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Media Decarbonisation Will Soon Be a ‘Commercial Imperative’

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Media’s carbon footprint is larger than most marketers might expect, and it’s an issue they will have to address sooner rather than later.

Why it matters

Media-based decarbonisation is going to become a hygiene factor as questions are asked about the advertising industry’s energy use as well as the behaviours it drives. “If you want to prioritise having a career in marketing and advertising in the next six years, you have to get your head around sustainability because it is going to change our industry,” said Essence Mediacom’s Laura Wade, speaking at Advertising Week Europe.

Takeaways 

  • A focus on the sustainability of the physical supply chain will be supplemented by scrutiny of the more ephemeral nature of digital advertising. The programmatic ecosystem is hugely inefficient when viewed through a sustainability lens, Wade pointed out.
  • Many businesses aren’t currently measuring the impact of their media choices. Science-based targets will need to become part of agency objectives.
  • There is significant scope for advertisers to reduce their carbon footprint while increasing efficiency by simply shifting the budget away from high-carbon, low-performing sites. MPB, a platform for buying and selling camera equipment, realised a 4x increase in conversion rate by doing this.

Key quote

“I feel like everyone’s dabbling at the moment … but in about a year’s time we’re going to have benchmarks, we’ll know what good looks like and I think we’re going to see investment start moving … there’s a load of stats out there to show that this is going to be a commercial imperative” – Laura Wade, Global Head of Sustainability Strategy at Essence Mediacom.

Credit: WARC

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