Mariamz

Posts Tagged ‘sustainability

Our poll of 1,015 Americans shows that nearly 30 percent of consumers plan to increase the amount of goods and/or services they buy from socially responsible companies in the coming year. This is up from 18 percent who reported buying more from such companies in 2012 compared to 2011.

In total, 60 percent believe it’s important to shop responsibly, compared to “being green” (83%), reducing consumption (81%) and contributing financially to nonprofits (65%).

good.must.grow (PDF)

Love the way Unilever are integrating sustainability communications into their Facebook page here – which currently has a healthy 697,000 likes. Within the dedicated ‘sustainable living’ tab on its app the brand asks people what they do and don’t want to hear about from its three sustainability pillars.

The thumbs down sign is almost, but not quite, a forbidden ‘dislike’ button. But in any case negative responses are not displayed – it seems only total thumbs ups are shown.

Participation numbers aren’t high – but that’s probably because it’s buried half way down a secondary tab on its main brands app (and not sure how long it’s been there). They also might want to consider integrating voting with some sort of incentive, e.g. a charity donation – like Petplan UK are doing at the moment on their Facebook app:

Disclosure: Petplan UK are a client

Mucover

The growth in Social media use and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) are inextricably linked. With access to real-time information on companies are up to, and what the world work thinks about it, social media holds businesses to account. And they know it. So more and more, companies are seeking to be perceived as socially responsible. For example, by backing positive, healthy initiatives, like the London 2012 Olympic Games.

And it works beyond the perception. Behaviour is changed. Positive outcomes are achieved, e.g.

“Procter and Gamble, another Games sponsors, has also been doing this for a while. One of its many brands, Ariel, ran a campaign called Cool Clean to try and get customers to wash clothes at 30 degrees. Peter White, P&G’s global sustainability director, says proudly, “In the UK, only around 2% of consumers were washing their clothes at 30 degrees or lower in 2002. By 2011 this had risen to over 30%. In the Netherlands it has reached over 50%.” He also points to a Pampers-Unicef collaboration that vaccinated over 100 million mothers and babies in 46 countries against neo-natal tetanus.”

Tim Smedley on the new Guardian Sustainable Business Social Impact hub

But how can we measure programmes relatively? Consistently? As brand managers, marketers or CSR professionals?

Demos have recently teamed up with Coca-Cola to try and answer this question. Their efforts have resulted in a proposed new model, to help business people measure and compare the difference their sponsorship / CSR activity makes:

You can read the full report on the Demos website.

Disclosure: P&G is a current client and Guardian Sustainable Business are a former employer

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has delivered a five year action plan for the UN entitled “The Future We Want,” elaborating on high level goals set out last year (and sharing directly with the world on Twitter).

Here are some key points from an information society perspective:

  • Technology continues to knit us more closely together… Yet, economic uncertainty and social inequity are widespread.
  • We are… preparing to empower future generations by offering quality, relevant and universal education to meet the challenges of the 21st century.
  • On conflict, my agenda highlights early warning and action on conflict by mapping, linking, collecting and integrating information from across the international system.
  • We will also adopt a preventive approach to human rights. The era of impunity is dead. We have entered a new age of accountability.
  • When events slip off the front page, when the cameras leave, the UN must be ready to maintain focus and attention.. We have a responsibility to help societies in transition… we will support “transition compacts” with agreed strategic objectives and mutual accountability in fragile and conflict environments.
  • We will do even more to promote women’s political participation worldwide
  • Today we have the largest generation of young people the world has ever known. They are demanding their rights and a greater voice in economic and political life.
  • We will harness the full power of transformative partnership across the range of UN activities by creating a New UN Partnerships Facility. It will work with the private sector, civil society, philanthropists and academia to advance common goals, catalyze commitments and promote accountability.

Ban Ki-moon

Can P&G make money in places where people earn $2 a day? “Our innovation strategy is not just diluting the top-tier product for the lower-end consumer… You have to discretely innovate for every one of those consumers on that economic curve, and if you don’t do that, you’ll fail”

Robert McDonald, P&G’s CEO via  Jennifer Reingold

Disclosure: P&G is a client of mine at Porter Novelli

if you don’t start with something uncomfortable, I don’t think you’re moving the needle far enough… We live in a world where resources are scarce, and we cannot keep stealing [them] from our children and grandchildren. So the biggest thing the world needs right now is courage to do the right thing – at a political and business level…  Each [brand] should have a social mission, a product mission and an economic mission – and they should [complement and support] each other…

Paul Polman, Unilever CEO

In this incredibly successful campaign, WWF Hungary reached over 275,000 people by combining creativity, sustainability, and PR. Its goal was to put the WWF at the forefront of Hungarian’s minds, whilst highlighting that individuals can donate 1% of their taxes to a charity of their choice. This was achieved (in partnership with their agency Akcio360) as follows:

  1. Just one WWF leaflet was printed, stating that 1% of tax is donateable to charity organisations in Hungary
  2. Two panda-dressed volunteers went to a shopping centre, one standing each end of escalators taking people between floors
  3. Panda one gave the leaflet to a person travelling up the escalator who, after reading, passed it to Panda two on reaching the top. The same leaflet was then given to the next person travelling down the escalator – and, repeat.
  4. This day of distributing just one leaflet was recorded and circulated to journalists and bloggers, leading to the video becoming a global viral hit.
  5. WWF therefore also managed to spread a secondary message (of relevance to marketers) in their video – on the potential for using media in an environmentally conscious and effective way:

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