Achieving great things together – this is Heiko Stute’s motto. He is one of the brains behind major marketing campaigns at Spreadshirt–Create Your Own, such as ”Love Week“ or ”Know Your Power“. When he was still a student of applied media and communication sciences, he had an internship placement at Spreadshirt’s marketing department. Now he is responsible for the brand’s sponsorship partnerships, while also managing marketing campaigns. His enthusiasm for strong cooperation received a further boost when the Fridays For Future activists took to the street. It is impressive what fellow campaigners can achieve if they work on a mutual goal together.
Spread Group: How do you define sustainability?
Heiko Stute: The efficient use of resources is vital to me. That’s also what I particularly like about my work at Spreadshirt–Create Your Own. We only print what customers need – when they need it. That’s why we don’t need to participate in the clearance-sale madness, which is ultimately just a way to get rid of overproduction. I find the cradle-to-cradle approach particularly exciting. We rethink products in cycles and leave no waste behind. For the traditional textile industry that would mean a 180-degree turnaround. They pursue the exact opposite approach with their cradle-to-grave dynamics.
Spread Group: What motivates you to live a more sustainable lifestyle?
Heiko Stute: My curiosity. I try to stick to the cradle-to-cradle approach when I cook, which means not wasting any of the food I buy by putting leftovers to a good use the next day. As a fan of cycling, it is also not difficult for me to leave my car in the garage if I don’t need to travel long distances. It’s a bonus for my health as well. And then I use tote jute bags for my shopping, which look great when adorned with out designs from Spreadshirt’s Customize Tool.
Spread Group: What sustainability projects have you and your team already implemented?
Heiko Stute: We are currently dealing with the environmental and social aspects of corporate social responsibility. Our Christmas flyers will be made of recycled paper for the first time, and we will pay a voluntary compensation sum for this campaign. The flyers should remain the exception in our communication, as we can communicate with customers faster and more resource-efficiently via our social media channels or our newsletters.
My area of responsibility also includes all sponsorship activities of the Spreadshirt brand. This means that I am the contact person for all inquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org. We receive a large number of very exciting sponsorship requests every month. We hand out sponsorship packages with personalized clothing for cultural, sporting, or social events. It is important for me to understand the background behind each project. Who are the recipients of the sponsorship packages? What makes the project worth supporting? And what are their expectations in terms of quantity, type, and appearance of the products?
For example, we recently supported Haba Code Week with 35 T-shirts, as we are very impressed by their commitment. As an e-commerce group, we know how important digital skills and a solid understanding of technology are for today’s work. We can’t start promoting these skills soon enough. Our next project will be with the famous Thomas School in Leipzig to mark the start of the year. We’ll be handing out around personalized T-shirts to 80 fifth graders.
Spread Group: What specific sustainability goals have you set?
Heiko Stute: By 2022, we want to double the number of organic products in our range and significantly improve their visibility. Our customers should be able to see which factors make our product sustainable. Before Christmas, Spreadshirt–Create Your Own traditionally offers many promotions, and we will highlight our sustainable products even more this year. This way, customers can test our organic products at discounted prices.
Spread Group: What do you recommend to all readers who would like to delve further into the topic of “sustainability”?
Heiko Stute: Question your own daily actions first, and then improve upon your unsustainable actions. Then identify a topic for an even more sustainable lifestyle and work on achieving it.
• Corporate Social Responsibility at Spread Group: www.spreadgroup.com/sustainability