In the UK, it is predicted that we will each spend an average of £189 over Black Friday weekend. With Black Friday being one of the biggest shopping days of the year, of course, many small businesses want a piece of the Black Friday pie. But with a focus on rock-bottom prices and impulse purchases, at a time when overconsumption is one of the biggest issues facing our planet, Black Friday promotions can often be seen as anything but ethical. Enter Green Friday, the eco alternative to the Cyber Weekend madness.
Black Friday Vs Green Friday: What is Green Friday?
Green Friday challenges the fundamentals of consumerism by offering a Cyber Weekend alternative:
Instead of sitting inside online shopping, Green Friday promotes getting active and having fun being out in nature.
Rather than queuing outside your favourite high street shop, Green Friday promotes spending time with friends and family.
Instead of wasting money on impulse purchases you don’t need (and possibly don’t really want), Green Friday promotes giving, sharing and investing in worthwhile causes.
Black Friday encourages overconsumption and impulsive buys which often end up in landfill. Whereas, Green Friday is all about fulfilment and doing something worthwhile, a cause that I’m sure most sustainable businesses would be happy to get behind.
Getting involved in Green Friday as a Sustainable Business
As sustainable businesses, sustainability is at the core of what we do, but we are also a business that needs to make money. With all of the hype around Cyber Weekend, can sustainable businesses cash in on this by running an ethical promotion? In short, I believe that yes, we most definitely can.
A big part of Green Friday is about supporting small businesses (like us), rather than huge corporations. So incorporate this into your messaging! Getting involved in Green Friday as a small business is largely about raising awareness around shopping habits and discouraging senseless waste and spending. As part of your Green Friday campaign, consider putting together a gift guide or social media post promoting your favourite sustainable businesses.
How to run an ethical promotion in November 2022
Green Friday isn’t just for product businesses, both product and service-based businesses can get involved in the Green Friday fun.
Contrary to Black Friday, Green Friday is not about rock-bottom prices, it is about supporting small businesses and making considered purchases. So if you produce high-quality products, don’t feel pressured to plunge prices for Green Friday. Instead, plan a campaign with messaging educating people about Green Friday and why you will be choosing not to run a promotion over Cyber Weekend.
However, if you would like to run a promotion as part of your Green Friday campaign, here are a few ethical promotion ideas:
- Instead of offering shoppers a discount, donate a percentage or a certain amount of sales to an environmental charity.
- Green Friday is all about getting outdoors. Team up with a local initiative such as beach cleans and donate some of your time for every product or service sold.
- Offset the carbon footprint of purchases made on Green Friday by investing in carbon reduction projects, such as planting trees for every order.
Alternatively, instead of running a promotion and discounting a product or service, consider releasing something new as part of your Green Friday campaign. Your new product or service does not have to be reduced in price, instead, you could have only a limited number available. Releasing something new as part of your Green Friday campaign is also a great way to test whether there is demand for a product or service, before incorporating it into your full range.
Running an ethical Green Friday campaign as a small business
Green Friday presents a huge opportunity for small businesses to benefit from the hype of Cyber Weekend, without adding to the overconsumption issue. I hope that this article has given you inspiration for your 2022 Green Friday campaign.
For ideas on how to make your small business more sustainable, download my handy checklist here.