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Visit Scotland | Alba

Communicating your journey to net zero

Your journey to becoming net zero is a powerful and beneficial story to share with your staff, customers, partners, and other stakeholders. 

Surveys from a range of sectors including tourism, are showing that demand from customers for businesses to act sustainably is increasing year on year.   

This page gives you tips and ideas on how to communicate your story in the right way to the right audiences. 

Benefits to telling your story


Improve your reputation with customers, local community and other businesses


Attract new or retain great staff


Reduce your business running costs


Attract new customers

1. Internal communications

As you begin looking at environmental issues, engaging with your staff on sustainability ambitions and actions can help support: 

  • development of innovative ideas
  • successful implementation of actions
  • staff retention and recruitment

Employee communications

Here are some tips for raising awareness and engaging with your staff:

  • Employee communication

    Talk to staff and volunteers about your journey to net zero. Employee awareness and engagement with your environmental activities will impact on your net zero commitment and the successful implementation of any actions.


  • Staff training

    Key to ongoing success to implement any responsible low carbon practices will be staff training and that everyone working for the business at all levels understands the ambition as well as the practical action they need to take while at work.

  • Establish a Green Team

    Create a “Green Team”. They will help manage and drive sustainable initiatives and projects. Increase employee engagement and morale and helping identify new ideas and solutions.

  • Sustainability policy

    Create a one page sustainability policy statement that provides a brief overview of your targets, goals, and milestones. Set out how you plan to achieve them and how your internal and external stakeholders can support.  

  • Share access to free resources

    You can access free resources from organisations such as Zero Waste Scotland, SEPA, and Energy Saving Trust. Encourage your staff to use them too.  

2. External communications

Here are some tips and ideas on how to share your story with your customers, stakeholders and wider community: 

  • Commit to net zero

    Declare your commitment to net zero. Share your sustainability or environmental policy online. Explain why sustainability and the journey to net zero is important to you and highlight how you’re working to reduce your environmental impact. 

    Consider signing up to The Glasgow Declaration on Climate Action in Tourism to make a public commitment to climate action aligned with the global ambition. Take advantage of  the profile and opportunities to learn and collaborate.  

  • Share your accomplishments

    Share your story on your social media and website to highlight your commitment and progress. Create a Green Content plan to ensure the delivery of consistent, positive messaging. This will also help to keep momentum and maintain stakeholder interest.  

    Don’t forget to celebrate what you’ve achieved and the people who help you to achieve it. 

  • Avoid "Green Washing"

    Be honest and transparent to avoid “Green Washing”. Acknowledge that you’re on a journey by providing straightforward evidence and information to support what you’re saying. Customers and stakeholders, and the wider community, don’t expect perfection, but they do expect integrity and honesty.  

    Be willing to engage and be open to discussion and feedback. 

  • Join a "Green Scheme"

    Join a green certification scheme. This will provide you with a framework for your sustainability actions. Plus, a credible, independently verified badge to use in your customer promotion.  

  • Share sustainable credentials

    Are you working with online travel agents (OTAs)? Find out how they can promote your sustainability credentials to their customers. For example,, Google and Expedia are providing an opportunity for accommodation providers to promote themselves as sustainable.  

  • Get involved in campaigns

    There's a huge range of international and national campaigns that you can get involved in and encourage your customers to engage with. Supporting bigger campaigns can help your sustainability goals and give you content for your communications channels.  

  • Create a visitor charter

    A visitor charter can engage your customers to support sustainable actions taken in your business and the wider destination. The charter should be meaningful and relevant to customers and let them know why the actions are important. You can include customers in the charter to encourage or challenge them to follow the same principles at home. 

    You can hightlight our responsible tourism promise and check out the recommendations in our responsible tourism: visitor guide for businesses.

3. Opportunities for collaboration

Working towards net zero is not something that can be achieved through one business or initiative. The key to making progress together, as a sector and destination, at the pace and scale required is to share our stories and to collaborate. 

Start a conversation about climate change  

Work with other businesses in your sector, your supply chain and your destination. Start talking about climate change and share ideas and examples of what worked and didn’t work on your journey. 

Sharing your experiences and ideas, will support others on their journey, foster collaboration, enable more innovative solutions, and ensure that we learn from each other.

Here are some tip and ideas on how you can collaborate with others on your net zero journey.

  • Join your sector organisation

    Join your sector organisation for advice and support on a range of topics. Also, a great opportunity to network and collaborate on taking climate action. 

  • Work with other businesses

    Connect with other tourism businesses from all different sectors in your destination. This can be invaluable to not only promote the destination but ensure the positive impact of tourism is maximised for each business as well as the community and local environment. Join your local destination management organisation to find out more.  

  • Work with your suppliers

    This will be key to reduce your own emissions. Get in touch with them share and your net zero journey. Ask about their own net zero journey and what their biggest challenges are. There may be opportunities to work together to find innovative solutions that benefit all involved.  

  • Think globally

    Look beyond Scotland’s shores and join organisations and communities focusing on sustainability and climate action. For example, Tourism Declares. A global community of tourism organisations, companies, and professionals, who are committed to delivering a climate action plan aligned with the need to cut emissions significantly over the next decade.  

    Visit the Tourism Declares website for more information.

4. Communications checklist

Our 5.0 Communications checklist aims to provide you with the basis of a net zero communication strategy. It will help you consider your communications to a range of audience: your staff, your customers, your suppliers, and your peers.

5.0 Communication checklist workbook

Published March 2023

5. Further advice and support