Planting the future with GDCC

Posted by Tyler Vawser on Jan 5th, 2016

  • About Green Dream Clothing Co.: A lifestyle brand that plants a tree for every article of clothing sold, Green Dream is "bridging the gap between inner city and country club lifestyles."

  • How they use stickers: Stickers are used to promote the brand, be sold online, and for student ambassadors to get the word out on college campuses. Stickers are also used in packaging and on boxes.

  • Results: Stickers have been an easy, cost effective way to do marketing and promote the vision. The stickers have been effective on college campuses (like CU Boulder) and allow millennials to engage with the brand in a meaningful way.

College graduates often grapple with the seemingly binary decision to either "do good or make cash." A 2014 graduate from Indiana University at Bloomington, Adam Swartz has chosen his own path: doing good by launching a lifestyle brand that is as cool as it is eco-centered.

With a slick logo, cool tees and strapback hats, the style of Green Dream speaks for itself. Beneath the look, the upstart brand and vision is far bigger: a greener future.

Green Dream clothing company uses custom stickers to promote their brand

When I chat with Adam on the phone for the first time to talk about how he uses stickers in his business, it's clear that he's passionate about that vision — and he's rooted it in thoughtful intentionality.

"My generation is interested in causes that matter — we're into a better environment. It's not an afterthought or an added bonus— we all care about the environment deeply from the start."

For every article of clothing (or pack of stickers) sold a tree is planted. Green Dream partnered with Plant-it 2020, a nonprofit foundation that performs worldwide tree-planting and more, to make it happen. "It's easy to latch onto the GDCC brand ‘cause there is a genuine interest in a sustainable future.

How to use stickers to promote your brand in public

On the business side, Adam is getting the word out about Green Dream using branded custom stickers.

It's a cheaper way to do marketing and promote the message.

After graduating, he moved from Indiana to the eco-friendly and all around great city of Boulder home of CU Boulder -- Colorado's largest college campus. He's found college students to be great ambassadors for the brand and spreading the message.

Students know the stickers — they've seen them around.

Adam's student ambassadors or his "The Street Team" carry stickers with them around campus at all times. "It's a cheaper way to do marketing and promote the message." They'll give away free stickers to students who proudly stick them on their laptop, phone, or cars — anywhere that is seen every day by others.

"The street team always gets great feedback. Students know the stickers — they've seen them around. When someone says, ‘Ah, I love that sticker' an ambassador can give them one right then and there."

The stickers vary from pure marketing to promoting green messages ("Plant Trees") to inspirational words ("Good Vibes Only" and "Dream Louder").

Every sticker features Green Dream's memorable logo, an upside down umbrella — which is full of its own meaning, "Unlike an umbrella that blocks out rain, wind, or hail, our umbrella is flipped upside down allowing for these experiences and thoughts to fall in and help shape who we are, what we dream of, and where we dream of going."

Beyond the street team and word of mouth marketing, Adam's logo stickers are an important part of the customer experience. In keeping with his eco-centric and sustainable mission, old boxes are reused and given a new look with die cut stickers fixed on the outside. And after they've opened their box, inside they'll find a Plant Trees sticker Adam used to secure the tissue wrapping paper.

Use stickers to to close wrapping paper

After that package is received, the stickers frequently are spotted on social media, on street signs around the country.

"Friends are always sending me pictures whether it be from London or my old college campus. The support is real."

Stickers have also been a product in and of themselves. Every sticker pack sold also plants a tree — and seeds for the brand to continue to grow.

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