Marketing and Comms

How brands are evolving in the area of sustainability marketing and communications — and how their stakeholders are asserting their own needs and preferences.

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Should Businesses Be Hiring Anthropologists Instead of MBAs?

The language of business can be combative (launch, target, strategize), or very often it is about profits, sales, shared value - the language of money. We are either warriors or accountants when it comes to business. However, both warring and counting money are inherently non-productive. In themselves, as actions, they are incapable of producing growth.

Bosch and WWF Team Up to Make Sustainable Seafood Consumption Mainstream

Growing demand for seafood and a global population growing at a rate of 75 million people every year has put ocean resources under significant strain. Approximately 90 percent of global fishing grounds are now over-fished or fully-exploited. Sustainable consumption of seafood is therefore imperative, and one of the only ways to reverse the decline and collapse of fish stocks within our lifetime.

How Audi Lost the Brand Activist Race: 6 Lessons for Brands That Aspire to a Social POV

The year has hardly begun and we’ve already witnessed radical shifts throughout society - growing anti-establishment contingencies, women’s rights marches, and the new US administration are some of the major talking points of 2017. Many have called this the ushering of a new era, one where institutions are met with anxiety rather than trust; in such a climate, brands and businesses can play an important role through establishing a distinct POV and by supporting actions that address critical societal issues of the day.

Sign o' the Times: This Year's Super Bowl Had More Goodvertising Than Ever

The political unrest seems to be good for advertising with a conscience, as this year’s Super Bowl saw the highest number of Goodvertising campaigns ever.

At the 2017 Sundance Film Festival, Climate Change Is King

A decade after An Inconvenient Truth brought climate change into the heart of popular culture, the follow-up to the watershed environmental documentary, An Inconvenient Sequel, will make its world premiere at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival as a Day One screening, part of The New Climate - a program dedicated to conversations and films about environmental change and conservation.

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Koch Industries Plays the Minority Card to Push Forward Fossil Fuels Agenda

Minority groups are usually the ones that have the most to lose when it comes to polluting fossil fuels, both in terms of their climate change and health-related risks. But with its Fueling U.S. Forwardcampaign, the Koch brothers are trying to tell another story in a desperate attempt to save a dying industry, spinning fossil fuels as the saving grace for minorities and low-income families.

Bill Nye Is Back to 'Save the World' from Misinformation, Climate Deniers

‘Science Guy’ Bill Nye is coming back to television this Spring – this time to put climate deniers in their place.

G20 Task Force Report Creates Buzz Around Climate-Related Financial Disclosures

One year after its formation, the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TFCD), a global task force created by the G20’s Financial Stability Board (FSB) to prevent market shocks stemming from climate change, has published its report, Recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures.

Scotland (and the Rest of Us) Urged to Shop, Cook Thoughtfully to Prevent Holiday Food Waste

As we indulge in holiday goodies, food waste becomes an inevitable consequence. This holiday season, a projected 50,375 tons of food and drink will be thrown out; Zero Waste Scotland (ZWS) is aiming to show citizens how to avoid this – and to save money – simply by shopping smart and avoiding food waste. According to figures from ZWS, in December alone Scots are expected to throw away over 3.5 million mince pies, more than 240,000 Christmas puddings, and the equivalent of over 100,000 turkeys. Using these items up – or not over-buying them in the first place – could represent a potential saving of over £3 million.

Purpose Across Borders: What Regions Can Learn from Each Other

Earlier this year, Radley Yeldar launched its 2016 Fit for Purpose Index, which explores how global brands are adapting to the shifting expectations from their stakeholders to play a positive role in society. The research was conducted at a global level, which gives insight into how purpose breaks down over three major regions: Europe, North America and Asia. One of the findings from the research is that the global community remains incredibly diverse when it comes to engaging with purpose.

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Communication Chasm: Brand Wins, Missed Opportunities in Engaging Consumers on Purpose

If ever there was a time for the world’s leading brands to show leadership in sustainability, that time is now. Globally, the political resolve to combat climate change is being challenged by the arrival of a new US president who considers global warming a “hoax.” Resource scarcity and shrinking biodiversity are a growing concern for more and more areas of the planet. Immigration fears are being stoked by nationalist politicians throughout the world; and attaining racial and gender diversity continues to be an unattained goal in many parts of global society.

Organic Standards Board Cracking Down on Next-Generation GMOs

The National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) has voted unanimously to update U.S. organic standards to exclude ingredients derived from next-generation genetic engineering and gene editing.

A Conscious Consumer Walks Into a Bar: Investing in Social Impact Film Storytelling

There has been a millennial marketplace shift - the type of companies that this generation of consumers want to patronize - and work for - are companies that align with their personal values. How is the consumer informed of those values? Long-form storytelling is becoming increasingly powerful in its ability to communicate story in a way that can enhance brand value, relate purpose to consumers and act as a ‘social insurance policy.’

Demonstrating Impacts of Sustainability Certifications Will Require Better Communication

Certification has, over the years, played a significant role in the development and execution of ethical supply chain programs across industries, providing frameworks within which brands can analyze and make improvements to their practices and business models. It has also provided a means to communicate brand values and commitment to these values to the public. Though certification has evolved to become an essential component of the corporate landscape, it still faces a number of challenges.

ISEAL: Meeting the Need for More Impact Data from Sustainability Standards

Throughout Sustainable Brands’ New Metrics ’16 event this week, I expect to hear a continual drumbeat of the need to measure impact. That is how it should be. As a panellist for the session on “Demonstrating the Impact of Sustainability Labels and Certification,” I will be one of those discussing why businesses need to measure the social and environmental impact of their sustainable sourcing programs and how they can find out about the impact of sustainability standards.

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One Simple Action: How FSC, Kimberly-Clark Are Engaging Consumers in Sustainable Forestry

Moving the needle on consumer behavior remains a monumental task - but a necessary one if we are to achieve the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). With household consumption accounting for nearly 70 percent of economic activity in the United States, consumers’ choices can make a real difference. At the same time, consumers are faced with so many decisions in their day-to-day lives that “decision fatigue” is commonplace. We cannot expect consumers to weigh the environmental and social implications of each of their actions and purchases.

Nat Geo Follows 'Before the Flood' Doc with Campaign to Raise $100K for Wildlife Conservation

With over 8.7 million views on YouTube already, Leonardo DiCaprio’s documentary film Before the Flood is already making waves.

Dannon's Non-GMO Commitment Garners 'Unfounded Accusations' from Farm Groups

Earlier this year, yogurt giant Dannon announced new sustainable agriculture and non-GMO commitments. Now, farm organizations have decided that food companies 'jumping on the anti-GMO bandwagon' cannot go unchallenged.

Stop Selling, Start Mobilizing: The Rise of Movement Brands

The relationship between brands and people is being transformed before our very eyes; the old-fashioned, binary model of companies selling and people consuming is dead. Traditional, rigid hierarchies of control are being replaced with more fluid and open peer-to-peer networks. We are rapidly adopting the principles of a sharing economy as the mainstream norm and there is a new world order forming. You can choose to see this as either a challenge or an opportunity but the brands that will win are the movement brands that are brave enough to let their consumers take an equal stake in setting the agendas and creating content.

New Research Reveals Opportunity, Methods for Engaging Investors on Long-Term Value Creation

A growing number of investors are looking for high-quality information on a company’s sustainability performance. Earlier this year Larry Fink, CEO of Blackrock, called on S&P 500 CEOs to demonstrate how environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors contribute to long-term commercial success.

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