Earth Day – Comsumer Products

Bizmology

Business insights and opinions from the Editors of Hoover’s

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Earth Day Check-In: Makers of Consumer Products Work to Move Green to Mainstream

by Catherine Colbert, April 21st, 2011, Thursday.

As companies roll out their Earth Day marketing messages to tout their sustainable sentiments, a recent study asserts that green consumer products remain a niche market despite efforts by manufacturers to focus more on making and marketing eco-conscious items.

 OgilvyEarth, a unit of brand-development firm Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide, has conducted 1,800 interviews since September 2010 across San Francisco, Chicago, and the New York metropolitan area. The outcome — Mainstream Green: Moving sustainability from niche to normal – is a report that helps to explain why a consumer’s good green intentions often produce a contradictory action. OgilvyEarth has assisted companies, such as Coca-Cola, the Environmental Defense Fund, Kraft, and IBM, to use the topic of sustainability to drive the value of their brands.

The study’s somewhat daunting takeaway message is that there’s a growing green gap in America between the 16% of Super Green consumers — who are dedicated to fulfilling their eco-friendly intentions — and everyone else. Consumers who can’t or aren’t willing to pay extra for a product that’s good for the Earth are ultimately left to feel alienated and increasingly guilty for not doing so. Other noteworthy findings: 82% of those interviewed didn’t know how to estimate their carbon footprint and the same percentage believed that being an eco-conscious consumer is “more feminine than masculine,” as women lead the Super Green group.    

Image © Rolffimages | Dreamstime.com

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