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B2B insights

Marketing & Sustainability: How & Why to Drive Change

Sustainable B2B marketing

B2B Marketing’s Lucy Gillman sat down with Delta Capita’s CMO Leeya Hendricks. Leeya discusses the sustainable measures Delta Capita are taking and how marketing can respond to increasing customer expectations for greener approaches to marketing.

LG: To kick off the interview, what is your background in B2B marketing and what does your current role involve?

I am a B2B marketer with over 15 years of marketing, communications and sales experience from small, fast-growing firms to multinationals. I have worked in the financial services, technology and management consulting industries, for companies such as Oracle, IBM, Accenture and Gartner in global, US, EMEA and APAC roles.

As global CMO of Delta Capita, I lead marketing strategy across international markets, through impactful, revenue-generating initiatives. I am responsible for scaling channels to generate demand and working with the board to grow the business globally. I drive and manage two strategies as I am also CMO for Prytek, our parent company. Delta Capita is Prytek’s financial services division.

LG: What steps are Delta Capita taking to drive sustainable business practices, particularly from a marketing perspective?

We are committed to responsible business practices that benefit our people, clients, communities and planet.

This commitment sits at the core of our values, which inform how we work with our people and across our ecosystem. We partner with our clients and with EcoVadis, one of the world’s most trusted sustainability ratings providers, to continually assess and improve on all aspects of sustainability. These aspects include the environment, ethics, human rights and procurement.

Our marketing builds trust by expressing our brand in a way that connects with our customers’ needs and reflects our culture.

LG: How can you embed sustainable attitudes throughout your organisation, especially in a large enterprise like Delta Capita?

We must ensure sustainability isn’t just something our marketing team comes up with, but that it lives and breathes throughout our ecosystem. We do this through strong executive sponsorship and active global colleague networks who create and embed actions that drive sustainability.

Delta Capita has zero tolerance of slavery and human trafficking in any part of our business or supply chain. We are reviewing our suppliers to ensure fair treatment of employees.
We acknowledge that climate change is a crisis. Embedding environmental sustainability into our commercial goals ensures continued growth and success in future.
We have implemented a hybrid working model that allows our people to work remotely. This significantly reduces our ‘scope three’ emissions, which include all direct and indirect CO2 emissions in our value chain.

We commit to a ‘net positive’ mindset across all our strategies. This means taking CO2 out of the atmosphere to help repair and regenerate our planet. We are also reviewing our supply chain to ensure sustainable product sourcing and are developing a consulting proposition around that. Under the ethics bracket, we initiate community projects, sponsor charities, and have a give-as-you-earn programme. We also strongly promote diversity and inclusion and have developed a network of colleagues with different nationalities, backgrounds, and experiences to make sure we keep progressing our diversity and inclusion goals.

LG: The pandemic has caused us to pause, to take stock about what values and issues really matter to us. Where does sustainability come into this? Should marketers focus more on sustainability when attracting and retaining customers?

Yes. Our clients increasingly demand that we outline our sustainability practices and policies clearly. Clients want to see our EcoVadis scores as part of our competitive bidding. Marketing’s role is to ensure that we are sharing our story authentically, building trust with our clients and aligning our purpose, values and goals. Being a purpose-driven organisation is not just the right thing to do. It will create long-term value for all our stakeholders, including clients.

Also, our suppliers are integral to our business, and we encourage them to embrace our values and focus on sustainability practices. Procurement is one focus of our sustainability working group and it aims to implement policies and business practices to achieve vital green economy goals.

Ensuring Delta Capita and our suppliers have the right sustainability processes improves the experience for customers as they engage with the various touch points. This is a key aspect of marketing and enables us to attract and retain clients.

LG: Looking further into the future, Gen Z are soon to become an employee/customer base. It’s no secret that younger generations are more inclined towards greener approaches. How can marketing respond as these generations become employees and customers?

Most of Gen Z – currently aged between 9 and 24 – are willing to spend more on sustainable products. Many approaches resonate with them from sustainable materials sourcing to recycling and re-use initiatives.

Many businesses, including Delta Capita, have responded by turning to recommerce models. These can align quickly with consumers’ interest in reducing waste, while cutting costs of new items. A simple example is refilling stainless steel water bottles at home and in the office. Research shows this strategy can have real traction, particularly with younger generations.

LG: Can customers see when organisations are just using sustainability as a marketing slogan rather than truly living it? How can you keep your message authentic and true?

Focusing on moral purpose at the core is key. Our employees’ values are aligned with ensuring our activities are as sustainable as possible.

Last year, we brought all our sustainability efforts under one umbrella and introduced our internal global sustainability working group which meets regularly to review and challenge our practices from within. This is guided by our EcoVadis Silver status, which places Delta Capita in the top 25% of all companies on sustainability. We remain committed to improving our rating.

For marketers, the best thing to do is communicate your sustainability goals in a clear, relatable and jargon free way. Don’t be shy. Tell your story, and people will listen.

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