On Sustainability’s Updates

6 Ways To Make Brand Sustainability Resonate With Consumers

 fastcoexist.com | Original Article | by Morgan Clendaniel, ed.

Most consumers don't pay attention to sustainability claims from brands, and for good reason--there's a lot of greenwashing out there. Here's how companies can break through the noise.

Climate change. Resource scarcity. Pollution. Human rights. These are some of the most pressing issues facing business today. They are also some of the most difficult for consumers to relate to, let alone orient their lives around.

According to a recent report from The World Economic Forum and Accenture, sustainability is in desperate need of a makeover. Despite millions of dollars spent marketing the concept over the past decade, only 28% of people know what terms such as “sustainable,” “responsible,” “eco friendly” and “green” really mean, and just 44% say they trust green claims coming from big brands.

“Business needs to use language that is more familiar, (as) insufficient consumer understanding contributes to a lack of trust,” the report says. “Consumers need to be more excited and motivated by sustainability.”

For many businesses, exciting and motivating consumers about sustainability is no easy task. That’s not only because, as the report points out, most struggle to tell their stories using down-to-earth language. It’s also because the industry’s standard arsenal of communication tools remains dry and impersonal. Only a fraction of consumers bother to read through corporate reports, web sites or press releases, so it’s no surprise that the concept isn’t resonating better. Read More...