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News & Views

Prism Viewpoint - Environmental marketing


Since 2018, public pushes for degradable products and environmental marketing have been commonplace.  Increasingly, companies are using disposable coffee cups, recycled paper and biodegradable plastic alternatives.  Documentaries from the likes of Sir David Attenborough in the BBC’s Blue Planet II (2017), for example, have helped to raise widespread awareness.
A worrying statistic shows that many consumers feel confused by the notion of ‘green marketing’.  Rather than focus on actively investing in responsible products, up to 67% of people believe that phrases and buzzwords are an active turn-off, according to a study by OnBuy in January 2020.
In OnBuy’s same study, they discuss how 83% of shoppers feel that green marketing is misleading.  There are concerns that businesses are doing more to insist that they are environmentally-conscious, rather than doing anything to truly reduce their carbon footprint.
“You only need to look at more of the statistics to see that people are crying out for responsible marketing and packaging.  Not only are a huge percentage of people willing to pay extra, around 89% of people actively care that their everyday materials are recyclable.  But are we really doing enough?” ,” asks Gary David Smith, Co-Founder, Prism (

Not only does there need to be a bigger push for adoption of recyclable material, companies need to do more to educate their public.  According to a study by Veolia, 27% of people believe that all coffee cups are wholly recyclable.  “But is that really the case?” says Smith.
Over half of all UK goods are packed in plastic.  Around 38% of the average supermarket trolley containing material that can’t be recycled, according to the Green Clean Guide, and with plastic being so extremely harmful to the environment conscious companies are willing to make a change.

“Companies such as Prism are avoiding single-use plastic as well as pushing for a larger adoption of recyclable packaging and printing material,” says Smith.
However, what’s likely to stop some companies from going fully eco-friendly is the cost factor.  “We all need to think about costings – but there are more than a few good reasons why it’s important we pay this price now,” says Smith.
“Companies like Prism have a duty to protect the environment.  Some companies may not feel that they impact much upon the world around them.  However, every time you don’t recycle that coffee cup, and don’t use responsibly sourced paper, you are making a negative impact.”
“Businesses need to add this to their vision plans,” Smith continues.  “Already, some companies are coming under fire for not making a big enough effort.  Some firms are avoiding the subject altogether.”
“Statistics show that younger buyers actively want to pay more for recyclable products – and this can’t be ignored.  Surely these buying intentions could offset the upfront costs of investment?  We need to think about what future generations are likely to invest in, not what’s going to save us money in the here and now.”
There are many big brands who actively push green marketing.  Prism Solutions invests in bamboo coffee cups and aims to reduce single use plastic.  They are even using biodegradable stationery, and solely print on responsibly sourced paper.

“Many people are finding what we are doing at Prism to be very exciting, says Gary David Smith.  “Green marketing isn’t a craze or a trend that’s going away any time soon.  In 2020, more companies need to start opening up to the idea of making an impact through sustainability.”


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