Environmentalism has become a critically important issue. Climate change, habitat loss, pollution, and depletion of natural resources affects every living creature on the planet. Humans are not immune to the effects of these problems. Higher energy costs, pandemics, natural disasters, and toxic exposure can all spring directly from humans’ impact on the environment.
As a result, the general public is very interested in reading about sustainability tips and tricks. Nearly 80% of Americans view humans’ impact on the environment as a major problem or crisis and 85% say that they expect to make at least some sacrifices to reduce the impact of climate change.
As a topic with a high degree of interest, conservation, and sustainability tips and tricks can drive traffic to your company’s website, regardless of your business. Websites that publish at least 16 blogs per month receive over three times more traffic than websites that publish fewer than four blogs per month. While you are developing your content schedule, include at least a few environmental and sustainability tips and tricks to address your customers’ concerns and draw them into your website.
Here are some ideas for approaching topics relating to sustainability tips and tricks for your company website:
Relate to Your Reader
Understand your readers’ concerns about how your business interacts with the environment. This will not only provide content for your blog but will optimize the search results that drive customers to your blog.
If your business has a direct impact on the environment, such as a delivery business, readers will want to know the sustainability tips and tricks you use to use to make your delivery vehicles more energy efficient and how you use route planning to reduce fuel consumption.
Even if your business is not directly involved in an industry tied to the environment, such as marketing or accounting, customers may still want to know how your business puts sustainability tips and tricks into effect to reduce its carbon footprint. For these kinds of businesses, you can write about how your business uses a furniture recycling program to eliminate waste or implemented an electronic document management system to go paperless.
Use Specific Examples
If your blog focuses on sustainability tips and tricks that the reader can use, make sure to include specific examples.
Thus, instead of telling readers to “reduce energy consumption,” you can explain how the majority of energy use in a typical home goes to heating and cooling. You can then provide sustainability tips and tricks to make the readers’ heating and cooling system more efficient such as cleaning their ducts and switching to efficient spiral ducts that are less prone to air leaks.
Written in this way, the reader gains knowledge of both the problem — energy waste — and some possible solutions.
Remember to Make Your Pitch
A company blog is intended to drive traffic to the company’s website. Whether you make a soft pitch or a hard pitch, remember to mention your business somewhere in the blog.
A soft pitch is intended to build your brand and define your company’s values. For example, a soft pitch might be to explain how your law firm is committed to environmental protection. This might not serve to directly sell your legal services, but can build up goodwill with potential clients who are also concerned about the environment and believe in patronizing socially conscious businesses.
Polls show that businesses cannot discount this type of brand-building. Two-thirds of customers say they are willing to spend more with companies that have sustainable practices and over 80% of Millennials expect the brands they patronize to be socially responsible.
A hard pitch is intended to get customers to use your goods or services to implement your sustainability tips and tricks. For example, a manufacturer may discuss the natural drop in efficiency as a water heater ages, then specifically pitch the customer on buying an energy saving new water heater made by the manufacturer.
You have to be careful about how “sales-y” your pitch is because consumers are sometimes turned off by infomercials. However, if your blog article setting up the pitch is well researched and presents a logical and compelling case for your company’s products, you can balance both the need to educate the reader and the need to sell your company’s goods and services.
Use Fear Judiciously
Environmentalism is sometimes dismissed as fear-mongering and guilt-tripping. When presenting your sustainability tips and tricks, try to avoid telling readers that they will destroy the world if they do not follow your advice. Instead, explain how a few tips and tricks, practiced widely, can benefit the reader, the environment, and society.
For example, toxic yard chemicals have many detrimental effects such as:
- Poisoning people and animals that apply them.
- Seeping into ground water and be ingested by local residents.
- Robbing the soil of it natural nutrients.
- Reducing biodiversity.
- Causing undesirable organisms to flourish, like toxic algae.
However, rather than focusing on how detrimental these chemicals are to the environment, a natural lawn care company could quickly explain the dangers of artificial pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers and suggest natural alternatives. With the reader primed for a solution to dangerous chemicals, the blog can then pitch both the idea of natural lawn care and the business’s products and services using natural treatments.
Understand the Science
When providing sustainability tips and tricks, you should do some research into the basis for your blog post. Make sure you do not fall prey to urban legends or viral claims without first verifying them.
Fortunately, the Internet has many resources for fact-checking scientific claims. Search engines can make quick work of most assertions of fact. Moreover, you can often reach out to experts via social media or email to verify claims that you cannot verify using a search engine.
Providing misleading or incorrect advice can expose you and your company to all kinds of different problems, including:
- Negative publicity: Your business could be accused of lacking expertise in providing sustainability tips and tricks or, worse yet, misleading readers.
- Loss of credibility: You, as a blog writer, and your business may lose the trust of readers.
- Lawsuits: In a worst-case scenario, if your sustainability tips and tricks lead to injuries or property damage, your company could be sued.
For example, suppose you promote your company’s roof coverings by saying that they are environmentally safe and non-toxic. If it turns out that the chemicals in the roof replacement material give off toxic fumes, your blog post might be used as evidence that your company was misleading consumers about the safety of your products.
