The new model for the business world is impact-based. The lines between “non-profit” and “for-profit” are blurring and market demand has changed. Our ideals of transparency and communication are evolving, and consumers are relating to brands like they do to each other, using goods and services as an outlet for self-expression of not just wealth, but of personal values.
Preserving our way of life, our environment, and our economy for future generations is
fundamentally something that everyone cares about. But with the global market, we have more options than ever and consumers (especially millennials) who care about social and
environmental issues, often can’t find businesses that are taking action towards the things that they care about. Companies who are used to getting questioned on the quality of their items are ever increasingly fielding more questions like “where was this made?”, “how was it made?” and “who made it?” We want to ensure that our purchases have been ethically produced – environmentally, socially or both and are even willing to pay a little bit more if that is the case.
In response to this gap, Sustainable Kingston is ensuring that consumers have access to the information they crave. The new platform sustainably.eco makes it easy to determine which businesses in the area are creating long-term measurable impact towards people and planet. Giving customers power to patronize businesses that are acting in ways that fit into their own value systems. With this information, consumers feel like they are part of the movement and through the insights provided on the site, they can see the measurable impact that they are contributing to.
With climate change and environmental issues in the forefront of all media outlets, sustainable business is definitely on everyone's minds. Consumers have more power than ever to use their combined purchasing power to shift the way that business works. In our opinion, only the most mindful and inventive businesses will be the most successful in the future and will have the potential to drive the biggest societal change.
Kristin Mullin is the Executive Director at Sustainable Kingston. Follow their ventures @sustainablektwn on Twitter.