Green Product Claims: It’s Not Nice to Fool Mother Nature…or Your Clients

We all hate being mislead/misinformed about things we buy. We all have our favorite brand-name products and we trust (for the most part) the integrity of the ingredients and manufacturing process that produces these products. Surely with all of the government oversite, regulation, taxation, certification (can you think of a “tion” word?), we can trust the products we buy and what the advertisers say about them. Unfortunately, we all know of a product that did not live up to its claim in one form or another, and green products and services do not escape this scrutiny and criticism.

Green signage claims do not escape the consumer’s microscope of scrutiny. Tread carefully if you see proclamations that interior or exterior signage is “LEED certified.” It’s a false statement. Signage is not LEED certified — a project can earn LEED certification, and signage can be part of that project, but the signage itself is not LEED certified. Make sense?

For architectural signage — interior or exterior — if you are looking for an eco-friendly solution, you should consider the function, the materials, the finish and the fabrication process that comprise the sign. In addition, look for certifications from reputable institutes like GREENGUARD or SCS or FSC. Avoid “Bob’s Green Seal of Approval.” That was a joke.

Check out this great article from BusinessJournalism.org titled “As Earth day Approaches, Dig Into Company’s Green Claims,” by Melissa Preddy. Check out this key excerpt from the article and be sure to download and review the survey results. You might find them eye-opening.

“Consumers are taking note of green claims by businesses but often are misunderstanding them, according to the 2011 Cone Green Gap Trend Tracker report, released March 28 by the Boston-based Cone research group.  And, the study finds, consumer ire over what they feel are misleading or confusing claims can really backfire on companies.  Here’s the survey fact sheet; it includes some detailed information about how often shoppers say they consider green factors.”

For other green-related topics, check out these recent posts:

Green: Everyone Wants It, No One Wants to Pay for It

GREENGUARD Certified Signage Solution for Midwest University

Healing-Focused Healthcare Environments Featuring Eco-Friendly Materials

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