Please join us in saluting one of the early values based marketers, Burt Shavitz, the face behind Burt’s Bees, who recently passed away. Shavitz and his girlfriend started Burt’s Bees with a simple tube of lip balm in 2008 in Maine. Today the company, headquartered in North Carolina, distributes 200 facial and body skin care products to 30,000 retail outlets internationally. Underscoring the brand’s retail success is the company’s greater purpose: the environment, sustainability and giving back.
In founding the company, Burt and and co-founder, Roxanne Quimby, were ‘innocent capitalists’, says the Huffington Post. They didn’t do market research, and based their signature yellow brand on Burt’s love of the color of school buses. But what really resonated was a dedication to a higher purpose, in ensuring sustainability and the brand’s all-natural benefits.
Even after selling to Clorox, Shavitz and Burt’s Bees remained true to their values of focusing on the greater good and what it calls its ‘triple bottom line’: people, profit, planet. Burt’s Bees promotes natural ingredients, minimal processing and dedication to the environment.
In addition to supporting the local community with funding, volunteer time and paid-time off for employees to give back, Burt’s Bees’ Greater Good Foundation has issued $1.2 million in grants since 2007. Burt’s Bees upholds its partners to a code of conduct in protecting nature and human rights. It encourages customers to ‘Recycle On Us’ with its mail back program.
We honor Burt as an original values marketer and hope other brands will be inspired by his passion for a higher purpose.