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Product, Service & Design Innovation
Measuring & Improving Brand Portfolio Sustainability to Meet the Demands of a Changing Market

The complex issues facing business and society demand complex and collaborative solutions; disconnected, myopic management techniques are no longer effective.

Brands are adapting to a rapidly changing market in which customer demand for sustainable products and services continues to grow. In order to remain competitive, they must prioritize innovation while simultaneously juggling the multitude of tasks required to make it happen. Companies of all sizes are finding new ways to stay relevant in this ever-evolving landscape, and working hard to innovate and create sustainable solutions that will remain attractive to customers in the near and long term. It can be a difficult balancing act, but one that more and more companies are successfully managing.

Sustainable Brands (SB) Socio-Cultural Trends Research™ reveals that 70 percent of US consumers are looking for companies to provide sustainable products or services that will help them to live more sustainable lifestyles. Further, 78 percent say they will support companies that act sustainably by purchasing its products or services; and 73 percent report that, all else being equal, they would switch brands if a competitor offered a more sustainable version of the same product. The market is rewarding businesses that are acting on social and environmental challenges while simultaneously building brand trust in the process. It is imperative for today’s leading brands to implement industry tools that allow them to seamlessly embed sustainability across its organization.

As a health and wellness company, The Clorox Company recognizes the potential of its diverse portfolio of brands to touch people’s lives throughout every part of their day. Through its Sustainability Center, the company launched its 2030 strategy with the ambition to have every brand within its portfolio play a part in creating a more inclusive and sustainable world. To achieve these goals, Clorox needed to find a way to align its brand teams across the enterprise and engage consumers in storytelling strategies that would unlock higher brand performance and value.

To establish its baseline and create a common language, the company applied the SB Brand Transformation Roadmap® (SB Roadmap) at the brand level across the enterprise. The self-assessment revealed best practices and gaps across the SB Five Pillars of Brand Sustainability™ while also offering tangible targets to prioritize on its journey to becoming a sustainable enterprise. This tool allowed each of the brands to benchmark its current operational progress and then determine the actions each brand needed to take to advance its individual aspirations. Clorox says giving the technical teams the ability to own their individual Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) process was a huge win for garnering buy-in across the teams.

The Power of Climate Labeling: Key Learnings from the SB/How Good Partnership

Join us for a free webinar to hear how Sustainable Brands® (SB) and HowGood are revolutionizing event menus with climate-labeled foods. Learn how these labels can drive sustainable behavior change and help you align your brand values with your ingredient choices — Thursday, 18 July 2024, at 2pm EDT.

The process revealed that the Governance pillar was something that needed to be centrally managed, where subject-matter experts have the ability to standardize their overarching enterprise goals and business practices. The SB Roadmap process also motivated Clorox to identify specific emotional, functional and societal values to prioritize in its product development and marketing communications to take its brand influence with consumers and other stakeholders to the next level and beyond — including representation in public-policy positions and driving systemic change throughout the industry.

Implementing the SB Roadmap across the enterprise enabled The Clorox Company to:

  • Create cross-functional alignment on individual brand baselines and aspirations within the SB Roadmap framework

  • Streamline its process on how to benchmark and achieve its sustainability goals

  • Elevate the role and priority of sustainability messaging through both responsible ingredient sourcing and sustainable packaging choices

  • Receive increased earned media coverage for individual brands

“What we love about the SB Brand Transformation Roadmap® is it’s a self-assessment tool that helps a leadership team in our business units understand where the brand is on the journey and break down the steps to get from here to where they aspire to be.”

Eric Schwartz, Chief Marketing Officer, The Clorox Company

Clorox’s central team has hosted 13 internal workshops to introduce the SB Roadmap into its business processes and to embed it into its annual strategic sustainability planning for every business unit across the portfolio. Through this transformative process, Clorox has fostered a culture of sustainability across its enterprise — allowing the teams to take a whole-systems approach to product design and innovation with an understanding of how they each contribute to the larger mission of the company.

In order to thrive in an increasingly challenged world, brands must quickly adjust their strategies away from the traditional 'business as usual' approach. Complex issues demand complex and collaborative solutions; disconnected, myopic management techniques are no longer effective.

Dive deeper into successful ways to transform your organization from the inside out at the SB’23 conference in San Diego — October 16-19. Experience keynotes, breakouts, workshops and special events where business leaders will explore opportunities around activating brand purpose, influencing consumer behavior at scale, transformative governance and metrics, regenerative operations and supply chain, and next-generation design and business innovation.