Role: Editor, hired writers, oversaw contracts and budget, hosted webinar

Overview of the collaboration (site and materials no longer exist online)
The objective was to create both a library of editorially independent, quality content that could be used for inbound marketing to DuPont’s customers and prospects, and a thriving online community driven by daily blog content that provided an ongoing brand presence for DuPont in the area of business sustainability and a platform for DuPont thought-leadership.

Strategy
Social Media Today engaged with client DuPont Sustainable Solutions to create a global, influencer-driven dialogue on the subject areas core to DuPont’s business, including issues of safety and operational security, corporate social responsibility, technology and innovation, environmental stewardship, and culture and leadership in business, and build a new understanding of each of these areas as pillars of the larger concept of business sustainability. The challenges were to build awareness of business sustainability as thus defined, to associate this theme with the DuPont brand, to build positions of thought-leadership for DuPont leaders, and to allow DuPont to connect with other influencers in business sustainability in a credible, editorially independent forum.

Research
We sought to reach and interact with influencers and leading thinkers in the various realms of business sustainability, as well as corporate decision-makers interested in making their own companies more sustainable, in each sense of the word.

In our initial review and outreach to influencers discussing business sustainability, we found that distinct interpretations of the phase were prevalent. Many discussed “green” business or environmental stewardship, and others talked about business sustainability as simply referring to profitability or longevity, but few saw these ideas as related – in fact, some saw them as quite at odds with each other. One challenge was to convey that the Sustainable Business Forum sought to build a community devoted to discussing ways in which goals like environmental stewardship, social responsibility, healthy work cultures, and safe, responsible operating practices can not only coexist with business success but can and should be essential parts of the roadmap to profit. Once established, the idea had a clear appeal.

Execution
Launch was accompanied by the first of our ongoing webinar series, opening with the question: “Can businesses do well by doing good?”, and partnering with established publisher TriplePundit.com. Since then, the Sustainable Business Forum has produced five webinars and three e-books, continued to engage with thought leaders, and build both its content base and audience.

In addition to seeking out and republishing the best independent professionals with existing blogs, Sustainable Business Forum commissions exclusive content from some of the foremost thinkers in sustainability.

Series included:
Reporting: How They Do It: A weekly series by sustainability report analyst Elaine Cohen (Israel) in which she reviews major company CSR reports for clarity, transparency, unique initiatives, and overall ambition. While technical in nature, she writes in a way accessible to the average business reader, creating both industry feedback and educating the reader as to what makes a quality sustainability report.

Women and Sustainability: Market researcher and writer Andrea Learned explores all aspects of women in the sustainability field, from CEOs to women-driven business initiatives. She  also interview prominent women in the field. This is a monthly column.

Sustainable Leadership: Executive coach Ted Coine tackles how a professional can lead well in the rapidly changing and sometimes ambiguous field of sustainability. Topics include defining who is a sustainability leader regardless of title, how to network actively outside the field, and successful employee programs. This is a bi-monthly column.

Social Media and Transparency: This weekly column is comprised of writers from around the world addressing the state of social media in their respective countries and how companies can engage their region of the world. Companies who are uncertain about how to approach customers via social media, unclear in their messaging, or facing a crisis are each addressed by writers from England, Spain, India, and more.