The first of its kind ”green screen” project was launched on M6 on 5 June 2021, World Environment Day. Frédérique Refalo, Deputy General Director in charge of Sales Development at M6 Publicité sheds light on the development process and the collaboration between M6, Mediaplus and ClimatePartner.
How was this Green Screen project developed and what is it?
The idea was born at a meeting with Mediaplus where plans to dedicate a specific display to their advertising clients were discussed. Initially, there was no concept or theme. A project led by Mediaplus in Germany allowing advertisers to offset their Carbon emissions using the principle of Green GRP was our inspiration. For the first time in France, if not the entire world, advertisers were able to publish a completely carbon-neutral advert. Mediaplus took the role of inviting their clients to take part in the project, whilst M6 Publicité had the responsibility for making their audiences aware that they were watching something unique and the reasons for it.
Beyond establishing a good reputation for the brand, what were the benefits for the advertising companies?
The focus was on the viewers more than the brands; the project was an attempt to raise awareness of what was happening on their screens amongst the largest proportion of viewers possible. The brands that took part were all Mediaplus clients; Twinings, Urgo, Fromagerie Milleret, Selency, Qonto and DeLonghi. The advertisers donated the costs of the broadcast to the charity ClimatePartner.
Can you explain what Green GPR is?
Green GRP offers clients an opportunity to offset climate emissions created by their campaigns. This system operates in three stages. First, the total costs of the energy and resources that have been used are determined by ClimatePartner’s energy calculator and adjusted according to local energy costs. Next, ClimatePartner calculates the economic cost of the carbon offset and organises a donation to a certified ecological charity, chosen by the client. Finally, the advertiser is awarded a certificate attesting to a carbon-neutral campaign and becomes a recognised partner of the charity ClimatePartner.
Was the Green GPR project an isolated event in association of World Environment Day or will it become a long-term change at M6?
The Green GPR is a project primarily led by Mediaplus. For the moment, it was a one-off event but that’s not to say that it will not be repeated. The M6 Group is committed through a wide series of actions to answering social and environmental issues.
Following the enthusiasm and interest of our audience, we have set up a second “Green Week” on the Groupe M6’s channels. From January 24 to 31, 2021, the Group’s branches (M6, W9, 6ter, Téva, Gulli, RTL, 6play, etc.), each with its own tone and its own editorial line, offered more than 60 hours of information and magazine programmes, cinema and entertainment related to ecology and the environment. The commitment of the Groupe M6 continued beyond this themed week, and more than 1,300 programmes on these subjects aired in 2021.
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Sustainability is a hot topic right now. What is the role of the advertising industry in helping generate a more ecologically conscious future and how can it be a player in this change?
Environmentalists often target the advertising industry as one of the biggest contributors to the ecological crisis and problems of overconsumption. However, a world without media and advertising is not only difficult to imagine, but also unrealistic, especially when considering the role it could play in raising awareness of the solutions among consumers. As with all other industries, advertising must reconsider its impact on the environment. Every sector of the industry, from the client to the broadcaster, must take responsibility for their polluting habits and make changes from within. Green Week raises awareness of new approaches and solutions. Similarly, a Sustainable Development Fair has been running for four years now, giving brands the opportunity to better understand issues of corporate social responsibility and gain the knowledge about how to implement it. Changes have already begun to be made and it is now a case of continuing along the same path.
What are the next steps following this project?
M6 is not new to this type of project – the issue of sustainability has been a key focal point for the last couple of years at the company. We support our advertising partners and media agencies on these topics by providing a range of offers and services but also, as in the case of the Green GRP, by keeping the conversation going on these issues. It allows us to be able to innovate and jump on opportunities when we see them. Future plans involve keeping up the momentum and maintaining the conversation with our engaged partners such as Mediaplus.