DMA Asks Marketers to Benchmark Environmental Performance
May 22, 2007 — Recognizing that making environmentally responsible decisions is increasingly important from a social, economic, and business perspective, the Direct Marketing Association’s (DMA) Board of Directors enacted a resolution earlier this month calling on its members to consider the implementation of numerous business practices that are well understood to deliver environmental benefits.
"As a society, we must embrace sustainability as a business concept and objective. For marketers, environmental awareness, profitability, and meeting customer needs aren’t mutually exclusive goals. In fact, they can actually complement one another,” said DMA President & CEO John A. Greco, Jr. “We have a blueprint toward sustainability that can help deliver a profound impact on direct marketing's environmental footprint. We are rallying our diverse membership of companies and nonprofit organizations to consider these practices, and take on the internal planning necessary to achieve these goals.“
During the next year, DMA expects its members to establish internal measurements to benchmark their progress. In June 2008, the DMA Board will establish target goals for marketers in the following key areas and set timetables for measuring success.
- Paper procurement and use
- List hygiene and data management
- Mail design and production
- Recycling and pollution reduction
In its resolution, DMA outlined 15 specific practices within these key areas that marketers should consider — everything from purchasing paper from sustainably managed sources, to keeping mailing lists accurate and up-to-date to reduce waste, to making more environmentally-conscious choices for packaging materials.
DMA’s Committee on the Environment and Social Responsibility evaluated more than 100 environmental practices before deciding upon the 15 recommendations reflected in the DMA Board resolution. A full list of practices is reflected in the recently announced DMA Environmental Planning Tool (http://www.the-dma.org/envgen).
“The scope and complexity of the environmental issues that we face — both as marketers and as a society — are enormously challenging,” said Patricia Kachura, DMA’s senior vice president for ethics and consumer affairs. “I’d like to commend the committee members for their work in creating workable, effective recommendations that companies involved in all aspects of the direct marketing process will be able to embrace.”
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