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ADAPTING TO NEW MARKET LANDSCAPE KEY FOR KIMBERLY-CLARK

Mitch Faigan
Mitch Faigan, president of Citizen Brand and Kimberly-Clark consultant

Changing consumer patterns, fuelled by fragmented media, greater product choice and lifestyle changes, combined with environmental and social changes are keeping marketers on their toes. Companies that can adapt to this new landscape the fastest will be the ones that win.

That’s the word from Mitch Faigan, president of Citizen Brand and Kimberly-Clark consultant, who was in South Africa recently to attend the 2010 Brands and Branding for Good Conference. Faigan says Kimberly-Clark has been around for more than 130 years and recognises the need to adapt.

“We want to ensure our brands deliver against these new demands in a meaningful way. We have developed business and marketing processes that incorporate a new way of approaching integrated marketing planning, but also sustainability charters that ensure we are responsible contributors to the social societies and environments in which we operate,” says Faigan.

Faigan says Kimberly-Clark is aware that green washing is a growing concern for consumers and customers. “Kimberly-Clark takes this seriously and realises the importance of accuracy in its environmental messaging. The company is committed to providing accurate information in its product labeling and communications that can be thoroughly substantiated. This commitment ties to its value of authenticity and heritage of doing the right thing for its customers and consumers,” he says.

In this respect, Kimberly-Clark has a rigorous internal claims substantiation process that its teams must follow before making marketing claims. With regard to environmental or “green” claims, its legal department has published internal guidelines that comply with the existing Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) Green Guides as to the types of claims that Kimberly-Clark businesses may make about its products or processes. “We expect to update our internal Environmental Marketing Guidelines when FTC announces its anticipated new policy,” says Faigan.

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