Julie’s Bicycle Practical Guide: Communicating Sustainability
Champion environmental sustainability with tips on everything from defining your objectives to audience profiling, measurement, evaluation and messaging.
Why culture holds the key to sustainability
Culture is a powerful force in our society. By exploring and scrutinising our societal values, it challenges attitudes and changes what we deem to be 'normal'. By influencing the cultural narrative, creativity has played a key role in tackling gender, racial and sexual inequality. Now, it's time the environment became part of our cultural narrative.
The climate is changing around us, impacting on people's lives in nations rich and poor. Here, the creative industries are uniquely placed to play a leading role in driving change, in stretching ambition and in transforming our understanding. This isn't just the right thing to do morally - it's the rational choice too. Sustainability needs culture, but culture also needs sustainability to survive and thrive.
Why you should use this guide
If you're reading this, you're probably already doing things on sustainability. That's brilliant. Keep doing them and do more. This guide will help you talk about this work and it's important that you do that because if you don't talk about it people will never know. They will assume that because you're silent you're inactive. At worst, people may assume you're not doing anything because these things aren't that important - a belief they may carry into other areas of their life.
Sustainability is something people care about though. 40% of Europeans will pay more for sustainability. Nearly three quarters of people in the UK want to see businesses being more transparent about what they are doing on social and environmental issues. In the UK over 46% of consumers said they would pay more for things that protect the natural world.
Talking about your sustainability activities helps to normalise sustainability and make it part of day-to-day conversation but it's good for you too. Here's why:
- Your reputation will grow because people will see you taking responsibility. By building your reputation, you're helping to build loyalty.
- If you create surprising and memorable sustainability experiences, people will talk about them, raising your brand awareness and also the likelihood that people will think about sustainability beyond their experience with you.
- By talking about what you're doing, it will become a natural part of the way you do things. This makes doing more on sustainability easier.
- A commitment to environmental sustainability is something funders are increasingly asking for. Those taking action and talking about it will stand a far better chance of securing funding.