By Courtney Rosenfeld, Contributing Author, founder of Gigspark.biz
Ecopreneurship is not brand new, but it has definitely gained momentum in recent years. Along with rising awareness of climate change, pollution, and other environmental issues, there are more resources than ever before available to eco-conscious entrepreneurs. If you’re interested in becoming an ecopreneur, check out these 12 tips and resources from Inside Fashion Design.
The Basics of Ecopreneurship
You’re interested in ecopreneurship, but if you’re still not 100 percent sure what it is or if it’s right for you, consider these essential elements of what it means to be an ecopreneur so that you can better determine if it coincides with your passions and skill set:
Ecopreneurship is a type of entrepreneurship, meaning that you must maintain a profit in order to keep promoting initiatives and practices that are healthy for the planet. Check out the links included with each of the below:
Ecopreneurs maintain a focus on prevalent environmental issues, including climate change, pollution, and waste.
There are many well-known green businesses that have stayed true to their focus on sustainability, including Seventh Generation, IKEA, and Unilever for example.
Running an earth-friendly business means that you consider the environment in every aspect of your operations—from the products or services you provide to the marketing materials you use.
Preparing to Launch
After identifying a viable idea, put it into a business plan and explore your funding options.
Brainstorm business ideas that can both benefit the planet and bring a profit. "We are firm believers of the idea that addressing the climate crisis and pursuing other sustainable initiatives is a win-win situation for businesses. Aside from the increased brand loyalty that accrues from aligning with activist values, climate change is poised to cost businesses an estimated €85 billion in the next five years.": 21 SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS IDEAS FOR 2021
Get connected with groups and organizations that can help you build a strong foundation for success, such as the Green Business Network.
If you don’t have enough space in your home for a workspace, look into office sharing, or working with a friend. If you are in the market for a new house, see how much you can afford (online tools can help), and work with a real estate agent to help you find what you need. Working from home is a viable option these days and you can claim tax deductions for running your business from a home office.
Promoting your business
Even if you have a great product or service that benefits the environment, your company can’t thrive unless people know about it. Here are a few marketing tips:
Make sure you have a top-notch website that engages users and clearly represents your brand. "As early as 2016, the IT sector was responsible for approximately 7 percent of global electricity use. This is due to the technology used to power and access the web as well as the sheer and growing number of people who do so." 6 Ways to Create a More Eco-Friendly Website (Design, Hosting & More)
Throw a lot of energy into social media marketing, as it’s currently the biggest overall platform for nonprofits and small businesses. Check out Top 10 Social Media Tactics for Promoting Your Brand for Free at www.zenmedia.com
"Local SEO, also known as Map SEO, is a relatively new form of SEO that has gained momentum over the past few years. It uses links and keywords to optimize your Google My Business (GMB) profile." Learn more here
Make sure all of your print marketing is made from sustainable materials like recycled paper. "In a world where everything is digital, receiving something at home in the paper can make a big impact. It’s a cost-effective way to drive action and reach family members, who often are the ones making the benefits decisions. But a lot of organizations believe that mailing paper materials is inconsistent with their efforts to go green. Can you be green and still get the benefits of direct mail and other paper channels? We think so." The Environmentally Friendly Way to Do Print, from segalbenz.com
Now is as good a time as any to launch an earth-friendly business. If you feel the nudge to become an ecopreneur, consider the tips and resources above as you prepare your path. And keep researching how you can position your company for long-term success!