In building products marketing, green behavior is one positioning strategy that will provide you a strong competitive advantage and greater potential for growth.
There are many reasons for a manufacturer of building products to become environmentally friendly. The environment is one aspect, but it’s also just good business. Growth in the green segment market share is proving that sustainable products are no longer just fringe alternatives.
“Consumer demand is the primary driver of investment in sustainable initiatives today… and companies [we surveyed] reported that they can charge an average 19 percent premium for sustainable products and services.” (Accenture, “Long-Term Growth, Short-Term Differentiation and Profits from Sustainable Products and Services)
The 2013 Small Business Sustainability Report is a study of more than 1,300 U.S. business owners’ green-related behaviors and beliefs. It’s the first major study to look at the green economy from the perspective of small business owners. It’s also the first to consolidate market data on the growth of green segments across a range of industries – green building, renewable energy, hybrid vehicles, fair trade food, etc.
One of the more revealing results of the report a list of green “best bets” that require little capital. These may not be your best operational efficiency investment, so for a more thorough look at actions with the best ROI (but may not be the cheapest to implement), I urge you to download the report.
Here are nine green actions you can take – WITH AN INITIAL INVESTMENT OF LESS THAN $500 – that will provide the fastest return on investment:
- Train staff to conserve energy
- Enable energy-saving settings on computers
- Install programmable thermostats
- Train staff to conserve water
- Reduce paper use (double-sided printing)
- Shift from paper to electronic communication and filing
- Decrease packaging on products
- Install more efficient lighting
- Recycle and/or reuse in-house plastics, paper, metals, glass, and/or organics
By implementing green changes in your building products manufacturing organization, you will gain customers who support green businesses. You’ll also save money, reduce waste and have a healthier work environment for your employees.