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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AT&T’s Experiment with Sustainable Marketing Messages

As the increasing number of sustainability initiatives from some of today’s leading brands is demonstrating, the market for sustainable products and services is growing rapidly. The impact of a product or service on communities, on societies and on the environment is being given increasing consideration by today’s and tomorrow’s consumers. If that consideration can be converted into increased sales for sustainable products and services, it’s good news both for companies and for the planet. But what’s the best way to market sustainability benefits?

WRAP: Consumers Curious About What Happens to Recycling Beyond the Bin

New insights from WRAP’s annual recycling tracker have revealed that over half the UK population wants to know more about what happens to their recycling beyond the bin. The results of the organization’s survey have shaped the theme of this year’s Recycle Week; ‘Recycling — it’s worth it.’

Ganaz: Putting Tech in Workers’ Hands to Improve Recruitment Practices

Brands have identified labor recruitment as one of the riskiest parts of their supply chains, and rightly so. Human trafficking, forced labor and wage theft often have their origin in recruiting practices.

Ben & Jerry's, Phone2Action Team Up to Turn Ice Cream Lovers Into Activists

To provide its customers with a simple and effective way to take action in support of its advocacy campaigns and engage with local lawmakers and members of Congress, Ben & Jerry’s has struck up a new partnership with Phone2Action, a digital advocacy platform that connects citizens to lawmakers via Facebook, Twitter, text and email.

Nespresso Launches First Major Sustainability Campaign

With sustainability increasingly informing consumers’ purchasing habits and behaviors, it is becoming imperative for brands to effectively — and authentically — communicate what they are doing to address key social and environmental issues along the supply chain. In an effort to shed light on its sustainability efforts, Nespresso is shifting away from its signature star-studded spots to a new ad campaign focused on the farmers and communities that are the backbone of the brand.

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Cone Communications Gives Companies a Lesson on How to Speak Gen Z

Eighty-one percent of Gen Z believes they can have an impact on social and environmental issues by using social media, according to Cone Communcations' new report 2017 Cone Gen Z CSR Study: How to Speak Z. The study, surveying U.S. teens ages 13-19, examined Gen Z’s aptitude and attitudes toward company involvement in social and environmental issues – and how willing they are to stand up for causes they care about.

Review: The Indispensible How-to (and How-Not-to) Guide to Making, Marketing ‘Greener Products’

Wouldn’t it be nice if there was a book that summarized the successful sustainability strategies typically showcased at Sustainable Brands conferences?

Report: North America Lags Behind Europe, Asia in Sustainability Reporting

The Centre for Sustainability Excellence (CSE) has released its second annual Sustainability Reporting Trends in North America report, highlighting trends from 551 companies in Canada and the United States during the 2015-2016 period. The report reviews reporting practices, external assurance practices, the presence of carbon footprint metrics and financial performance.

Mattel, ColorADD Launch First-Ever Inclusive UNO® Deck for the Colorblind

Coinciding with International Colorblind Awareness Day, global learning development and play company Mattel has launched UNO® ColorADD, the world’s first card game for the colorblind.

Cotopaxi, truth® Team Up to Empower Communities to Take a Stand Against Tobacco

In recent weeks, outdoors organizations such as The North Face and Paradox Sports have been making marked efforts to make positive changes in local communities across the US with the rollout of new campaigns and initiatives that aim to spark conversations around inclusion.

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Panera Serves Up the 'Sweet Facts' in New Transparency Initiative

Overconsumption of added sugar is the latest issue to preoccupy the food industry. On the heels of the launch of KIND Healthy Snacks’ Fruit Bites, for which the brand filled New York City’s Times Square with over 45,000 pounds of sugar in a bid to draw attention to the 4.7 billion pounds of sugar consumed by children each year, Panera Bread has announced a new nutrition education scheme that will put the ‘sweet facts’ about its products right into the hands of consumers.

KIND Piles 45K Lbs of Sugar in Times Square to Illustrate Need for Better Snacks

Times Square has housed plenty of eye-catching sights over the years, but this might be the sweetest. In a bid to create buzz around its new product and the amount of added sugar consumed by children in the US each year — a whopping 4.7 billion pounds — KIND Healthy Snacks installed a towering pile of sugar — 45,485 pounds of it — in the heart of the highly trafficked square, stopping professionals and tourists alike in their tracks. The educational installation comes in the midst of back-to-school madness and visually represents how much added sugar kids in the US eat every 5 minutes.

Now All of Giant's Customers Can Understand 'HowGood' Their Food Choices Really Are

Transparency hasn’t always been a strong point for the food industry, but a new partnership between HowGood, a research organization and in-store rating system that identifies industry leaders in the food system, and supermarket chain Giant Food could serve as a turning point for the sector. The relationship, which started as a test pilot in Giant stores in the Baltimore-Washington Metropolitan area, is expanding to all Giant stores due to positive customer feedback on the program.

How Companies Brought Attention to the Pollinator Decline

In the lead-up to National Honey Bee Day (August 19), I was inspired to take a look at brands’ recent efforts to ensure the health and stability of our tiny pollinator friends. In the past few years, we have seen a host of organizations garnering attention for the issue, first with research and later, amped-up efforts with highly visible, consumer-facing campaigns to bridge the awareness gap.

Molson Coors Aims to 'Raise the Bar on Beer' With New 2025 Sustainability Goals

Molson Coors Brewing Company has released its 2017 Our Beer Print report, announcing a bold, new sustainability strategy and goals to guide the company through 2025. This is the first sustainability report released since Molson Coors closed on the acquisition of MillerCoors from SABMiller in October 2016, making it one of the world’s largest global brewers.

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The North Face Targets Inclusivity with New Social Impact Campaign

Walls have conventionally been viewed as objects that divide, an idea that has intensified in this new era. But to The North Face, walls are places where people in the climbing community come together to test themselves, build trust and strengthen their bonds. They aren’t meant to divide us, but rather to unite us.

In Chile, a Dolphin Is Running for President to Highlight Need for Strong Climate Leadership

Greenpeace has a knack for creatively communicating about its causes and its latest campaign is no exception. The NGO is backing a dolphin in Chile’s upcoming presidential election to call attention to the need for strong climate leadership in the country.

First-Ever Lawsuit Over ‘Inadequate’ Climate Risk Disclosure Could Set New Precedent for Businesses

It is becoming increasingly important for companies to disclose information about long-term climate risks as more and more investors are using this information to inform financial decisions. While a general shift towards transparency is taking shape, many businesses still lag behind in sharing information about their environmental performance and impacts — as well as the consequences of a changing climate on their operations. However, the launch of the world’s first-ever climate disclosure lawsuit could help accelerate the uptake of the practice.

The 2 Most Important Pages of Your Sustainability Report

We’ve done a lot of thinking, and writing, over the years about the broad topic of corporate sustainability and citizenship reporting (see here and here for examples). But for this post, I’m going to narrow the focus to what I believe are the two most important pages of your report: the CEO Letter. Why? Simply put: It’s concise, it comes from the top, and (if properly constructed) it provides readers with critical insight into your citizenship approach — all in the span of one or two (hopefully not three) pages.

Green & Black's, Cadbury Swap Out Fairtrade for In-House Cocoa Life Verification Scheme

Earlier this summer, British supermarket group Sainsbury’s inspired a flurry of criticism after launching its own in-house sustainability standard, ‘Fairly Traded.’ At the time of the announcement, The Fairtrade Foundation suggested the new model could bring about disempowerment — and set a dangerous precedent.

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