As consumers, we have the power to shape the brands’ behaviours about sustainability. Whether you have realized this power by now or not, we have it and we should use it to build our own future.
In this article, I want to show you how we actually affect brands’ actions by sharing different examples from various sectors. Follow me to get more proactive, conscious and sustainable! Thanks to us, companies are trying to increase their brand sustainability.
Did you know that we eat microplastics at the size of a credit card every week? Well, you do now.
We created plastics to make our lives easy, but how often do we think of the damage we cause to the environment with our choices? They might be helpful for our daily lives; however, it is ruining our future.
One day, I was working from Starbucks and realized the sleeve on the cup saying:
This insulating sleeve is made from 60% post-consumer recycled fiber and uses approximately 45% less material than a second paper cup.
That inspired me to write this article and give a shout out to the sustainable brands that decide to take an action for our mother earth. Even if you are a person who usually goes with a second paper cup, you can change it today.
That shouldn’t mean that the best way is to use sleeves rather than second paper cups. But, this can be a good point to start. You know that you can always go to Starbucks or any other coffee shop with your own reusable mug.
I’m trying my best not to share disturbing pictures of sea otters with six pack rings around their neck or a bird trying to eat a gummy bear. You can see them on any other sustainability articles.
In this one, I aim to share the positive sustainability ads to inspire us! Of course, that doesn’t mean that we will ignore the facts.
Let’s start with the basics. A footprint is the effect that something has on the environment.
From what we eat to how we travel, we emit tons of greenhouse gas emissions per year. We should be aware of what we cause to the environment and find ways to make it up to them. Cutting carbon footprints is the first step that everyone can start taking today.
From all sectors, companies are trying to increase their brand sustainability by promising to reduce their footprints. And we see that it really affects the consumers’ behaviours. Now the customers check if their love brand is working on any social responsibility projects, and if they make any official announcements right after any phenomena around the world, etc. And if any brand catches our attention with their sustainability ads, we remember them when we need to choose between that brand and another one.
In this article, I have gathered the best sustainability ad campaigns by brands and digital agencies in the categories below:
- Food & Beverage
- IT & Technology
- Nonprofit organizations
- Digital Agencies
Best Automotive Sustainability Ad Campaigns by Brands
I will start with the least innocent industry for the environment; automotive. This is my personal opinion, of course, but it is based on the facts. Here is one of them:
We cannot turn a blind eye to how helpful cars are for our lives. But obviously, the car industry has still a long way to go. I don’t think it is very possible for us to live without cars. So, until all of the cars are lighter, smaller, and electrical, we can see their sustainability ads and actions below.
Land Rover | Reimagine Strategy
They have a target to be a net zero carbon brand by 2039. Here is their pledge.
Volvo | The Ultimate Safety Test
Here you can watch Volvo’s “pun intended” brand sustainability commercial:
Leather-Free Car Interiors
Testing on animals is another thing that people now want to check before buying a product by a brand. For the automotive industry, you can check the cars that use vegan leather here.
Best Fashion Sustainability Ad Campaigns by Brands
Did you know that the water footprint for a single white cotton t-shirt is 2.700 lt (713 gallons)?
I’m not going to say much more about this except asking you this, “Would you still buy that shirt if you see its water footprint on the price tag?”. I believe we would give it a second thought if we needed that shirt that much.
The majority of fashion brands are aware that they cannot get sustainable in one day. Because it is not that easy. Their supply chains, their prices, and maybe even their customers will be affected. But they are also aware that they cannot survive in the market with their current way of working. So you will see some of them only “vow” for not to get “really sustainable” in the coming 5-10 years.
I hope one day we will all be conscious consumers, and I know for sure that not all brands will love this. Anyways, let’s see what the most sustainable clothing brands are.
All H&M products are cruelty-free, meaning that they are not tested on animals. Moreover, they published their sustainability report in 2020.
They have recently shared their sustainability performance report. You can see the sustainabilty improvements they have made and how possible it is.
Here is Zara’s sustainability vow to be using 100% sustainable materials by 2025.
Best Cosmetics Sustainability Ad Campaigns by Brands
Lush is known for its environmentally sustainable projects. They are one of the leaders who have been trying to get brand sustainability possible. Here is their main policy:
Lunette & Organicup
According to research published by Stanford Magazine, in the United States alone, approximately 12 billion pads and 7 billion tampons are discarded each year.
But another future is possible. How? With the menstrual cups! They are cheaper, more environmentally sustainable and healthier. Even if you don’t feel ready to use menstrual cups, you can try reusable organic pads too. On Lunette’s YouTube channels, they answer the FAQs.
Did you know that you can recycle your razors with Gilette and TerraCycle? Check their website to find a location near you to recycle your Gilette razor.
Here is a lovely brand sustainability project by the cosmetics brand Body Shop. They’re gradually making their packaging 100% recyclable and they’re collecting empty packaging to recycle.
You can check out their brand sustainability campaigns here.
