Meet AIM: the Aspiration Impact Measurement

The past generation has seen a Conscience Revolution among people in America and around the world. Today, as never before, people seek to factor in the ethics of businesses as they make their daily purchasing decisions. More than a third of younger Americans (and more than a quarter of Americans overall) are more likely to purchase products from a company operating responsibly.(1)

Unfortunately, consumers have only had the ability to make a best guess at how businesses act towards the environment and their employees based on press coverage and reputation. It’s been almost impossible to know how companies actually behave. Until now.

Meet AIM (Aspiration Impact Measurement), a new feature of the Aspiration bank account. It lets you see your own personal Sustainability Score – the impact you’re making on People and the Planet based on where you’re shopping and spending every day.

We’ve put People and Planet scores right into your Aspiration Summit Checking app, so it’s easy to get started: Just use your Aspiration debit card at an AIM scored merchant to see how they treat their employees, customers, and the environment!

To create AIM scores, we’ve looked at over 75,000 data points for thousands of businesses. The more you use your Aspiration debit card, the more you’ll be able to see the impact of your spending, track it over time, and compare your score with that of your friends.

AIM is something historic and new. Never before have people been able to see the impact of their everyday spending. And it’s a work in progress. That’s why we make it easy for you to tweet at companies to get them to publicly share their sustainability data. We also make it easy for local businesses to report their own impact. And we look forward to getting your ideas and feedback on how AIM can continue to improve.

Every day, Americans spend $36 billion. Money talks. When we factor a company’s conscience into our daily purchasing decisions, we can help save the planet and make a positive difference in people’s lives.

A quarter of Americans and 36 percent of younger Americans believe that they can “have a significant positive impact through their spending decisions.”(2) They’re right. In fact, a recent study by scholars from Yale, George Mason, and the University of Texas demonstrated that consumers have more power than they think.(3)

In this day and age, progress on challenges like climate change or human rights or income equality won’t come from Washington D.C. It will happen when each of us makes our voice heard to the companies with which we do business and vote with our pocketbooks. We have that power – and we have that personal responsibility to use it.

From the British anti-slavery sugar campaigns to the Montgomery Bus Boycott, we’ve seen the impact of consumers throughout history. By giving customers information so that they can make their spending decisions based on not only cost, convenience, and quality but also conscience, AIM gives every American a lever with which they can change the world.

Learn more or get started.

(1) 2015 Cone Millennial CSR Study

(2) 2015 Cone Millennial CSR Study

(3) 2015 Cone Millennial CSR Study Roser-Renouf, Atkinson, Maibach and Leiserowitz, "The Consumer as Climate Activist," International Journal of Communication, 10(2016), 4759–4783 1932–8036/20160005

Andrei Cherny