Published 8 months ago.
About a 4 minute read.
Image: Andrea Piacquadio
To avoid the worst climate impacts, we must prioritize the deployment of emerging climate solutions without delay. To do that, companies must overcome a common marketing challenge.
It's not too late to prevent the most severe consequences of climate change, but
it will require bold and decisive action.
To give us the best shot at limiting global warming to 1.5°C (2.7°F) and
avoiding catastrophic consequences, this must be the decade of decarbonization.
UN Secretary-General António Guterres insists 2023 must be defined by
"game-changing climate action."
Thankfully, there is no shortage of companies working to wean the world off
fossil fuels with
increased investment and support, these companies have the potential to bring
about real and lasting change.
The growth of new climate-tech
continues to show strong momentum — providing new job opportunities and driving
innovation. Fortunately, climate-tech investment keeps up with the trend. In
fact, 2022 was a bumper year: According to a report by Net-Zero Insights,
funding reached an all-time high last year, totalling $82 billion across
Europe and North America.
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We cannot afford to waste time in the adoption of innovative climate
technologies. However, a major hurdle companies can face is getting the public
to understand their product and creating an initial base of customers. This is
understandable given the novel, often complicated nature of solutions.
If companies want to enhance their chances of long-term survival, it’s vital
that they market themselves in an effective way.
One of the things to consider here is focusing on a specific audience rather
than a broad market. Companies need to zoom in on those who benefit most from
their solutions and are ready for change. By focusing on these early adopters,
companies can create a solid base of customers who can help spread the word
about their products to cross the chasm between them and the mainstream market.
Targeting specific audiences through online marketing channels has become
increasingly straightforward and effective. And best of all, this approach is
highly cost-effective. Platforms such as Google Search, Google Display
Network and LinkedIn Campaign Manager offer businesses a range of tools
and features that allow for laser-focused audience targeting.
Imagine: You represent a cleantech company (or a company with another type of
climate solution); you have a limited budget or are still in the customer
development phase and have different hypotheses to test before launching
large-scale campaigns. For your initial campaigns or creating a solid base of
early adopters, you will not want to reach every Head of Procurement or Head of
Innovation out there. As we can see in this example screenshot, there are
7.4 million such decision makers in Europe, North America and the Middle
It may be smarter to start with those Heads of Innovation and Heads of
Procurement who are familiar with and are interested in such notions as a
circular economy, sustainability and cleantech. To reach such decision makers,
you can apply additional filters in LinkedIn Campaign Manager.
Additionally, you can adjust the audience and extend or narrow it down with the
filters specific for your niche to include people with other titles who take
part in the purchasing decision for your product or service and/or other
Likewise, when advertising via Google Ads, it is possible to zoom in on
people who are ready for change and are already looking for sustainable
solutions and lifestyles. For example, the audience filters in Google Ads can
help you target people based on their interests and/or what they are actively
To win the early adopters, companies must define a clear and compelling value
When marketing a sustainable solution, companies should emphasize how it meets
the core needs of that specific audience. Instead of focusing on how a solution
will benefit future generations, it's crucial to highlight the immediate
benefits. Companies can also incorporate sustainability as an additional bonus
of their solution. This approach allows businesses to effectively communicate
the value of their products to those who benefit most from it now.
This sentiment was shared by marketing experts who spoke at a recent panel
facilitated by sustainability marketing agency Orange Bird in conjunction
with the International Chamber of Commerce. A number of panelists agreed on
the importance of highlighting that many climate solutions are "win-win" and
offer additional benefits in addition to mitigating climate change, such as cost
savings and improved quality of life.
Kate Barabanova from
zero-emission aviation company ZeroAvia said
marketers promoting sustainable practices need to “sell the benefits of
mitigating climate change to people.”
“We need to make people want a sustainable product as much as a new smartphone
or another pair of shoes,” she said. “As marketers, you know how to sell a
product, right? You define the target audience; based on that you choose
marketing instruments — you promote your product, which is action against
climate change. [Then] analyze, adjust and repeat. We should get this idea to
the very bottom of people’s hearts and souls.”
Published Mar 8, 2023 10am EST / 7am PST / 3pm GMT / 4pm CET
Before becoming aware of the depth and urgency of the climate crisis, Alena enjoyed a successful career in software technology and services marketing. With over 18 years of experience in diverse marketing roles, in 2017, she founded Orange Bird — a sustainability-focused marketing agency with a clear mission: to combat climate change by promoting businesses that provide climate and circular solutions. Alena firmly believes in the power of collaboration to achieve sustainability goals, mitigate the climate crisis, and drive the shift to a circular economy.