Take the Time to Explain Your Sustainability Tips and Tricks
Keep in mind that readers do not have the same level of expertise in your company’s products that you have. Consequently, you should take the time in your blog posts to explain claims to environmental, sustainable, and conservation benefits.
For example, a tree removal company can provide environmental benefits, such as:
- Preventing the spread of disease and pests from an infested tree to healthy trees.
- Limiting the susceptibility to spreading wildfires if the tree is dead or dying.
- Reducing water consumption by removing non-native or water-intensive trees.
However, for a tree removal company to just make the general claim that it is environmentally friendly and sustainable will confuse most readers. They would view tree removal as environmentally unfriendly without further explanation.
However, by taking the time to explain how your services improve the environment without adding a commensurate cost, such as carbon emissions, you might be able to persuade readers to become customers.
Readers searching for sustainability tips and tricks usually want to find something new. Rather than recycling the same claims that can be found all over the web, try to insert something new or, even better, present something that is contrary to the conventional wisdom.
Adding something new to the conversation gives your blog two advantages over the competition.
- Your blog post might go viral as readers share your unique take.
- You might draw links from other reputable sites.
Both of these benefits will not only give your blog post higher search engine visibility but will also build your company’s brand as forward-thinking and creative.
For example, while writing a blog for an equipment rental company, you might identify the reduction in waste by renting equipment rather than buying. However, you could also get creative and explain how using the newest rental equipment for each job guarantees that the reader conserves energy with the most efficient equipment available.
Give Away Something for Free
People love free stuff. Moreover, they usually do not respond well to bait-and-switch tactics, like a blog that lays out a problem but ends with “to learn my sustainability tips and tricks to solving this problem, buy my book.”
For your sustainability blog, you will likely need to balance free stuff with paid products. After all, the purpose of your company’s blog is to make money, directly or indirectly. However, companies can find many ways to give away something for free including:
- Free advice: The easiest way to give something away for free is to give away free advice. To be viewed as truly valuable, however, you may need to give away free advice that is not widely available. For example, insider advice or life “hacks” that your business has developed can be the kind of free advice that goes viral and drives even more traffic to your website. For example, an online retailer might offer sustainability tips and tricks like corrugated cardboard recycling into compost and reusing its packing peanuts as drainage material in large planters.
- Free solutions: Even if your products can mitigate or solve the problem identified in your blog, you can also suggest other free solutions that the average consumer can carry out. So, in addition to suggesting your company’s new air conditioner to reduce cooling costs, you might also suggest like opening windows on cool summer nights and closing blinds or curtains during the hot summer days.
- Free incentives: Coupons, discounts, and giveaways are always appreciated by consumers.
- Free downloads: Content, like infographics, charts, worksheets, and even kids’ activities can reinforce your educational message and build your brand as readers print out the content and hang it on their refrigerators.
Engage with Your Readers
Once you write your content, you should plan to interact with your readers. The level of engagement that readers expect has been set by social media. As a result, readers are accustomed to posting comments and receiving replies from the business, if not the blog author.
This will give you and your company the ability to begin and sustain a conversation about environmentalism and sustainability. You will have the opportunity to add information that might not have fit into the blog post. Your readers can respond with some specific tips and tricks of their own that might even improve your blog post. For example, a blog post for a pawn shop about shopping second hand might start a whole conversation about the kinds of products that a second-hand shopper can find the best deals on.
When posting sustainability tips and tricks, you might receive corrections and legitimate criticism, which is always useful. However, you will also need a policy for moderating comments received on your blog for comments that are abusive or harassing. The keys to developing a policy for moderating comments are to make your standards clear and enforce them fairly. Using automatic filters for certain words can help keep the comments from getting out of control.
Promote Your Blog
Promotion of a blog will be key to using the blog to drive traffic to your company’s website. An unpromoted blog just sits there waiting to be discovered by search engines. While this can eventually help draw readers to your site, this can be a slow process.
Instead of taking a passive approach, you can take a few active measures to increase your blog’s visibility:
- Search engine optimization: Identify keywords that users enter into search engines and include those keywords in your blog. This will help your blog rank among the search results for those keywords. For example, if your used sports equipment business’s website ranks poorly for used boat for sale on search engines, write an article about the environmental benefits of buying used boats and make sure to use that phrase a few times in your blog post.
- Social media promotion: Promoting articles on social media can jump start traffic to your blog. Not only can social media cause your blog post to go viral, but search engine rankings are also, in part, dependent on shares and views. As a result, virality feeds virality.
- Email promotion: Create an email newsletter using your company’s email list. Existing customers are the most likely to be interested in your content since they have previously purchased your products or signed up for your email promotions.
Writing a blog that highlights your company’s commitment to the environment will draw readers to your site. Environmentalism, conservationism, and sustainability are topics of great interest among all consumers, but particularly among younger consumers. However, you must be careful to provide concrete tips and tricks that are based in fact, rather than urban legends. Moreover, your blog post should show your creativity and provide the reader with something free. Finally, make sure you promote your blog posts. This improves your blog’s visibility and ensures that readers can easily find your content.