I recently sat down with EarthHero’s founder and CEO, Ryan Lewis, to learn how his company is bringing sustainability to the corporate gifting space. What inspired this move, what challenges they’ve faced so far, notable accomplishments, and what’s on the horizon are the topics we explored. Let’s see what Ryan had to say.
“What made you decide to pivot to include corporate gifting?”
EarthHero started as a consumer-driven marketplace. We were 100% focused on sourcing the most sustainable, high-quality products and brands to help consumers live and shop more sustainably. What happened next was interesting. Some of our best customers started requesting that we use these same products, but asked if we could brand them with the logo of the company they worked for or owned. As a business owner and entrepreneur, I always try to listen closely to the market and adapt. As we began getting more and more of these requests, we learned that companies all over are struggling to find sustainable products to customize for their SWAG, promotional products, or customer and employee appreciation gifts. So, we decided that helping companies gift sustainably was a great way to expand our reach, accelerate our positive environmental impact, and address a growing market that needs our help.
"What were some of the hurdles or challenges you've found?"
Entering a new market has its challenges. First, we needed to learn what was most important to our new corporate customers. What were their pain points? How could EarthHero help them in ways others could not? How do we price our services?
While we were able to figure out the market conditions rather quickly, some of the more difficult challenges were adapting our internal culture and business model to ensure we were putting the necessary attention, workload, marketing, and business development resources in place. All of this while continuing to grow our consumer business as well. To pull this off operationally, it truly took the entire team to ideate, plan, and build systems to be able to service both sides of our business at the highest levels.
"What has been the biggest accomplishment so far?"
Having helped some of the largest and most recognized brands make the shift to sustainable SWAG has truly been inspiring. I am proud that we are helping a wide variety of industries, from tech, financial services, and pharmaceuticals, to utilities, municipalities, and real estate. My hope is that all companies will soon source their promotional products responsibly.
"Where do you see EarthHero Corporate Gifting going?"
We are currently investing in a specialized website for all of our Corporate Gifting customers. This will be a place where the world's best product catalog will live, alongside all the information needed to customize, bundle, and organize a project and order successfully.
Our vision is to serve all companies who want to source beautiful, high-quality, eco-friendly products, and allow them to be confident they are gifting the right way. From the product to the packaging to the end of life for each product, shopping at EarthHero provides companies with the most sustainable gifting experience possible. In addition, every EarthHero order has a donation to an environmental non-profit of their choice included as well.
Corporate/promotional gifting is a 200+ billion-dollar industry. Sadly, most of those gifts are unwanted and end up in our landfills. EarthHero believes a company can tell a meaningful story through sustainable gifting and demonstrate its commitment to the environment and to its customers and clients. If you or your company need help envisioning the perfect and meaningful gift that is environmentally friendly, socially responsible, and ethically sourced, reach out to our corporate gifting team today!