brands they interact with to care about it too! Marketers can make their offerings more attractive to this age group by clearly demonstrating how their firms are practicing and prioritizing sustainability. As we move into the future, businesses can remain relevant among younger consumers by positioning themselves as responsible stewards that are truly concerned about maintaining a sustainable business space.

If your business is interested in stepping into the sustainable-oriented realm, please contact us at Tukaiz. We have years of experience in producing and working with recyclable materials and can help you and your organization shift into an environmentally friendly printing model.