By now you’ve heard the term sustainability more times than you can count, but how many times have you thought about what this word means? According to this article by Forbes, sustainability “can be defined as providing for the present needs without compromising the needs of the future generations to meet theirs.”(2) We tend to lump sustainability and products made from recycled materials together as one in the same; however, there is so much more to sustainability than meets the eye. Just because something is made from eco-friendly materials, doesn’t mean it’s sustainable. So today we’re introducing a new term . . . last-ability . . . and we’re going to discuss how important it is for your brand to source and design merch that will last.
Ask for earth-friendlier materials
It’s not the be all end all, but one of the first places to start as you embrace sustainability is the material used to manufacture your merch. According to this article, sustainable materials fall into one of three categories: natural, renewable, and harmless or non-toxic.(3) Wood, bamboo, hemp, bioplastics and, of course, recycled materials are just some of the resources that fall under one of these categories, and all make for excellent material alternatives. As the demand for products made from earth-friendlier materials is growing, the promotional products industry is starting to offer a growing catalog of brandable, eco-conscious goods. Want to take a look at a few of our favorites? You can do that HERE .
Seek out long-lasting products
This might be obvious, but another important thing to consider when selecting products is the lifespan of the item. When possible, offer products that are durable, high-quality, and good for multiple uses to cut back on waste. This could mean choosing stainless steel or Tritan drinkware, or opting to purchase a smaller quantity of higher priced items to give away at tradeshows instead of blanketing the event with low-priced, low-quality throwaways. Additionally, and this is huge, the last-ability of a branded item isn’t determined solely by the product itself, but also by the design and messaging you print on the product. No one wants to carry your business card on their water bottle. Get creative! Be intentional about design. Use fun messages to get people’s attention and, as often as possible, print your logo and branding more discreetly. The fact of the matter is people won’t see your logo if they aren’t even keeping the product. For something to last, it must first be kept!
Be picky about packaging
Don’t let your efforts to be more earth-friendly stop with the products themselves. Consider ways you can make the packaging that products are delivered in more sustainable too. Bundling products in a shipment, using recycled packaging materials, and opting for packing paper over packing peanuts are all easy ways to make a huge difference. We would love the opportunity to discuss packaging options with you and are proud to work with suppliers certified by the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI), the largest single forest standard in the world.
When it comes to building your brand, it’s important to pick products that will stand the test of time. Being intentional about choosing better products and decorating these products more thoughtfully will help your business be more memorable – and help the planet at the same time. That’s a win-win.
Contact us today – a dedicated member of our team is ready to help you in your quest to source and create meaningful merch that will last. Your business model, your consumers, and the planet will thank you. Let’s talk today!