Earth Hour takes place this Saturday, March 27 between 8:30 and 9:30 p.m. wherever you are in the world. Founded in 2007 as a light-off event in Sydney, Australia, Earth Hour is now a worldwide movement, headed up by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF). The event encourages everyone to turn off all of their non-essential electric lights during that one hour span. The idea, of course, is to preserve energy, but also to bring greater awareness to the issue of climate change.
Generally, Earth Hour involves public candle-lighting gatherings among other events. However, because of the ongoing pandemic, the Earth Hour global team is recommending that businesses organize online/virtual events instead. “If you are still considering organizing an on-ground/physical event, please only do so if local guidelines allow and ensure that all participants wear a mask and maintain social distancing at all times,” urges the Earth Hour website.
What can businesses do to acknowledge Earth Hour?
Our first recommendation would be to advertise that you are observing it. Utilize your social media profiles to communicate that your business encourages its friends, followers and customers to switch off their lights for an hour this Saturday at 8:30 p.m. In many cases – and this is one of them – your most effective form of advertising isn’t to advertise your products and services at all. Your stance on global issues like climate change makes a huge statement about your brand. It isn’t likely to go unnoticed by a large section of the public.
Among their ideas for businesses, the Earth Hour global team recommends that you take part in their first-ever Virtual Spotlight. “On the night of Earth Hour, we’ll be posting a must-watch video on all our social media pages – and all you have to do is share it,” their website informs, “Share it to your Stories or to your wall, DM it, re-Tweet it, @tag others in the comments, send it via email to all your employees – the choice is yours!”
Create your own Earth Hour event!
Naturally, it’s important to practice what you preach. So, as the Earth Hour site instructs, switch off all of your non-essential lights in your buildings, facilities and signage during Earth Hour from 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. “For offices that are closed over the weekends ensure your employees switch off lights when they leave on Friday evening,” the site offers as a reminder.
It goes on to recommend that you create your own Earth Hour event. Through your social media accounts, you have the ability to live stream your own participation in Earth Hour. The live stream will double as a celebration of our planet and an excellent opportunity to promote your brand.
Run special sustainable offerings and promotions on the night of Earth Hour!
This recommendation comes directly from the Earth Hour website: “Own a restaurant? Create a special sustainable menu with plant-based foods! Own a store? Showcase your most environmentally friendly products! Own a coffee shop? Give discounts for people who bring their own reusable cups!”
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