Create the Future. Today

Taming the clutter of mass-mailing ads

Advertising & Marketing

The average French household receives some 40 kg per year in leaflets and mass mailings, according to Pubeco, a new site that aims to help cut back on that waste. Launched by Sustainable Development Multimedia (DDM) earlier this year, Pubeco invites French consumers to take an eco approach to the problem by refusing to accept any more print advertising. But rather than simply opting out of all ads in general—80 percent of which are actually appreciated by their recipients, the site says—Pubeco encourages users to view those of local relevance to them online, and it publishes advertisers’ paid communications on the site for that purpose. Users begin by ordering a free sticker for their mailbox that reads: “No leaflet, thank you—I’m watching them on the Internet.” Using their postal code, they can then create a personal space on the site that displays all the ads for businesses in their area, selecting and searching by the product categories they’re interested in. Users earn points each time they visit the website, and those points are converted into grants given to the site’s partners, which include GoodPlanet. RSS feeds allow users to access new ads and catalogues as soon as they come out. Of course, Pubeco’s success will depend on advertiser willingness, which it has taken pains to ensure. In addition to publishing all their leaflets online for geographically targeted distribution, companies can create their own pages on the Pubeco site, including hours, contact information, maps and a list of promotions. They get listed in the site’s business directory, and social networking buttons allow visitors to add them as friends, favourites or trusted connections, thereby establishing a reputation for the world at large to see. There’s no doubt too much paper is used in advertising today, and Pubeco’s solution is one that offers a win-win-win for advertisers, consumers and the environment. One to bring to other parts of the world? Spotted by: Déborah Bianchetto



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