How B2C companies can use sustainable video content to boost their ESG messaging in 2024.
It’s no secret that video content is one of the most influential tools in the marketing playbook. In an increasingly online world, video will become more important.
Already, 71% of consumers say that purchasing decisions are affected by video content. Social media feeds are also filled with video content, and it’s estimated that the average user watches about 100 minutes of video per day.
Furthermore, users upload around 720,000 minutes of video to YouTube each day. With this amount of content in circulation, it’s becoming harder and harder for brands to stand out.
One method that companies use to get attention is to highlight their work in the environmental space and create content centred on sustainable values and principles.
Given that 78% of consumers say that sustainability is a key part of their purchasing decisions, it makes sense that companies focus on environmental messaging in their videos.
When executed well, sustainable content allows companies to stand out and possibly garner media attention.
Video has always been a part of sustainable messaging. For example, Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth (2006) is credited by many with introducing the concept of climate change to the general public.
As people started to care more about the sustainability of their daily lives, companies responded by changing the content they produce. 47% of brand-based social media video content now has some form of sustainable messaging.
However, people are becoming sceptical. Companies can no longer capture attention simply by flagging support for a cause. Consumers are now looking for organisations to match their support with genuine action.
In 2017, Pepsi released a video that suggested Kendall Jenner could hold the solution to Black Lives Matter protests simply by handing a police officer a can of Pepsi.
Observers derided the video on social media as being wholly tone-deaf, and eventually, Pepsi pulled the video.
The ordeal showed that today's average consumer can see through basic statements that don't come from a place of authenticity.
Creating a video supporting a cause without aligning your company's operations can often result in people seeing your content as nothing but marketing fluff. Video content must be transparent and reveal actual initiatives – not just pay lip service.
Patagonia is a company renowned for the quality of its sustainable video content and its real work on sustainable causes.
The company has embraced numerous initiatives, including making up to 91% of its clothing using recycled materials.
As a result, its videos present as wholly sincere and resonate with consumers. For example, Patagonia’s homegrown series, centred around using recyclable building materials in farming, has over 300,000 views.
Compelling content isn’t just a one-off. Sustainable initiatives and campaigns are smaller steps along a bigger journey.
Consistently posting sustainable-focused content not only maintains a company's presence in peoples’ social media feeds, but also nurtures a sense of credibility – rather than the impression that they are hijacking trends.
The Body Shops’ 2023 “changemaker” video series is a new instalment in a long line of Body Shop campaigns focusing on sustainable causes. These campaigns date back 40 years to their initial support of Greenpeace’s “Save the Whale” campaign in 1982.
This legacy gives their video campaigns a sense of authenticity; the “changemaker” campaign often generates over 1.8 million views.
For example, in 2023, Timberland launched the Timberloop campaign, which put a new spin on traditional sustainable content by integrating a physical product.
Timberland’s campaign featured a short video explaining how Timberland customers can drop off their old products which are then recycled to create new ones.
The program has been immensely popular, and the video had over 10,000 views in one hour.
Sustainable messaging in video is a great way to garner attention and foster a positive view towards a brand or company. However, getting this wrong is easy, so it’s important to consider where this content comes from.
People are more sceptical these days and will ask: Is this video a genuine attempt to report and reflect on a company's true feelings? Or is it a cynical bid to capitalise on a trend?
The solution to this problem lies in finding the right video production company to capture your company's true feelings and beliefs.
At Broadley, our content creation service has 25 years of pre and post-production experience, a talented and award-winning team and all the latest high-spec equipment.
We’re passionate about sustainability and are committed to the UN’s Global Goals Initiative for 2030. We love bringing your ideas to life beautifully and with engaging and innovative formats.