ESG Marketing: Crafting an ESG-Focused Brand Image



What is ESG? The Corporate Sustainability Indicator, “Environmental, Social, and Governance”


ESG (“Environmental, Social, and Governance”) refers to the three aspects of corporate social responsibility (CSR). Investors nowadays pay attention not only to a company’s financial growth but also to how much social responsibility a company takes on. It has become one of the crucial factors in measuring how a corporation functions. 


Benefits of emphasizing ESG for companies include facilitating brand enhancement, raising brand awareness, attracting talent, targeting potential clients, and consequently establishing trust among the corporation and their clients, employees, and society. It, in turn, builds up the corporate brand value, reduces costs, and lowers the operation risk, improving the overall and long-term performance of the company.


“Green Up” Your Brand Image: ESG becomes the Mindset and Marketing Strategy from All Walks of Life


Corporations responded to the ESG movement not only to put CSR into practice but also in hoping to be noticed by the right customers and potential investors. Take the semiconductor industry as an example. TSMC started to publish its CSR reports (Renamed “Sustainability Report” in 2021) annually in 2007. They created a website for publishing ESG information They promoted it through other digital marketing approaches, such as managing a CSR Facebook fan page, updating the ESG newsletter from time to time, and collaborating with news media. As a result, they have successfully demonstrated their commitments and outcomes due to ESG initiatives to their potential investors and clients. 


Apart from the semiconductor industry, the financial, aviation, telecommunications, and retail industries have responded to the ESG principle. For instance, Cathay United Bank under Cathay Financial Holdings is the first bank to sign the Equator Principles and has become one of the signatories of the Principles for Responsible Banking (PRB). Moreover, Cathay Financial Holdings is the only financial institution that has taken part in Climate Action 100+, considering that climate risks are a part of corporate operation strategy.


How to Tell an ESG Story? Showcase Your Brand Value Effectively


Essential Point A: Keep Your ESG Content Straightforward and Refined


It would help if you always make it clear and precise how the company values ESG principles, what approaches it has adapted to put into practice, and the stance you take on specific issues.


Take Edwards Vacuum, assisted by the Geber Team, as a prominent example. The corporate team responded to the “Global Climate Awareness Event,” and the corporate executives led the team in having a deeper understanding of the issue of climate change. Geber transformed this message into a “Social Asset” and disclosed this act on their official Facebook page as a commitment to sustainability. Furthermore, another example is ASML Taiwan, one of the largest semiconductor chip suppliers with advanced lithography technology, which is also one of Geber’s clients. With the colleagues earnestly gathered around and participating in the “Pride Parade,” Geber organized and shared the news on their Facebook page. It produces cohesion among colleagues and manifests the company’s culture of inclusion of diversity. 


Essential Point B: Add ESG message to your “Social Strategy Content Calendar”


Before executing ESG marketing, you can provide more depth and width of the corporate’s ESG messages by establishing a comprehensive “Content Calendar.” Using ASML Taiwan as an example, Geber helps to organize and structure a monthly content calendar for their Facebook page. Geber focused on direct communication and combined ESG content with ongoing holidays and activities to prepare related materials beforehand. 


Essential Point C: Create a User-Friendly Content Based on the Habit of Your Audience!


When you are done with your ESG website, ESG report, and award application, the audience needs to know about it! The information must be brought out to the audience,  or it would simply be solid, boring statistics. Thus, how to create compelling and relevant content on issues regarding ESG becomes a significant task. 


Social posts may be demonstrated with humor and vigor, by sharing fun facts in the cliff notes version, or even with an interesting conversion of statistics to daily concepts. All the above helps to draw the audience’s attention and, thus, engage with the page. SEMI, another organization assisted by Geber, would be an outstanding example. They played the role of “a knowledge-spreader” and discussed “the you-must-know knowledge of Carbon Footprint Verification (CFV),” successfully gaining over 700 likes and 200 shares.