Jeremy Julian

Marketing Sustainability: What You Need To Know

October 12, 2017

Sustainability: the avoidance of the depletion of natural resources in order to maintain an ecological balance. In another words, if there is a scarce resource, do not use it until its gone. Let’s say you are an owner and/or operator of a restaurant that prides itself in their sustainability practices: how can you use that to get customers through the door?


That’s where we come in.


Today, we are going to discuss how to market sustainability.


Tell Your Story
The most important thing an owner can do is to tell their story of why they what they do. Everyone has a unique reason and story. Tell it. The more human you are, the more your customers and potential customers will be able to connect to your brand.


So how do you tell that story?


Through marketing and customer experience. Use your message of sustainability in brand messaging, digital screens, even down to the materials used in the restaurant. A perfect example is Ted’s Montana Grill. “If it’s a customer’s first time at Ted’s, we open up about how our brand conserves the American bison,” says Derek Walls, the chain’s PR and marketing manager. The concept’s other sustainability efforts, such as water and energy conservation and recycling, are communicated via postcards on every table, each of which reveal one of Ted’s initiatives.


Communicate To Your Team
If sustainability is important to your brand, then your employees should understand it. Start at the interview process to make sure staff has this core value in common. And from there, provide materials to your team. Remember: your people are your brand.


Highlight Seasonality & Source
If you source vegetables from local farms, tell your customers! Same with fish, meat and poultry. Buying from local businesses means you are part of the community. So use this to your advantage. Highlight these ingredients on your menus. Take a visit to the where your ingredients are sourced and share it on social media. These are huge opportunity lots of restaurants neglect.


One additional tip to keep in mind (including all the above): be humble and keep it simple. Be sensible about how you market and the language you use. The last thing you ever want to do is annoy or insult your customers. We only have one Earth and we are all in this together. Do good.

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