Moving to Digital

Sustainability is core to UBC’s mission, and we all have an important role to play by demonstrating sustainability through the choices we make in communicating with our audiences. For example, you’ll want to consider whether your publication needs to be printed in the first place.

Why Go Digital?

You can do things online you can’t in print:

  • Save paper.
  • Update online documents easily.
  • Create fewer carbon emissions in production and distribution.
  • Measure success in greater detail.
  • Easily link to related information.
  • Use interactive elements to engage your audience.
  • Use video to tell stories and draw your audience in.
  • Share easily and save on mailing costs.
  • Create opportunities for two-way conversations with your audience.

Marketing and Promotions

You need to get the word out about your digital publication as you would with any printed publication.

  • Use both digital and traditional methods to build traffic.
  • Build an internal communications plan.
  • Make it easy for your colleagues to help by providing assets and messaging.
  • Don’t underestimate the role of social media.

Sustainable Communications

Decide whether your publication needs to be printed in the first place. Online documents save paper and can be updated easily.

  • Work with your graphic designer to develop a project that is as sustainable as possible.
  • Eliminate bleeds, which is when ink runs off the edge of your page. This can save a substantial amount of paper, ink, and money.
  • Consider your medium as your message; in what ways can you innovate and enhance value in your project by considering sustainability?
  • Design and communications collateral can become artifacts, items we enjoy and treasure. What is the quality of your publication? Is it at a high enough standard to be kept or is it disposable?
  • Measure: How effective was the promotion? Did you reach your audience, did all the collateral get distributed? Knowing the impact of your outreach will help you to plan better for next time.

For detailed tips on sustainable design and printing practices, view the Sustainable Purchasing Guide (PDF).