Brand Support for Sustainable Development Goals is Rising, Reveals 3BL Media Study

By Dave Armon, 3BL Media CMO
Jun 6, 2016 10:00 AM ET
Campaign: 3BL Blogs

The United Nation’s sustainable development goals (SDGs) have sparked corporate and nonprofit communications activities that are growing each month, according to an analysis we’ve just conducted here at 3BL Media.

Brands have created 30 percent more digital content mentioning the SDGs or Global Goals so far in the second quarter of 2016 than the prior quarter. Consumer, pharmaceuticals and financial services were among the sectors referencing the SDGS more often.

The Global Goals were masterfully launched in September 2015 with great fanfare that included leaders of state, celebrities and a colorful light show on the side of the UN building.  What was unclear at the time is whether the private sector would rally behind the goals.  Our analysis of corporate communications messaging shows this is happening.

On Sept. 25, UN member countries adopted a set of Global Goals to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all as part of a new sustainable development agenda. Each goal has specific targets to be achieved over the next 15 years.

Of all content distributed by 3BL Media, a corporate communications platform dedicated to corporate social responsibility and sustainability content, messages relating to the Global Goals have grown each month since fall 2015.

We decided to do this content mining ahead of the annual Sustainable Brands conference in San Diego, where I’ll be chatting with brands about the SDGs and live streaming on our Facebook page.  Among the content types included in the analysis of 3BL Media “Flexible Media Releases” are blog posts, videos, reports, infographics articles and press releases.

With only two months of the second quarter tallied, the number of Flexible Media Releases mentioning the Global Goals had already exceeded the January-March period by 30 percent.

Consumer and pharmaceutical brands are tops in referencing the Global Goals.  Among the consumer companies outlining commitments to tackle challenges are PepsiCo, Diageo, General Motors, Kimberly-Clark, General Mills, Nestle and H&M.

Among pharmaceuticals, GSK, Novo Nordisk and Pfizer have included explicit messaging in external communications.  Pfizer has wrapped the first floor of its New York City headquarters building in a billboard touting the Global Goals.

The nonprofit sector and NGOs are also actively communicating about the Global Goals.  Among those distributing a steady stream of messaging are PYXERA Global, Common Impact, UN Global Compact, GRI, Business Call to Action, Global Sourcing Council, the World Wildlife Fund and CECP.

For individuals with an interest in tracking company and nonprofit content relating to the Global Goals are encouraged to subscribe to a free, daily email summary, the 3BL Media News Alert