Target Green

2008 Green Trends: Eileen Conway, Citigate Cunningham

By Eileen Conway
Citigate Cunningham

In 2008, I think we’ll see more companies “go green” and that includes PR agencies. Green began to see an incredible amount of media traction in 2007, which will result in internal and external pressure on companies to change corporate and production practices to be more environmentally friendly in 2008. In fact, we already saw a lot of companies begin to highlight green initiatives as a marketing strategy.

However, companies will need to be strategic in how they market their green initiatives in 2008. I think that there will be a backlash to some extent given all the hype in 2007 that will make consumers and media alike more discriminating between the companies that have truly adopted green practices versus the companies that simply try to position themselves as green with little to back it up.

For example, we saw companies this year try to market themselves as green for cutting back on sending direct mail and instead going to email marketing campaigns, etc. I think the companies that will receive recognition in 2008 will be the organizations that make the commitment to go green on a number of levels from cutting back on paper use to making big investments in green technology to significantly reduce greenhouse emissions, etc.

The debate about whether tech PR agencies need to develop and market green practices to be successful is already in full swing. Everyone is asking if green is the new biotech industry. My feeling is that it will be important for agencies to have a comprehensive understanding of green technology and how it fits into the technology industry as a whole. For example, most green products and solutions on the market today are produced by companies that have other core offerings as well. PR agencies that market a green practice will probably fair better than those that don’t, but in the end every tech PR firm will need to have an understanding of green technology in order to survive in the market.

Conway is CEO of Citigate Cunningham in San Francisco.

1 Comment so far

  1. Aaron Handford on January 18th, 2008

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    Companies like Solar Energy Host ( host your website using “Carbon Free” energy. This is better than “Carbon Neutral” because it does not involve the purchasing of Carbon Credits.

    Companies can then market their web hosting as evidence that they are doing all they can to help the environment

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