The UK’s Fashion industry is worth £59.3 billion and is increasing year on year, currently contributing over 800,000 jobs to the UK’s economy. Due to the emergence of fast fashion, which has accelerated fashion consumption whilst evoking limited consumer purchasing emotion, as a result of the decreased cost of garments. Giving consumers fewer incentives to recycle. Research from the House of Commons Environmental Audit states that 17% of young people wouldn’t wear an outfit again if they had already posted a picture wearing it on social media. Around 300,000 tonnes of clothes in the UK, end up either in landfill or incineration each year.
Globally, textile production emits 1.2billion tonnes of greenhouse gas annually, which equates to more than international flights and maritime shipping combined. This is becoming an increasing problem, which retailers have to tackle; however, many consumers still remain unaware of the impact the fashion industry has on the economy and the environment.
The ethical clothing industry in the UK is worth £50 million and is increasing year on year, as fashion retailers are under immense pressure to become more adaptable, incorporating sustainability into their business models. Including pressure from the government and activist groups, such as ‘labour behind the label’ and anti-fur movements to minimise the production of fast fashion, sweatshops and animal cruelty in fashion. Research suggests that 52% of consumers in the UK want the fashion industry to be more sustainable. Brands including Burberry, Gap, H&M and Levi’s have pledged to be more sustainable in their practices. As a result of this increased pressure from stakeholders, retailers and brands are adopting green marketing strategies in response to demand.
Green marketing is a relatively new entity with only a small number of UK retailers adopting these techniques, however, it is rapidly expanding. With sustainability becoming a ‘mega trend’ organisations are beginning to use buzz words such as ‘eco’ and ‘green’ in their marketing communications, and marketing their products based on its environmental benefits.
Advertising campaigns have become increasingly important for companies to seek ‘ethical credentials’ as a business strategy not only with the aim of profit maximisation but long-term sustainability.
Many companies are accused of greenwashing – the idea that companies make customers believe they are doing more than they actually are, resulting in only 10% of consumers trusting the information they receive from the retailers suggesting that in some instances ‘sustainability’ is used as a buzzword to generate profits. With consumers unable to identify sustainable fashion retailers, therefore there is a requirement for increased ‘signposting ‘and clear labelling to be used a key marketing tool with 95% of consumer decision making occurring at the point of sale. Evian, although not in the fashion industry have recently scrapped the use of labels on their bottles, this allows the whole product to be recycled.
Here at Wish, we are aware of consumer demands and the importance of positive customer experience. If you’ve recently adapted your business strategy to become more sustainable and need help implementing green marketing throughout your business, we can provide support for both online and offline channels.