3 Actions Your Company Can Take Right Now

career advice must-know sustainable business Jan 20, 2023

Just started a brand and want to make sustainability a cornerstone of your business? Has your brand been around for a while, but sustainability has taken a backseat? It’s never too early or too late to start incorporating sustainability into the fabric of your brand!

There are 3 actions your brand can take right now to get started on the path to a more sustainable business, but if you prefer to watch videos over reading, check out our YouTube video on this topic. Let’s get into how you can start improving your business in 3 easy steps!

#1: Focus on Overproduction

Overproduction has been rearing its ugly head for decades now, but with the right resources, your brand can find ways to avoid it.

With a focus on planning, with particular attention on growth and buys, your company will help reduce the amount of excess inventory in stock. Typically, the problem with excess inventory is that the product has to be moved by slashing prices. In fact, we’ve created an entire sales channel for goods at said slashed prices. Those of us who love a good sale likely see this as a good thing, but consistent sales often send the wrong message to consumers.

When a brand continues to reduce prices on its items, it promotes overconsumption on the consumers’ end. When prices are low enough or if a customer sees something is discounted, it often promotes them to justify the purchase, even if they know they don’t really need the item. Raise your hand with me you’re feeling guilty as charged :) 

Of course, your brand wants to promote growth and the easiest way that can be accomplished is through sales, but consider our next point…

#2: Longevity

Instead of making products that have low value and can be discounted heavily, your brand can make products designed to last. One of the lowest hanging fruits when it comes to “sustainable fashion” - no certifications, no memberships, no adoption of new innovations…just good attention to quality.

With longevity in mind, your company will likely need to invest in better materials, craftsmanship, and construction. Think of some of the best brands who do this - Patagonia, Blundstone, and Nudie Jeans are all prime examples of how investing in your product will reduce impacts overall.

Along with investing in these three factors, your brand should also incentivize customers to repair their goods. Patagonia and Levi’s both do a great job of encouraging people to hold onto their products for as long as possible through careful use, repairs, and tailoring. 

Often, investing in longevity means the price of your product will go up, which may seem scary. However, if you have a loyal customer base, they’ll understand why your products cost as much as they do and they’ll be more willing to make the investment themselves. Now, you could argue that there are financial limitations to buying more sustainable products and we 100% agree. Green premiums are a real thing, but we’ll save that topic for another day…

Now that you’ve got the first two actions checked off, it’s time to spread the word!

#3: Communicate with Customers

You’re on the right track and your next major step is to communicate your efforts with your customers. You’ve put in the time and effort to create a good product and create an efficient process, and there’s no shame in celebrating your wins.

One of the biggest things we want to avoid doing when we communicate with customers is greenwashing. Aside from simply false sustainability marketing claims, greenwashing happens when we exaggerate the scale of our sustainability efforts and make them seem more impactful than it actually is. 

Your communication should be humble, simple and honest - let people know what you’ve accomplished, what you’re doing, why your product costs what it costs, traceability efforts, impacts associated with externalities, and more. It may seem scary to be so transparent and put your brand out there like that, but you and the team have put in the hard work and that deserves some recognition.

That’s it! Three steps to get you started on the right path. That wasn’t too bad, but remember, sustainability doesn’t have an endpoint. It takes consistent effort and resources. Take the time to become familiar with sustainable fashion and keep developing new goals. 

You can learn more by signing up for our membership platform designed to support those who are looking to drive change in the fashion industry. Learn about current events and challenges in the apparel space, what other brands are doing to advance their sustainability efforts, breakdowns of the latest sustainability reports, and so much more. 

Thanks for joining me and I’ll see you next week!


#sustainability #climateaction #sustainablefashion

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