Via Triple Pundit:
Forging effective, sustainable brands and stakeholder relationships in the digital age sounds like it should be a given, but many companies fail to take a crucial step.
Instead of leveraging their digital media and social media connections as “engagement platforms” to actively involve stakeholders and the public, they remain stuck in what John Friedman might call an old-school approach from the 1990s, or PR 1.0, if you will. These companies use all the tools, such as email, Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and other social media, as simple “distribution channels” to disseminate messages, much like press releases, in one-way communications.
That’s all wrong, says Friedman, a Huffington Post Sustainability blogger. He authored a slim but highly instructive volume, “PR 2.0: How Digital Media Can Help You Build a Sustainable Brand,” designed to take companies to the next level in their sustainable branding approaches.
Basically it’s all about taking better control of your brand by using digital media better. “Many of the duties traditionally associated with communications departments, such as building internal buy-in and enhancing reputational capital, require that the organization maximize the effective development, implementation, management and communication of sustainability efforts across its value chain,” Friedman writes.
He notes that “80 percent of the market value of companies is contained in relationships with its stakeholders.” Therefore it’s vital to build a “strong connection between your digital communications strategy and your sustainability efforts.” This will refocus a company’s thinking “in order to more effectively engage with people about what matters to them.”
This connection between sustainability and corporate communications goes beyond the philosophical, Friedman continues: “It is a strategic necessity.”