This past year, the globe was shut in by the COVID-19 pandemic and climate change has reached a breaking point. It’s more essential than ever to consider the environmental effect of everything we do, purchase, and wear. Around the world, for 67% of people, it has become more essential for the companies they select to contribute positively to society beyond simply providing excellent service or good products. And all of this spills over into the realm of beauty. We are all aware of the alarming fact that fashion is the second most polluting sector in the world, behind the petroleum industry. As we get a better understanding of how we arrived at this position, it becomes easier to blame fast fashion for the environmental harm that has been done.
Sustainable Business Practices for Brands
Following the initiatives of companies like Dior, we’ve had leaders like them to help usher in the transformation we need. Sustainability has always been a priority for the company, from the production process to the rights of its employees. As such, their new #beautyasalegacy campaign is no exception. Beauty As A Legacy is a massive initiative by Dior that is divided into many areas, including women at the forefront of creativity, biodiversity and its effect on agriculture, pioneers of eco-design, and the responsible art of giving. Each component of the programme demonstrates how Dior supports its employees. Meanwhile, the enterprise is also ensuring that their goods and production processes are environmentally friendly.
Chanel has made a concerted effort over the past 10 years to emphasise its commitment to sustainability. The luxury company has lately supported a number of climate change projects. They recruited experienced professionals to help it achieve its sustainability goals, including Kate Wylie, who was recently named as Chanel’s Global Chief Sustainability Officer. As the Global President of Chanel Foundation, Wylie is also responsible for the brand’s philanthropic endeavours on a global scale, including the elimination of gender inequity and the empowerment of young women. The main objective of the company is to help with the transition to a low-carbon future by addressing the critical issue of climate change. The company launched CHANEL Mission 1.5° in 2020 as a means to comply with the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement goals, which call for keeping average global temperature rises to 1.5 degrees Celsius on average.
LVHM’s long-term commitments result in real advantages for the general public. LVMH considers environmental protection not just a moral responsibility but also a business necessity and a source of competitive advantage. Since LVMH’s long-term survival depends on the natural resources used in their goods’ manufacture, it is necessary to preserve and respect them . While they are increasing competitiveness, they do so by incorporating environmental considerations into their manufacturing processes. This approach makes them more dependable and sharpens their ability to lead. People and their uniqueness are respected as individuals, and this is the basic concept that underpins LVHM’s social duty.
Luxury Brands Continue to Step Up Their Efforts
L’Oréal Paris has conducted a thorough assessment of its value chain in order to continue providing effective and safe products while also respecting planetary limits. Every aspect of the value chain has been studied, measured, and improved. This ranges from formulas to packaging, from in-plant production procedures to customer awareness and relationships with producers. The sustainability programme is based on four principles:
-Optimising packing materials to expedite the transition to a circular economy
-Utilise the same product lines with much more efficient and environmentally friendly formulas
-Generating beauty that is responsible for the environment
-Making investments in environmental initiatives through programmes that empower women.
Furthermore, L’Oréal Paris will spend €10 million on a number of subsequent carbon initiatives, the beneficiaries of which will be women’s groups from across the globe. This is because women are the main victims of climate change. In addition to financial assistance, L’Oréal Paris will promote the greater participation of women in the leadership of these initiatives. For example, in Honduras indigenous groups are working to preserve and restore mangroves. Thus, the company will fund a project run by a collective of women who will be given assistance and professional training.
Estee Lauder’s climate-related approach focuses on energy efficiency and on-site/off-site renewable power sources. As a result of these efforts, the risks connected with laws that raise the cost of energy may be reduced. Besides, strategic advantage can be gained by lowering operational expenses. Therefore, they have chosen a portfolio strategy to lower GHG emissions, including the use of on-site renewables, a Virtual Power Purchase Agreement (VPPA) for wind energy, energy efficiency initiatives, green utility contracts, and renewable energy credits. The fund was created to assist low-carbon sustainability projects in support of the 2020 Net Zero target.
Rise of the Activist Consumer
Growing activism impacts consumer buying choices, with consumers being less fearful of boycotting businesses that do not meet their expectations. Moreover, it is not just young consumers who are seeking to include altruism into their shopping baskets. In essence, individuals from all walks of life are doing so. Recently, the public has shown that it is concerned about environmental, social, and cultural problems with a strong sense of urgency. In other words, the people are unwilling to accept the status quo in these matters.
Because of consumer activism and conscious consumerism, more individuals are purchasing from companies with which they agree. Conversely, they are boycotting those brands with which they disagree. Individuals are showing an increased interest in alternative products and companies that are consistent with their worldviews. This tendency is especially visible when it comes to fighting climate change. Consumer activism with a sustainability focus is a fresh twist on an old strategy. This comes under the umbrella of what we now refer to as conscious consumerism, or “conscious consumption”.
Real Change, Please
Customers want companies that will make long-term, realistic, and generous contributions to important social problems. It is important for them to understand how much of their money is directed towards social initiatives. According to the findings of an independent research commissioned by SmartestEnergy, customers are increasingly choosing companies that are dedicated to environmental sustainability. Four out of five individuals are more inclined to select companies that take a good approach to environmental sustainability. There has been a significant improvement, as 90 per cent of respondents believe it is critical for society to become more energy-aware
Leverage Your Influence
Donations from brands to consumer-supported organisations are admirable, but what’s even more admirable? Utilising your network and position to make a meaningful difference in our society. Enterprises that connect their fortunes to social movements feel they are doing the right thing by their stakeholders. At the same time, they are also taking advantage of a chance to improve their own companies. Consequently,, brands have become potent agents of change in the modern world. Customers all around the globe are linked to them and deeply integrated into their daily lives and decisions. Nonetheless, most customers show their support by praising the ideals embodied in their philosophy and public image.
Affiliation with a charitable organisation no longer garners positive publicity for the organisation itself. Consumers want to know precisely how much of their hard-earned cash is being invested, where it is being spent, and what effect it is having on the society. The greater the proportion of money contributed and the greater the level of information provided, the more trust your brand can cultivate. One study conducted by Edelman revealed that 81 per cent of customers stated that they need to be able to trust the business in order to purchase from them. The proportion of customers who felt this way was comparable across various worldwide marketplaces, different ages, and even across different levels of income. Trust and transparency truly go hand in hand: according to Accenture, 66% of customers believe that transparency is one of a brand’s most appealing characteristics
Make Local Investments
Movements and problems in society represent complex ecosystems with numerous players working simultaneously. Unlike a conventional marketing campaign strategy, operating inside these areas isn’t just about sending out appropriate messaging or generating interaction. It’s about understanding who’s already within the system and being open and receptive to acknowledge where a brand can offer the most significance. Understanding your local region and supporting community initiatives will earn confidence and respect from your customers. Don’t forget that your clients are also your greatest source of inspiration. Knowing about their lives can assist you in developing creative and meaningful campaigns with true passion.
All of the most important social and environmental issues of our day must be addressed by modern-day brand executives. Every worldwide brand is now doing its part to assist the environment and preserve long-term viability. Increasingly, customers are waking up to the harsh realities of the present environmental situation, and brands must adapt.