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Common Mistakes
In Corporate
Sustainability
Communications
No
Flavor
Companies produce
materials with no
personality.
Jake Przespo flickr.com/photos/jakeprzespo/
Insert Logo Here
Logo?
Logo?
Logo?
Half the time, you could switch out the
com...
When you infuse your
content with your
brand’s flavor the
people who resonate
with your brand will be
happy to consume it.
Report
(or Corporate)
Speak
*Also known as using
a lot of words to say
not that much.
*
Dense reports with
stand-offish language
are all too common in
the sustainability
realm.
They’re a particular
problem in t...
With the sea of information on the
Internet, you’ve got seconds
before the next wave hits.
To communicate, you first have ...
So make it
clear.
Photo credit: Vjeran Lisjak freeimages.com
And provide
value.
Puffery
Beware the ‘we’re so
wonderful’ talk.
As far as any real
sustainability is
concerned, our actions
are in the early...
Instead, consider
how you can make
your stakeholders
the heroes.
Humanize your
content.
Lack of Clear
Communication
Goals
L
Too
Even Shakespeare
built comic relief into
his dramas.
Heavy
Aim to people up,
not weigh them down.
lift
On the other hand, it’s not all
rainbows and roses
either.
Put your information in context of the
larger global issues we’...
Aiming to please everyone
results in being bland and
inauthentic.
(Sustainability just
makes you a little
better you).
You...
Stakeholder engagements and materiality assessments should
be used to help you understand your stakeholders interests,
the...
Spewing
Facts
and
Figures
You can’t just throw a
bunch of information at
people and expect
them to understand.
Be their
guide.
Help them navigate the
landscape. Provide
wayfinding devices. Give
them a trail map.
What are you communicating and why?
•...
Over-extended statements
(like these company
samples) sound like
platitudes and put you in
greenwashing danger:
Platitudes...
Craft messages
that can stand a
little heat without
melting.
Greenwashing Test
If you can’t clearly
demonstrate it,
don’t ...
No
We connect and care through our emotions;
if there’s no emotional connection, there’ll
be little engagement.
A good way...
Image
Fail
The Internet has created an
age of visual
communication.
Images should reinforce your
overall messages, not jus...
oo much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much tex
uch text Too much text Too...
You may have brilliant stuff, but
if no one reads it, you have a
failure to
communicate.
Even in a report, walls of text a...
info@sherlockink.com
www.SherlockInk.com
• Strategic Communications
• Deep Sustainability Strategy
• Social Marketing Plus...
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12 Top Mistakes in Sustainability Communications

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Despite the dollars being spent on corporate sustainability, there are common issues that prevent communications from having the impact they could. Check out 12 common mistakes companies make in their sustainability communications (and other corporate communications).

Veröffentlicht in: Business
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12 Top Mistakes in Sustainability Communications

  1. 1. Common Mistakes In Corporate Sustainability Communications
  2. 2. No Flavor Companies produce materials with no personality.
  3. 3. Jake Przespo flickr.com/photos/jakeprzespo/ Insert Logo Here Logo? Logo? Logo? Half the time, you could switch out the company logo for another company and no one would notice.
  4. 4. When you infuse your content with your brand’s flavor the people who resonate with your brand will be happy to consume it.
  5. 5. Report (or Corporate) Speak *Also known as using a lot of words to say not that much. *
  6. 6. Dense reports with stand-offish language are all too common in the sustainability realm. They’re a particular problem in today’s online world.
  7. 7. With the sea of information on the Internet, you’ve got seconds before the next wave hits. To communicate, you first have to engage.
  8. 8. So make it clear. Photo credit: Vjeran Lisjak freeimages.com And provide value.
  9. 9. Puffery Beware the ‘we’re so wonderful’ talk. As far as any real sustainability is concerned, our actions are in the early stages. Photo Credit: Chris CjVision Flickr Be humble and avoid puffing yourself up.
  10. 10. Instead, consider how you can make your stakeholders the heroes. Humanize your content.
  11. 11. Lack of Clear Communication Goals
  12. 12. L
  13. 13. Too Even Shakespeare built comic relief into his dramas. Heavy
  14. 14. Aim to people up, not weigh them down. lift
  15. 15. On the other hand, it’s not all rainbows and roses either. Put your information in context of the larger global issues we’re facing. Show how your actions fit into the greater scheme. And you should be honest (which should probably go without saying).
  16. 16. Aiming to please everyone results in being bland and inauthentic. (Sustainability just makes you a little better you). You need to be who you are. Aiming to Please Everyone
  17. 17. Stakeholder engagements and materiality assessments should be used to help you understand your stakeholders interests, the language they use and the problems they face daily, so you can better engage them. Communicate from strength, not from fear. Middle of the road communications are reactive. You spend your time trying not to be run over.
  18. 18. Spewing Facts and Figures
  19. 19. You can’t just throw a bunch of information at people and expect them to understand. Be their guide.
  20. 20. Help them navigate the landscape. Provide wayfinding devices. Give them a trail map. What are you communicating and why? • What story are you telling? • What is there to see? • What does it mean? • What’s the bigger context?
  21. 21. Over-extended statements (like these company samples) sound like platitudes and put you in greenwashing danger: Platitudes ‘We care deeply about people and our planet’ ‘Our programs make an impact throughout the world’ ‘our products provide environmental sustainability’ ‘The very core of our company is sustainability’ ‘putting people first’ ‘helping to protect the environment and scarce resources, now and for future generations’
  22. 22. Craft messages that can stand a little heat without melting. Greenwashing Test If you can’t clearly demonstrate it, don’t say it. If you write stuff that sounds like hype, you miss the chance to connect with your audience.
  23. 23. No We connect and care through our emotions; if there’s no emotional connection, there’ll be little engagement. A good way to create connection and personality is by expressing your values. Heart
  24. 24. Image Fail The Internet has created an age of visual communication. Images should reinforce your overall messages, not just be ‘pretty’ placeholders.
  25. 25. oo much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much tex uch text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too uch text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too uch text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too uch text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too uch text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too Much Text T uch text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too uch text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too uch text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too uch text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too uch text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too uch text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too uch text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too uch text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too uch text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too uch text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too uch text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too uch text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too uch text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too much text Too h text Too much text Too much text Too much text
  26. 26. You may have brilliant stuff, but if no one reads it, you have a failure to communicate. Even in a report, walls of text are imposing. This is an age of learning to communicate differently. The old rules no longer apply. They cause people to click away.
  27. 27. info@sherlockink.com www.SherlockInk.com • Strategic Communications • Deep Sustainability Strategy • Social Marketing Plus+ • Research • Stakeholder Engagement • Organizational Development Contact Sherlock Ink Want a better return-on-investment on your sustainability efforts? Strategic Sustainability and Communications

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