January 29, 2013

Eco-Friendly Marketing Materials

In trade shows and during sales calls, marketing handouts are just as essential as a calling card. Not only do they attract attention, they also speak volumes about the company and its level of sophistication in one glance. But as the market shifts to environmental awareness, companies now have to balance between aesthetics and eco-sustainability.

Here are three ways you can maximize the visual impact of your marketing materials, while greatly reducing the same on the environment.

1. Use green paper

Not all paper is created equal. While half of the world’s paper supply is still harvested from newly cut trees, an increasing number comes from sustainable methods.

One such source is recycled paper. Many printers now give you green paper options. Green paper will carry a “recycled” logo so your clients or potential clients will know that you care about the environment.

There are different ways the paper can be labeled as green:
  • The paper is harvested from plantations that practice sustainable methods
  • The manufacturing process has a reduced carbon footprint by using energy-saving technologies
  • It can use eco-friendly chemicals, such as renewable ink or chlorine-free treatment
  • Part of the paper may be made from post-consumer recycled fiber. These come from old newsprint, paperboard and corrugated boxes.
2. Use vegetable-based ink

Traditional ink uses oil, which tends to leak volatile organic compounds (VOCs) once the paper has been disposed of.  Blue Hill Press now offers an eco-friendly alternative in the form of vegetable-based ink.

These inks use soy as the main base instead of petroleum. Such inks have dramatically less impact on the environment, and are easily removed. These means they require fewer resources during the recycling process. Soy ink also degrades twice as fast as standard ink materials, and spreads approximately 15% further on paper, reducing ink wastage and printer maintenance costs.
3. Choose water over UV coating

UV coating uses ultra-violet light to cure ink and spread a clear finishing coat. UV coated paper is also much more difficult to recycle than paper waste with laminated or aqueous coating.

Water-based coating (Aqueous coating) is much more eco-friendly. Since it uses water as a primary base, the finished paper is more biodegradable. Marketing materials and direct mailers that uses water based coating is also more durable since it can be applied in a flood process. Aqueous coating also gives you a choice of dull, gloss or satin finish.

For more information on green marketing materials, contact Blue Hill Press.