As customer demand for low carbon goods and services is rising, it is becoming increasingly important for suppliers to demonstrate their low carbon footprint.
Businesses aiming to reduce their emissions to meet the government’s plan of net zero by 2050, are seeking innovative methods to improve their sustainability practices.
Many West Midlands companies are planning/have taken action to reduce their environmental impact, with expectation of cost savings (54%), competitive advantage (42%), differentiation (29%) and increased customer demand (28%).
There are many ways a business can become more sustainable, from adopting eco-friendly initiatives in its production and delivery processes, such as reducing energy use and waste, to reviewing its procurement activities and the emissions of its supply chain.
More and more organisations considering their impact on society and the environment, are aiming to be part of the circular economy and engage in sustainable business partnerships.
By working with companies sharing the same values and ideals, businesses can not only themselves become more sustainable, but work together to find new ways and initiatives for future ethical and environmental practices.
Luther Marketing Group Ltd. is a Walsall based business-to-business (B2B) direct marketing company. Based upon a strong ethical foundation, the group has always made sustainability a central part of their identity, and are looking to further develop this by establishing an ethical and environmentally conscious online platform, The Inclusion Post, promoting businesses sharing the same fundamental values and ideas.
The Inclusion Post covers a range of sustainable and inclusive news, from showcasing businesses believing in social inclusion and environmental sustainability, highlighting individuals on their inclusion journeys, along with articles offering positive discussion and awareness.
Luther Marketing Group are looking to expand and develop their knowledge in the area of sustainability, and identify an entity who can support them to help their clients with sustainability related challenges.
Luther Marketing Group Ltd. was founded by Michael Melhado in 2017. With a long, successful career in marketing and delivering campaigns for a number of large IT companies, Michael decided to create his own marketing business that echoed his social and ethical values, leading to the creation of the Luther Marketing Group.
Based in the West Midlands, Luther Marketing Group offers a range of telemarketing, data and consultancy services. They are passionate about people and the communities they live in, supporting the business’ strong ethical foundation.
Pre-Covid-19, Luther Marketing Group would organise face-to-face meetings for their clients with their new business prospects. Since such meetings could no longer take place, Luther Marketing Group evaluated the services they offered during this time and looked for ways to broaden their portfolio.
They wanted to change the focus on the companies they work and engage with, seeking to promote business between companies who share the same values around sustainability. This led to the development of ‘The Inclusion Post’, a new online platform that focuses on both inclusion and sustainability.
The group also offers a new area of digital marketing services, and plans to reach out to more companies who are interested in ethical and environmental matters.
Michael chanced upon the Energy & Bioproducts Research Institute (EBRI) at Aston University, when contacting local universities with opportunities for internships at Luther Marketing Group. After liaising with the business support team at EBRI, this led to an opportunity for the Luther Marketing Group to receive a virtual consultation with EBRI’s team of scientists and business advisors on how EBRI can aid the West Midlands company with sustainability knowledge and practices to enhance its business strategy and marketing plans.
Support from EBRI
Help to identify new market opportunities
The EBRI team, as part of its support to industry, is running exclusive one-to-one sustainability health checks and low carbon challenge surgeries for business decision makers and entrepreneurs. These may be aimed at solving a particular issue that a company has, to give advice on new market opportunities, or to suggest new activities that will increase the operation’s sustainability.
Following an online consultation, EBRI were able to provide Luther Marketing Group with a report detailing recommendations on how they can enhance their business to be more sustainability-savvy and provide similar valuable advice to their client base.
Historically, Luther Marketing Group has targeted businesses within the IT, logistics and material handling sectors. Increasingly these industries are under growing pressure to improve their green credentials and reduce their carbon emissions. The IT industry, for example, is one of the largest consumers of electricity, particularly for the power and cooling of data centres. One of the strains on the logistics industry is increased consumer demand for fast delivery and this requirement is making it even more important for companies to consider the environmental impacts of heightened speed.
Sustainable material handling processes in industrial environments, including warehouses is becoming crucially important, as more and more companies are seeking to adopt innovative ways to recycle and reuse products, eco-friendly packaging, and energy saving practices.
Luther Marketing Group currently offers marketing health checks to their clients, and after identifying that EBRI conducts similar health checks with regards to sustainability, Michael saw this as an opportunity to work together. Luther Marketing Group’s philosophy is to support small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and attract new customers with a broad range of services. Therefore, when conducting their marketing health checks, they can also advise their clients on the steps they need to take on the path to net zero.
EBRI looked at various ways to help Luther Marketing Group with its mission of embracing sustainability into its business model and communication strategy. For example, the team provided an overview of sustainability practices followed by a wide range of industry sectors connected to the circular economy, which could help not only the company, but with discussions with their clients too.
These case studies included sensor manufacturers, brewers, hydroponic specialists, plastic manufacturers and those connected to the waste management industry, including food waste and redundant car and bicycle tyres.
These real-life examples enabled EBRI to demonstrate the benefits of companies being part of the circular economy which strives to minimise resource input, waste and emission production, as well as maximise efficiency in the use of finite resources, the gradual transition to renewable resources, and the recovery of materials and products at the end of their use.
“The report provided by EBRI following our consultation was fantastic and very informative. We are now putting sustainability at the heart of our corporate mission and the guidance we have received will help us and other companies we work with achieve this.”
Founder, Luther Marketing Group Ltd.
Following on from EBRI’s online consultation and recommendation report, Michael is proactively and confidently engaging in new discussions with his client base and prospects, regarding the importance of sustainability in everyday business practice.
EBRI’s guidance and in-depth case study overview has enabled Luther Marketing Group to raise awareness of how by taking action to reduce its environmental impact, a company can not only save money, it can differentiate itself from its competitors and increase demand for its products and services.
Equipped with this new knowledge, Michael and his team are now looking to expand their client base and attract new clients from not only the IT, logistics and material handling sectors and their associated supply chains, but from other industry sectors too who share an interest in inclusion and sustainability. In addition, EBRI’s guidance has helped the company achieve their goal of engaging with other businesses sharing their values, and therefore becoming a more sustainable business themselves.
The EBRI team also provided Michael with useful information regarding additional business support programmes and student placement schemes available at Aston University. These could help enable his company to expand in the future, as they connect with more and more business decision makers seeking to meet their sustainability goals on the path to net zero.
“EBRI has been great to work with, and it has been very refreshing to work with an organisation who strives and works hard to build a better society and a healthier planet.”
Founder, Luther Marketing Group Ltd.
 British Chambers of Commerce (2020) Net Zero Survey 2020 West Midlands