Kiehl’s | Future Made Better
Don’t we all love brands like this? If you check the sustainability reports by brands, you will see all the terms such as PCR and biodegradable. Kiehl’s also shares a glossary at the bottom of their brand sustainability page.
Best Food & Beverage Sustainability Ad Campaigns by Brands
Here’s another fact:
The water footprint for a cup of coffee, which you cannot start the day without, is approximately 140 lt (37 gallons).
According to the study published on National Geographic, only in the USA 500 million straws are used per day. Let’s imagine how the material choice for these straws can affect the environment.
Environmentalist nutritionists draw attention to the footprints of the foods we prefer to eat. Before proceeding with any food & beverage sustainability ad, I wanted to mention that. Let’s take “quinoa” as an example here. It is very high in protein and has become very “popular” recently. But it’s coming from countries such as Peru and Chile where people, unfortunately, cannot easily afford other protein resources such as meat.
When we run to the supermarkets for quinoa, we actually cause the people in Peru to buy quinoa at higher prices in their own country. Because there is a natural balance in the world, and we mess it up under “popularism” and “unconsciousness”. Anyways, let me get back to the best sustainability ads in the food & beverage sector.
Sustainable Beer Packaging
Instead of the plastic six-pack rings, Corona has a more sustainable packaging now:
Here is a smarter option:
Here is another alternative to plastic from Guinness’ sustainable beer packaging:
Here is Carlsberg’s renewable bottle as a part of their brand sustainability campaigns:
Budweiser is now brewed with renewable energy in Canada. Here you can see the article.
Recycled Water Beer
Did you know this was a thing? Newbrew and Pure Water Brew from the States made beer using recycled water.
Best IT & Technology Sustainability Ad Campaigns by Brands
I will leave it up to you to believe in IT & Tech brands’ sustainability ads and pledges. Although I have to mention that I do not find them very sincere, I still appreciate their efforts.
Some of the companies are releasing their sustainability report every year to keep their consumers updated with the latest status. Samsung has just released its 2021 sustainability report. They also stated that they aim to collect 7.5 million tons of discarded products by 2030.
I think we all know how harmful fireworks are to the environment. We’re getting more digitalized but we don’t want to easily leave our traditional habits either. Intel had a very creative ad for the Fourth of July in 2015. I wouldn’t say it is a great “sustainable” ad campaign as it uses a lot of electricity to do that. However, it is definitely better than fireworks.
Best Nonprofit Organizations (NPO) and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO) Sustainability Ad Campaigns by Brands
Here my favorite part is! I think you will agree with me but I believe these organizations are the most sincere ones when it comes to environment and sustainability.
The reason why WWF exists is a sustainable future. Their website says:
Our mission is to conserve nature and reduce the most pressing threats to the diversity of life on Earth.
If you are looking for a sustainable gifts for your loved ones, you should check their sustainable products. Or you can adopt an animal or donate easily through their trusted website.
Green Peace is another famous NGO for sustainability. Here they say:
We want to live on a healthy, peaceful planet. A planet where forests flourish, oceans are full of life and where once-threatened animals safely roam.
Where our quality of life is measured in relationships, not things. Where our food is delicious, nutritious, and grown with love. Where the air we breathe is fresh and clear. Where our energy is as clean as a mountain stream. Where everyone has the security, dignity and joy we all deserve.
It’s all possible. We can’t make it happen alone, but have no doubt: We can do it together.
Don’t we all?
The Global Goals is supported by the UN. Their key goals are to eradicate poverty, reduce inequality, and address the threat of climate change.
Unlike the majority of NGOs, The Global Goals’ website is very colorful which I think have an impact on how people feel about a more sustainable future.
Best Sustainability Actions by Digital Agencies
And digital agencies are my second favorite category in this article. They usually are the first one, but in this article NPOs outweighs little more.
I admire how fast digital agencies adapt and lead when it comes to taking real actions for social phenomena such as diversity, inclusion, and sustainability.
Of course, they work with a lot of brands from different sectors to broaden their vision. But, I have to give their credit for being so good at it. Although these are not quite sustainability ads per say, they are very creative actions to inspire others. So, here they are.
Propeller is a 360° digital agency with offices in London, Manchester and New York. They have a lot of great work focusing on a greener future. You can see their recent press release here.
Luminary is an Australian digital agency who is known for its NGO partners. Since 2019, the agency has been carbon neutral, with its emissions offset by the Yarra Yarra Biodiversity Reforestation Project in Western Australia. It has also had team tree-planting days and switched to aluminum bottles and retain cups in its offices, replacing plastic bottles and throwaway coffee cups.
Also, they have beenofficially certified as a B Corp, confirming its commitment to corporate social responsibility.
With offices in London and Nottingham, Impression is a multi-award winning digital agency. They have recently become a carbon negative business. As a part of their digital agency sustainability projects, they have planted over 10,000 trees.
You will love this one:
Over to you
I hope these top brand sustainability ad campaigns have inspired you to take action or at least to consume more consciously. Remember brands have to offer us whatever we want to buy. So if we want to consume sustainable products, brands will have to produce them. And they will come up with the best environmental sustainability ad campaigns.