The Fake News Effect and Corporate Sustainability

27 Feb 14:00 by Katie Pereira

Trust in news reporting and governments has taken a nose-dive in recent months, trust in the media has decreased from 36% to 24% in 2017, and the 'fake news' effect is taking its toll on leading brands too.

Research by IPSOS Connect and Trinity Mirror show that 70% of consumers don’t trust advertising and 42% distrust brands.  

So where does this leave Corporate Sustainability?

Brand is all about consumer trust and companies can live or die on their reputations.  More and more customers are demanding sustainability be built into their brands, from the ban on the use of microbeads to pressure to use recyclable packaging, consumers can really exert collective influence on brands to make positive changes.

For future generations, sustainable products and corporate responsibility really matters.

In 2015, Nielson published its annual Global Corporate Sustainability Report. It indicated that, globally, 66% of consumers are willing to spend more on a product if it comes from a sustainable brand. Millennials gave an even more impressive showing, with 73% of surveyed millennials indicating a similar preference.

Forbes says that “Millennials prefer to do business with corporations and brands with pro-social messages, sustainable manufacturing methods and ethical business standards.”

Clear messages and practical changes win public support.  Adidas UltraBoosts are trainers made in partnership with Parley, from 80% ocean plastic.  The range is proving to be successful and they are looking to make 5 million in 2018. This doesn’t make Adidas a ‘green company’ but it does give the customer the option to buy a shoe which is taking rubbish out of the sea and creating a great trainer from it, which has a positive impact on the environment.

Now is the time for Corporate Sustainability to combat the ‘fake news effect’.  There is a captive audience who want to buy environmentally responsible products and brands need to ensure they are transparent with consumers to regain their trust.


To discuss recruitment or jobs across the Sustainability sector, contact Katie Pereira at ALLEN & YORK

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