Addressing greenwashing with a comprehensive playbook and a smart bot assistant
According to theWorld Risk Index for 2022, which assesses the disaster risk for 193 countries, the Philippines is the most exposed to natural disasters. Despite this, the Philippines achieved a score of 41.9 on theGlobal Sustainable Competitiveness Index, falling below the average of 44.1. These facts underscore the impact of the environmental crisis in the Philippines and the need for businesses and the government to fast-track the country’s green growth by adopting sustainable practices and policies.
However, there are two relevant communications issues that demand urgent attention: helping Filipino businesses and consumers understand sustainability and addressing the prevalence of greenwashing, or the practice of presenting misleading, biased, or ambiguous information or claims in an organization’s sustainability messaging.
The playbook’s aim is to provide brands and communicators in the Philippines with guidance on identifying and addressing the pitfalls of greenwashing while encouraging the adoption of authentic sustainability messaging. It includes practical strategies that address the “7 Sins of Greenwashing,” which include No Proof, Vagueness, Worshipping False Labels, Irrelevance, Hidden Trade-Off, Lesser of Two Evils, and Fibbing, as well as local insights and case studies that demonstrate how businesses can use the framework to identify and rectify potential greenwashing in their own communications.
“Communication professionals play a central role in curtailing greenwashing and sparking positive conversations that help fight climate change. At Vero, we wholeheartedly embrace our role as an agency to drive positive change in sustainability. Testament to this is being the first agency in APAC to sign the Clean Creatives pledge to refuse all work involving fossil fuel companies,” said Nicole Briones, Operations Director at Vero in the Philippines. “We see a growing demand for sustainable practices and the need to increase understanding and awareness of sustainability among businesses and consumers in the country. We believe actionable tools like the Greenwatching playbook can empower brands, communicators, and our own team to develop more authentic narratives about sustainability.”
Aside from the playbook, Vero rolls out an innovative “Greenwatcher” AI chatbot, trained with the knowledge and framework for greenwashing analysis as outlined in the sustainability playbook. The Greenwatcher simplifies the complex task of identifying and addressing greenwashing in communications. It is powered by access to OpenAI’s ChatGPT, where users can input prompts to help them analyze messages for potential greenwashing and receive recommendations on content revisions based on the guidelines provided in the playbook. The Greenwatcher is available for free here.
Creating impactful work
Beyond identifying areas where Vero can contribute to sustainability, the agency has also celebrated significant milestones in the past year that emphasized its dedication to supporting the growth of both global and local brands in the Philippines through effective and inspiring work. These accomplishments include:
Harnessing AI’s potential to craft bolder narratives:Recently, Vero has introduced Rover, an AI-first PR agency focused on empowering brands across the region to tell more impactful stories through AI. Rover’s goals include accelerating team learning and amplifying human creativity in areas like influencer collaborations, marketing strategies, trend analysis, and immersive experiences. The agency places a strong emphasis on upholding ethical AI practices, maintaining transparency, fact-checking, staying informed about AI-related regulations and standards, and fostering collaborations with AI thought leaders to ensure responsible and effective use of AI in communications.
Educating brands and communicators on evolving market trends: As part of its thought leadership efforts, Vero published awhite paper that delves into the health and wellness habits of Filipinos. This initiative has been instrumental in providing brands and communicators with valuable insights into the ever-changing preferences of consumers regarding their diets and lifestyles. By sharing market insights, Vero aims to equip brands and marketers with the information they need to develop more effective strategies that resonate with their target audiences.
Training the next generation of communicators in the Philippines: In the past year, Vero successfully concludedthe first iteration of its nextGEN internship program, which saw five interns gaining real-world professional experiences and invaluable insights into the communications industry. The interns also had the unique opportunity to collaborate with WWF-Philippines, contributing creative ideas aimed at helping the organization more effectively fulfill its mission.
Driving compelling stories for industry-leading clients: Vero had the privilege of crafting compelling stories for industry-leading brands such as Dell, Prime Video, Royal Canin, TikTok, and UNICEF. Throughout a busy yet fulfilling year, the team worked on diverse initiatives, including organizing a Manila food crawl to help grow TikTok’s food content category, hosting high-profile press conferences to spotlight Prime Video’s latest shows, crafting expert content and media events for Royal Canin to educate Filipinos on responsible pet ownership, and driving impactful communications to amplify UNICEF’s critical work in promoting children’s rights.
“Over the past year, we’ve had the honor of running exciting and impactful campaigns that resonated with audiences and helped our clients fulfill their purpose. Looking ahead, we aim to continue pushing the boundaries of creativity and channeling our collective efforts into projects that not only communicate, but also inspire and make positive impact,” said Briones.
If you’re interested in knowing more about our work in the Philippines, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or you can fill out our Contact Form.
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