Finally, more and more businesses take sustainability into account. Existing companies slowly start incorporating environmental and social responsibility into their strategies. Small businesses do their best to avoid a negative impact on the planet or the opposite, do everything in their power to create a positive influence. Others see sustainability as a big market opportunity and launch new brands and startups targeting environmentally conscious customers.
No matter what the scenario is, the branding should adapt. New companies design their branding from scratch whereas big corporations rebrand to include at least a piece of their new strategies in their logos, brand identities, packaging, web designs and all other items that represent what their business is all about.
All green everything
Greenchoice is a Dutch energy company that only uses sustainable energy, mostly local wind one. Their logo design, as well as entire brand identity, is kept in green color. The use of green is most definitely the most popular sustainable branding trend in the environmentally-conscious industry, used by a variety of brands.
After all, it just speaks for itself. Each customer, being in a position to guess which company is sustainable – one with a green logo or one with a logo in a different color – will certainly pick the first option. Unless they think it was a tricky question.
The logo design zoo
Brands will try to show they’re sustainable by including animals in their branding. These differ so greatly that together we could open a zoo of sustainable logo designs. You certainly know a few of these companies. Examples include the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) or Nestle. Why would they do that? Well, of course partly because of the relevance to nature. However, each animal is associated with a certain characteristic.
Nestle, for example, is a food and beverage company. The bird on its logo is feeding its babies. This not only creates trust and presents the company as reliable but also looks great to catch your eye.
There’s more to sustainability than animals and green
When Toms started their company, they would provide kids in developing countries with a pair of shoes every time you would buy a pair for yourself. Since then the company expanded to doing even more good for the world. Their branding, however, doesn’t include green color, animals or typical nature-related elements like leaves and trees.
Toms uses blue which is a second in the row to be identified as nature or sustainable color, right after green. Another color that brands often use is brown. Actually, any color that naturally occurs on the Earth’s surface would be good for a sustainable company’s branding.
The precious tangible items
Remember that branding goes way beyond the logo only. Although sustainable companies try to avoid an unnecessary number of tangible items like business cards for each employee, stacks of letters, leaflet marketing and so on, sometimes it’s impossible to avoid using these things.
Think, for example, about packaging. You must pack your products somehow, right? In the case of both Toms and Greenchoice, the packaging is made of recyclable materials and kept to its minimum. Moreover, rarely ever there is any physical correspondence to avoid using too much paper. All of this has a direct influence on the customers’ perception of the brand.
Clean and pure images
Last but not least, it’s worth to mention the minimalistic style kept across the branding of sustainable businesses. Minimalism is a trend present across pretty much all industries. The main reason is the fact that the logos must be simple to be easily readable on small devices like smartphones. In the sustainable industry, the additional meaning and metaphor is the pureness and cleanliness of the brand.
Salman Zafar is an ecopreneur, consultant, advisor, speaker and journalist with expertise in waste management, waste-to-energy, renewable energy, environment protection, conservation and sustainable development. His geographical areas of focus include Asia, Middle East, Africa and Europe. Salman is the Founder of EcoMENA, a popular voluntary organization based in Qatar. He is also the Founder and CEO of BioEnergy Consult, a reputed consulting firm active in biomass, waste-to-energy and waste management segments.
Salman is a professional environmental writer with more than 350 popular articles to his credit. He is proactively engaged in creating mass environmental awareness in different parts of the world.
Salman Zafar can be reached at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org