Don't Tell Us It Can't Be Done

With COP15 in full swing, climate change discussions are heating up – and environmentally conscious companies are joining the conversation. Several big players, including Timberland (Cone’s client) and Coke have launched consumer-focused campaigns to raise awareness of the importance of COP15, which aims to secure a new global climate change treaty to replace the Kyoto protocol.

Because Timberland’s business is the environment, the company has a vested interest in proving companies can make a profit and save the planet – without passing the cost to the consumer. Through its global “Don’t Tell Us It Can’t Be Done” campaign, Timberland hopes to bring the importance of climate change, and the need for binding legislation, to the forefront by giving the public a forum to let their voices be heard. Consumers are invited to get involved by signing an online petition at and staying up-to-date on conference happenings with an on-the-ground reporting team, comprised of environmental journalist Olivia Zaleski and Found Objects Films founder Gabriel London, who will post daily recaps and exclusive interviews at

In addition to the “Don’t Tell Us It Can’t Be Done” online campaign, Timberland is connecting with consumers on climate change through global advertising, in-store displays and social networks like Twitter and Facebook. And the campaign doesn’t end after the COP15 conference. No matter the result of the conference, Timberland will continue to call for commitment to the long-term outcome. The company has already achieved a 27 percent reduction in emissions since 2006, committed to building all new U.S. stores to LEED standards and implemented the Green Index, which measures and reports on products’ environmental impact, to help inform the design process.

What’s more, Timberland’s sincere attempts to drive social justice through commerce are paying off. President and CEO Jeff Swartz has appeared in the New York Times, Newsweek, Fast Company and The Sunday Times, and on Fox Business Network’s America’s Nightly Scoreboard and several major UK stations to discuss the company’s environmental commitments. And Timberland’s Earthkeeper collection, comprised of eco-friendly gear, now accounts for about 5 percent of total sales—proof that companies don’t have to choose between making a profit and doing good.

- Erin Zwaska, Former Account Executive


Back to Insights