7 tips for communica­ting with "DGNB"

How can you use the DGNB profitably in your communication? We tell you what you should bear in mind.

You want to use DGNB in your own communication? But you lack ideas and experience on how best to do this? We can reassure you: You are not alone in this. Many PR and marketing managers who get in touch with the DGNB for the first time are initially a little overwhelmed by the variety of topics and contact points. After all, the DGNB offers an enormous amount of opportunities in the broad field of sustainable building, depending on which part of the construction and real estate industry your company belongs to.

It already starts with the question of whether you would rather achieve PR effects, need input for your sustainability communication, want to strengthen recruiting or primarily pursue marketing or sales goals. To help you get started, we have put together some guidance here to help you get your bearings.

Construction is diverse, individual and complex. It brings together a large number of different expertise. And the opportunities to use the DGNB for yourself and to communicate your own commitment are as diverse as the industry. So which of these is interesting for you?

On the one hand, there are a number of basics that you should fundamentally know and use. You can use our different logos in a variety of ways. For example, our style guide for members provides an overview.

You should also have a well-maintained member profile. We are happy to record video statements to enhance member profiles, for example, at various DGNB events. Network with us via social media. We are particularly active on our LinkedIn channel.

And if you are looking more in the direction of marketing and sales opportunities, there are options for sponsorships and partnerships at various events such as the DGNB Sustainability Day. This also applies to selected trade fairs such as BAU in Munich.

The DGNB enjoys a very high reputation in the public perception and stands for ambition and holism. Therefore, it can be interesting for you to make references to the DGNB in your own communication by referencing our sustainability approach. Some companies have already done this in their mission statements published online or in their CSR reports. A tip here: We like to translate sustainability as "quality + future viability". This helps when someone comes to you and says: "Sustainability is everything and nothing anyway and only greenwashing".

Also browse through our various pages under the navigation point Sustainable Building, where we present important partial aspects of sustainability. Pick up the topic that best suits your activities. And also take a look at our reports, which offer a low-threshold introduction to our subject area. You are welcome to use diagrams and graphics from them in your communication.

Architecture, planning and engineering offices will find further points of contact in the Phase Sustainability initiative initiated by the DGNB. The Climate Positive Cities and Communities initiative offers similar opportunities for municipalities.

In order to not only scratch the surface of sustainable building and DGNB-related communication, it is worthwhile to train your own employees specifically on these topics. The DGNB Academy offers corresponding opportunities here.

Having someone with the relevant expertise internally can be doubly worthwhile for you. On the one hand, to be able to act as a sparring partner in the creation of technical communication content. Numerous companies have developed customer brochures that highlight their own products or services in the context of DGNB Certification. On the other hand, you have the chance to use the qualified persons as corporate influencers for recruiting communication. In this way, you can credibly present that you as an organisation are committed to more sustainability and invest in corresponding further training.

One key to profitable communication with the DGNB brand is appropriate storytelling. Especially in connection with certification, there are often starting points. Is it the first DGNB-certified project at a location? Did it score particularly well in the assessment of certain criteria? Was there an additional DGNB Diamond or Climate Positive award?

Since journalists in particular, but also the wider professional public, are now familiar with what lies behind the DGNB requirements and can therefore classify it correctly, there is a great chance of generating attention with an appropriately prepared message.

The same applies to social media communication. An enormous number of different storytelling approaches can be pursued here. In principle, there is a story behind every single criterion of DGNB Certification. After all, it is the interaction of these requirements that makes a property a demonstrably sustainable building.

To implement sustainable building in practice, you need people with expertise. Let them speak in your mind and include them in your communication. Whether with quotes for your press release, guest articles in your own media, as a source of inspiration in your sustainability report or as a discussion partner in your podcast: we would be happy to support you with the voices of our experts from the DGNB team or our Board of Directors.

Have you been involved in a DGNB-certified project? Then let the corresponding DGNB Auditor speak for you. Such an appropriate professional classification brings the corresponding credibility behind the sustainability quality you have achieved.

Are you planning your own event dealing with sustainable building issues and would like someone from the DGNB to attend? No problem. Simply send your specific request to our speaker service and we will promptly check whether someone from our team can participate. This way you can add value to your event with the DGNB.

The most convincing form of sustainability communication is one in which the quality of sustainable construction can be experienced in person. We know what we are talking about, after all, we had the conversion of our own office in Stuttgart certified ourselves and use it as a Living Showroom for Sustainable Building. Numerous delegations have already visited us and experienced directly what is involved in sustainable building and what added value it creates. By the way, you can also rent our premises. DGNB lectures and guided tours of the Living Showroom included.

But back to you: Having employees who are happy and satisfied working in your office is perhaps the best marketing investment you can make. And we know from numerous examples that working in DGNB-certified buildings can contribute to this. And it doesn't always have to be a large new building. With a DGNB Certification for Buildings in Use, you can systematically put your owner-occupied properties on the path to climate neutrality. A strong element for your sustainability communication.

And one last tip: There are always new things happening at the DGNB. Keep yourself up to date by subscribing to our newsletters, reading our blog or our publications. Also visit our events to get informed or inspired. For example, there is the DGNB regulars' table "Sustainabiliy communication" especially for PR and marketing managers. The winners of the DGNB Sustainability Challenge will show you what is possible if you are courageous and innovative.

Also seek personal exchange with like-minded people at one of the numerous DGNB networking events such as the DGNB Sustainability Day or DGNB out and about. Here you are guaranteed to be shown new perspectives again and again. The number of partnerships that have resulted from such events is large - with corresponding potential for joint communication.

Your contact

Felix Jansen

Director PR, Communications and Marketing