Carolyn McMaster | June 17, 2015
Don’t just think your communications are credible—know they are.
Evaluating the credibility of your communications based on insider impressions is like evaluating children’s talents based on their parents’ observations—the conclusion is bound to reflect a partisan bias. The Thinkshift® Credibility Quotient™, a standards-based rating system, gives you a more objective way to assess credibility. Using the system, we score your website, report or other communications on 10 factors integral to credibility. We weight these scores according to the importance of each factor, and then add them up to produce an overall Credibility Quotient.
The Credibility Quotient report details strengths and weaknesses related to each factor, revealing missed opportunities and providing a road map for boosting credibility. We always consider context, such as public concerns and your competitive environment, and can even rate your competitors’ communications to show you how you stack up.
Credibility is ever more important for marketing sustainable products and services. Why? Here are a few factors.
Lack of trust. Green claims are viewed with extreme skepticism, and the 2014 study Claiming Green: The Influence of Green Product Claims on Purchase Intent and Brand Perception found that misleading or confusing claims can ding brand perception. The more credible you are, the more people will trust you.
Confusion reigns. There’s a plethora of terms, labels and choices—despite many efforts, there are few globally recognized communications standards. Greenwashing and inaccuracy impede understanding of sustainability issues and environmental impacts; credible, accurate communication can help people make the best choices.
Greenwashing charges stick. If you’re more credible and accurate, it’s a lot less likely that you’ll be accused of greenwashing. If that happens, customers, partners and other stakeholders will lose faith in you. And the competition will jump all over you. In addition, the Federal Trade Commission has revised its green marketing guidelines and appears to be cracking down on inaccurate claims.