Get ahead in 2022: What is ESG and why should you care about it?
ESG strategies have increasingly been popping up everywhere you look. But they’re not a trend that’s cropped up out of nowhere, they’ve been gaining steam over the past decade. They’ve now reached a point where they play a crucial role in shaping businesses of the future. But before we get into that, let’s start with what ESG is.
ESG (Environmental, Social, Governance) is a framework that businesses use to showcase how they operate.
ESG is different from a business plan because it outlines how businesses will make a profit, while also making positive contributions to their company and society at large. But ESG isn’t just for investor discussions in the boardroom, it also extends to marketing and communications. And here’s how you can apply it.
The environment is on everyone’s mind and lips.
With a new year here, companies of all sizes are making space for environmental efforts. Take a look at how your company does things: do you have a strict paperless approach at the office, do you have internal sustainability challenges at work, or does your brand swear by sustainable packaging? Whatever your company does to protect the environment is your Environmental effort, something that’s worth noting down and talking about.
Here’s why: Millennials and Generation Z are willing to pay more for products that keep the environment and social wellbeing in mind. Investors (a proportion of whom is likely to be millennials) will want to cater to this demand, and companies who exhibit a socially and environmentally-sound strategy are sure to get ahead.
The Social part of ESG is all about people, and more importantly – their safety and rights. What does this look like in practice? Picture emerging fashion brands going the extra mile to ensure their production line is fair and safe and that everyone involved in producing their products is fairly compensated. Think of restaurants restructuring how their staff is paid, so they don’t have to rely on tips as a main source of income. Imagine corporates launching internal initiatives to protect their employees from exploitation and burnout.
If your company is already making socially-minded changes, make sure your customers know about it. Educating your audience about how you’re looking after your team will not only inspire them to make similar changes in their life, it will also deepen their confidence in your brand using a little tactic called Brand Recall.
The Governance part of ESG is all about how you do things.
It’s related to how you’re working towards your overarching goal, and whether this goal has everyone in mind – from the environment to your employees, customers, and stakeholders.
If you’re defining your ESG in 2022, a good way to start is by revisiting your company’s vision, mission, and values. Are they aligned with the times or could they do with a refresh? Your vision, mission, and values are your company’s and team’s guiding light. So you’ll want to ensure they’re sustainable and inclusive.
ESG in marketing & communications
Communicating your ESG strategy to your audience will help enrich your brand’s identity.
It will remind your customers why they chose you in the first place, and why they should keep choosing you over the competition. It’s important to remember that your ESG strategy shouldn’t be designed with profit in mind. Instead, it should be focused on sparking much-needed change, for the greater good.
ESG plays a role in public relations, social media, content creation, and copywriting.
All the tenets of your marketing strategy can echo what your values are.
If you’re ready to start weaving your ESG strategy into your communications and marketing strategy, #teamSOCIATE can help. Our award-winning PR company in Dubai and communications agency works with brands of all sizes to get their name out into the world and continually keep their audience engaged.
Reach out to [email protected] to start 2022 on the right note.