The burden of being a communicator in the period we are going through is heavier than ever. It is not easy to talk about a sustainable future unless all parties are involved in the process and there is absolute cooperation between governments and non-governmental organizations. I attach great importance to our role as communicators in this cooperation and invite you to think about "sustainability communication".

What is the name of our job?

Under the discipline of public relations, we work to deliver the right message to the right place and to convince the stakeholders and target audience of the brands we represent of their strategic goals. These goals may vary on a brand basis. Therefore, learning what the brands we represent expect at the end of all the work to be done constitutes the most critical part of the short information we receive.

Up to a point

We public relations leaders leave the pursuit of daily messages and even hourly campaigns to the expertise of the advertising field, and we build a long-term structure by ensuring stability in fundamental discourses. If we are going to talk about "sustainability communication", we must accept that public relations and strategic communication consultancy are already the construction of sustainability communication. We are communicators working for the future, not for today from the first moment. And on a planet whose diseases are diagnosed with reports published one after another, the future, unfortunately, prevents us from thinking in pink and white. It is imperative that our action plans are greener, bluer, and more transparent.

What is Greenwashing? What is Greenwashing? By staying away from the problem of "greenwashing", which is a deception that should not be avoided and is actually a deception, and by adhering to transparency, sincerity, and ethical framework. Basically greenwashing. It is the lure of brands and companies to promote green messages, products, and efforts that are not actually in their genetics. This concept, which is translated into Turkish as "greenwashing" or "greenwashing", refers to "communicating a benefit" that puts the environmental, climatic or social damage of the main field of activity in the background.

For example, you pick up a product with a lot of additives and it says "We work for a green world". You might like it and throw it in your cart, or you might ask the following questions: "How do you work?" "What have you done so far?" "While food safety is such an important agenda, on which axis does your innovation work proceed? A very important part of our work is for the brands we represent to be prepared for the answers to these questions and to change their perspective to "benefit-oriented". Sustainability projects, because this is the trend. Not because everyone is doing it, not because it attracts attention, but in order to carry the stakeholder relationship to the future in a healthy way. Painting this planet green will not save the oceans, reducing biodiversity risks, and eliminate poverty and human rights threats.

Blah Blah Blah!

Recall Greta Thunberg's reaction at a recent summit - a global PR project for some, a symbol for others for her sincere journey - Greta accused leaders of making empty promises and drew applause with a historic "bla bla bla" imitation. If Greta is a project, let's stand up and applaud. If not, and if the journey that made her an icon was spontaneous, let's applaud even more. Either way, the main point we should pay attention to is that the new generation does not give a pass to open concepts. The expectations of the new generation will set the bar in sustainability communication. They are asking, seeking meaning and value, and they are not as obedient as previous generations.

On the way to becoming a brand activist...

The "Brand Activism" approach of Prof. Philip Kotler, one of the most important names in the field of marketing communication, actually matches the purpose of marketing and sustainability very successfully. In marketing communication, we offer people the products and services they need or desire and try to make them happier and more satisfied. Kotler says that this happiness and satisfaction must have meaning and value in it, and argues that brands need to be activists. So it's not just about producing and selling great products and services, it's also about what we bring to the world. And activating the brands we work with requires us to be activists.

We have the power to change the agenda

The task of public relations at this historic juncture is to change and improve the perspective of the company or brand it represents and to provide guidance on not ignoring the facts while structuring the future. If we are working with a brand or company that has already addressed the issue of sustainability in all its aspects, we can produce very enjoyable and beneficial projects. Conversely, we need to encourage our clients and partners to "sincerely" include sustainability in their strategic goals. Which of the 17 UN Global Compact Sustainable Development Goals should we take responsibility for? How should we align the course of our R&D activities with sustainability? How should we build a long-lasting friendship with our new generation of customers? There are many things to say, but I think these are the main questions to ask. In the other case, that is, if we are only focused on profit, the sustainability of that profit will also be at risk.


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