SBJ/20090921/SBJ In-Depth

Do’s and Don’ts of Going Green

Helios Partners, a sports marketing agency based in Atlanta, launched the Helios Sports Sustainability Partnership in July to help connect sports properties, sponsors and event companies that want to reduce their impact on the environment. Kevin Donovan, vice president of Helios Partners, offers these tips for green initiatives:

DO

Be credible. Whatever you’re doing, it needs to be for more than show.

Engage through participation. Give sponsors, consumers and fans an opportunity to be a part of the solution.

Educate. Tell people something they don’t know. It doesn’t have to be scary. Ideally, it is something that connects their positive behavior with positive outcomes.

Differentiate. Innovative programs deliver multiple benefits and set you apart from your competitors.

Tap into the environmental social network to promote your activities. Environmental bloggers recognize authentic commitment and will share that with others.

DON’T

“Greenwash.” Engage in the appearance of environmental preservation at the expense of meaningful action.

Overdo it in the promotional sense. That one recycling bin is not going to save the polar ice caps.

Bite off more than you can chew. Sustainability goals can’t be achieved overnight.

Undermine your progress. For example, don’t promote your green initiatives with tons of paper collateral.

Stop. What is a green initiative today should be a standard practice tomorrow.

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