In the past, green strategies could position a brand as being progressive and forward-thinking, among other adjectives. However, due to the influx of so many similar green campaigns, i.e., SunChips' compostable bag and Method's "Inspire a Happy, Healthy Home Revolution," these tactics are becoming increasingly less effective and have led to the creation of the term Greenwashing.
To truly stand out and create a positive corporate or brand identity, marketers need to stop thinking "green" and start thinking "blue."
Feeling Blue Isn't A Bad Thing
Fortunately, blue marketing doesn't involve tears. To put it quite simply, blue marketing is centered on social good campaigns. The Blue Movement is a slowly emerging trend and is at a similar stage to the Green Movement in the early 2000's.The catalyst to the Blue Movement is the belief that there is hope for humanity and a reason to be optimistic.
Capturing A Lucrative Consumer Class
"Believing in the greater good" and "feeling empowered to make a positive change" sounds an awful lot like one of today's most sought after marketing segments -- millennials. An effective blue marketing campaign can directly tap into the mindset of this lucrative demographic. Millennials are among those least receptive to traditional advertising tactics, but inversely, enjoy brands that resonate with their individual vices and personal beliefs. With that being said, a properly executed "blue" branding strategy can create a connection between your brand and these young consumers.
Brands Going Blue
Volkswagen hit the proverbial nail on the head with its "Think Blue" campaign. The company took what would have been a standard green campaign and branded it into something unique. Instead of just positioning itself as another brand-building, fuel-efficient, and environmentally conscious automotive brand, the company focused on how it's forward thinking.
While those are important elements of the initiative, it's more about "being more responsible on the road and more environmentally conscious-not just in our cars, but everywhere, every day." The beauty of the campaign is that it encourages consumers to get involved with events such as beach cleaning and the Think Blue World Championship.
TOMS is another company that has not only crafted a marketing strategy around social good, but crafted its entire brand around that theme. Its "One for One" initiative gives a pair of shoes to a child in need with every purchased pair of TOMS, and is the foundation the entire organization has been erected upon.
These examples show that consumers no longer want brands they can simply depend on; they want brands they can believe in. The more closely a branding strategy aligns with the ideals of its target market, the more effectively you'll be able to build a strong long-lasting relationship with your customers.