Your Customers are Demanding it
Demand for sustainable products and services is growing. Consumers want green practices, and they’re willing to pay more to get them. In fact, according to a recent Fortune article, in more than 90% of product categories surveyed, products marketed as green or sustainable showed more growth than their competitors. When your franchise customers see waste, they consider taking their business elsewhere.
For example, I get regular massages from a national massage franchise. Every time I visit, they offer me water in a single-use, plastic bottle. When I refuse, they ask if I’d like to take a bottle with me for the drive home. That’s a wasteful practice that makes me question my choice to go there.
Across all markets, franchises are reducing waste with great success and simultaneously boosting their sustainable public relations efforts. Blaze Pizza made headlines as the first national pizza chain to eliminate straws. It’s the right thing to do, but telling the story through public relations made it a profitable decision as well.
Here are three ways to reduce waste in your franchise system.
1) Reduce Single-Use Plastic
Single-use plastic is a huge source of waste and pollution. Our society is addicted to convenience, but our living planet Earth is paying the price. Each year, we generate about 300 million tons of plastic waste, equivalent to the weight of the entire human population.
Address this problem in your franchise by eliminating plastic and Styrofoam wherever possible. Remember that massage franchise? What if they offered reusable bottles and access to a water cooler instead?
Single-use disposable items made from renewable or compostable materials are available, too. Make the switch franchise-wide and make a splash with your customers.
2) Eliminate Passive Waste
Sometimes, consumers are wasteful because they don’t know what else to do, or because they’re not offered an alternative. Why are disposable items like single-serve condiments and plasticware given by default? Ask customers if they want these items instead of throwing them in with every order.
Offer alternatives to passive waste. Let customers sort waste for recycling and composting. Offer reusable cups, bottles and bags. Your customers will feel good about taking an active role in sustainability, which will translate into good feelings about your franchise system.
3) Examine Your Processes
Restaurants aren’t the only franchises that can reduce waste. Take a look at any resource-consuming process and make adjustments to conserve.
For example, reduce paper by going digital with all communication. Stop printing receipts by default. Fine-tune delivery schedules to reduce trips and waste. These are just a few of the changes that can transform your franchise into a model of sustainability, and they’ll probably save money in consumables, too.
Your customers — and your franchise prospects — want to feel good about their choices. Making sustainability easy is a great way to do it. A green public relations agency like Orange Orchard can tell your waste-free story to maximum effect. If you would like to learn more, call us at (865) 977-1973 or contact Orange Orchard online.