'Let’s plant a tree together’ with real estate investors ING REF

ING Real Estate Finance is a regular at PROVADA, the annual real estate exhibition in the RAI. Their clients, existing and new real estate investors at ING REF, are guests at this well-attended event. It provides an opportunity for extensive networking and exchanging experiences, but of course ING REF also has a story to tell. About making real estate more sustainable and the role ING can play in that. So, ING REF was looking for a powerful and unambiguous approach to start the conversation with the real estate investors, and at the same time to draw attention to their Real Estate Forest. Result: Let’s plant a tree together.

The challenge

As a group, ING is putting sustainability even higher on the agenda. Together with its customers, the bank wants to make a maximum contribution to a better world. ING REF wants that too. That is why there is a five-step plan for real estate investors to achieve this. ING REF believes it is important for the built environment in the Netherlands to be green. Preferably Paris Proof, which means that a building emits (almost) no more CO2. The bank is working towards a Paris Proof built environment in 2050, setting a deadline of 2040 for its own buildings (rented and owned) and for all its customers. So, ten years earlier. In addition to green labels, it is particularly important that properties are as energy neutral as possible. 

ING REF has achieved many good results on this program in recent years. But the ambition is bigger than that. There are still many customers who are struggling with the question of whether and how they should become more sustainable. There are many motives for not taking the sustainable step (yet). At this moment approximately 40% of the total CO2 emissions in the Netherlands are caused by real estate. Recent research by ING shows that about one third of the Dutch business community is still reactive or even dismissive about sustainability. How do you get property investors interested, motivated, and activated? Of course, this activation question extends far beyond the contact moments at PROVADA, but it is an excellent time to bring the subject strongly forward. 

Request for SowiesoHelder: can you come up with a creative and communicative angle with which ING REF can tempt property investors in the Netherlands to get (more) actively involved in sustainability? A concept that 1) opens the conversation, 2) highlights our Real Estate Forest (one of ING REF’s two compensation forests) and entices investors to become ambassador/donor, and 3) convinces investors to first have a Sustainability Scan done on their real estate.

The solution

Let’s plant a tree together! A concept with a double layer. Let’s start the conversation about sustainable real estate (and its benefits); ING REF is happy to inform and inspire real estate investors about the five-step plan and the importance and benefits of sustainable real estate. And 2: let’s literally plant a tree together. A unique auction was held on ING REF’s stand at PROVADA: ‘famous trees’ (reproductions of works of art by Mauve, Renoir, Monet, Mondriaan and other painters) were auctioned for charity. ING REF partners with Trees for all by planting new trees – in Limburg and Bolivia – to compensate the CO2 emissions of real estate. If you didn’t want to bid on the works of art, you could of course simply ‘donate a tree’. In fact, they could ‘give back’ a tree, as all ING REF invitees had been symbolically given a cutting of a giant sequoia as a symbolic invitation to PROVADA: to plant a seed for the discussion on sustainability.

Incidentally, anyone who wasn’t an ING REF client yet but was wandering around PROVADA could see the message loud and clear from afar on the stand in striking ING orange: Let’s plant a tree together. Join us in making your real estate sustainable! Because that invitation actually applies to everyone. 

provada 3d stand

The result

Enthusiastic reactions from visitors, an appealing theme on and in the stand and a good opportunity to start the conversation with customers and business contacts in several ways. The success in figures: there were hundreds of visitors during the three-day event, the works of art were all sold, with a donation of more than 2000 EURO for the Real Estate Forest, hundreds of trees were donated and many new appointments for a Sustainability Scan were scheduled. In short: the seed has certainly been planted in the head of many property investors. After Provada, it’s ‘prepared’ to give it good ‘water and attention for a promising follow up. 

Or as ING REF says:

Roel Laumans, Marketing- & Communications advisor ING Real Estate Finance: “”With this cool and complete creative concept, we have attracted a lot of attention and taken another step towards making our customers’ properties more sustainable. ” 

And you?

Do you have a theme you want to present strongly and unambiguously during an event or in a new campaign? We are happy to help with the conceptual approach and the creative elaboration!

If you’d like
to know more
contact us

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