Monetizing sustainability: truth or lie?

Perhaps, we have repeatedly heard talk about sustainability and the benefits that this entails for the environment, society and companies, but how much have we delved into when we approach the actions to monetize sustainability?

This is perhaps a recurring theme at the table in the areas of social responsibility and sustainability of companies, since these should seek that the different actions implemented have the expected triple impact:  financial profitability, generate a positive social and environmental impact.

Although for some it is not clear how to monetize sustainability In companies where a program focused on this is just beginning, it is expected that, in the coming years, most of these (around the world) will achieve the transformation of their business and execute real actions.

With the extensive business opportunities that exist in the different markets and the approach of consumption to shares and responsible companies with the earth's resources and their care, it would be expected that, regardless of size, many of them emerge with sustainability plans in different aspects.

 Despite this, it is becoming evident that many large companies, mostly responsible for the negative impact on the environment, are designing plans that improve the now and the future of resources and humanity, and even when they have more resources, are medium-sized companies are betting on real plans care of the planet, reduction of pollution, protection of resources, etc.

This leads us to investigate that the world needs companies that are successful, that create employment and satisfy a market need, and that at the same time generate value for their different audiences with actions that support sustainability. 

Thus, the question arises: What are the efforts that companies should make in this process of monetizing sustainable actions?

To answer this, it is important to keep in mind that sustainability usually has a triple impact: environmental, social and economic. Where companies have a responsibility would be to create plans, measure them and report them to all entities involved with their companies and the environment. 

Which entails, in turn, that each organization orient various efforts in reducing the levels of impact of its carbon footprint, revealing its maturity in the way in which they mitigate it or stop emitting polluting elements.

Likewise, many companies strive to reduce negative impacts on the environment, focusing its programs on the client, humanity and the actions that they can do for the planet. 

So how are these sustainable actions monetized?

So far, we have only talked a little about the business landscape in this regard, which is extremely important to understand what comes next. Some experts claim that monetizing sustainability is achieved as follows:

  1. Improvement of brand reputation: what implies an increase in sales and how the brand is seen by its audiences.
  2. carbon credits: various governments or entities committed to the environment provide a bonus for sustainable actions.
  3. Tax Reduction: some governments give tax benefits to companies that demonstrate the different results obtained from sustainable actions.
  4. Increase in sales: In addition to improving brand reputation, some customers are willing to pay more when companies focus on sustainable product development.
  5. Opening new markets: abroad or for investor programs, companies are required to demonstrate that they execute sustainable actions, which can translate (in the long term) into higher revenues and profits in a currency other than that of production.
  6. Investors:  sustainable companies have become increasingly attractive to markets and investors, because they tend to be more stable and offer a better vision of future resources.

 According to this, companies can receive economic benefits for their environmental managementHowever, there are others with a high sense of responsibility, who are aware that their biggest gain is to take care of the planet and its resources, which is why they make large investments in this field. 

What is the role of sustainability leaders?

To ensure that the effort of every company is effective, scalable and with a clear focus on the sustainability of now and the future, Leaders must guarantee: the correct reading of the environment, the impact of industrial actions on their businesses and how they affect environmental resources.

In this way, a plan must be designed and implemented that harmonizes its economic activity, its environment, society and ecosystems, prioritizing projects that reduce their environmental impact and measuring the actions carried out.  

This is how it can be ensured that productivity, development, monetization and sustainability are related, since the greater productivity and greater use of resources, there is a greater use of the planet's resources, which leads companies to consider ways in which it is possible to be more profitable, with less social, environmental and economic impact, while working for the growth and sustainability of companies.

According to a recent report presented by the UN, it has been determined that three main pillars that companies can use to support their economic growth, while making their contributions to the environment: design of products with the ability to be circular, the circularity of materials already manufactured for their reuse and the regeneration of natural systems. 

What is the future potential of companies that monetize their sustainable actions?

Being pioneers in sustainability gives you a competitive advantage over the customer, since they are taking care of this and the environment, while satisfying their needs; Hence, companies that monetize sustainability commit (from their DNA) to apply actions based on renewable energies, circular economy, sustainable and regenerative agriculture, sustainable mobility, recycling, etc.

The media, word of mouth and real sustainable actions allow companies that propose sustainable structures for their businesses and products to be closer to the final consumer, strongly influencing brand affection and increased purchases. . 

Is sustainability synonymous with profitability?

Yes, which implies that the greater the sustainability, the greater the income for the companies should be generated, which is measured according to the standards and indicators proposed by each of them and which is demonstrated in the annual sustainability reports, but above all it has a strong impact on communities and the environment. 

In conclusion, beyond the improvement in brand reputation, following a trend where the market and consumers demand real results from sustainable actions or where governments provide benefits to sustainable companies, monetizing sustainability is possible, even when thinking about it in pursuit of caring for people and the planet, while growing financially. 

Do you have a company or product and want to know the status of your sustainable identity as a brand? Enter here and receive a assessment free of charge: Sustainable identity – Planet ( 

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