Los Altos, CA (PRWEB) August 6, 2008
EcoUnit, the rewards program connecting consumers with environmentally-responsible products and services, announced the results of its "Consumer Awareness" survey which was sent to its members in July 2008. The EcoUnit membership base, a cross-section of North American consumers across geographies, genders, and ages, serves as a ready-made online community for businesses looking to better understand the pace and extent of consumers' intentions to become more environmentally responsible, particularly in how they choose which products to buy and where to buy them. EcoUnit's proprietary "green categorization" provides insights into how various issues are perceived by hard core environmentalists ("dark greens") versus the vast majority of consumers who have just recently awakened to our planet's challenges ("light greens").
"We are excited about the implications of the study," said Kent Ragen, CEO of EcoUnit. "Clearly, consumer perceptions and expectations are changing as they become more aware of our environmental challenges. On the bright side, this opens interesting opportunities to innovative companies who want to make the environment an important part of the relationship with their customers. At the same time, the study indicates that continued education is required before most consumers will appreciate the importance of lifestyle changes that we all simply must make."
Several interesting findings from the survey include:
•A majority of respondents were unaware that the U.S. is responsible for approximately 30% of the CO2 in the planet's atmosphere; that on a per capita basis Americans emit 5x more CO2 than the global average; and that 5 planets would be required to support a global population who live like Americans. In all areas a majority of respondents underestimated America's relative toll on the earth.
•Fully 93% of respondents view general environmental sustainability as of equal or greater importance when compared to the specific challenge of global warming. There is a strong correlation between the relative importance of global warming and the more "dark green" environmentalists.
•When asked how likely they would be to switch the company that they patronize if another in the same industry provided an eco-friendly alternative and rewarded them when they chose that alternative, the results were astounding. In virtually all industries there exists an overwhelming bias to do business with eco-conscious companies. Results for retailers in the electronics and grocery industries were consistent, with roughly 67% of respondents reporting they would "definitely change", 30% "might change", and only 3% would "definitely not change". The hotel industry, long-invested in building brand loyalty, fared little better. And even banks, an industry with relatively low attrition rates, should beware - the results show that 47% would "definitely change", 42% "might change", and only 11% would "definitely not change".
EcoUnit's CEO encouraged marketers to review and discuss the complete survey results within their own organization. "The results of this survey show that there is a huge opportunity in every consumer-facing industry for market leaders to develop programs that leverage the environment. The majority of companies have spent the early years of the green revolution looking inward; and in many cases this was appropriate, because huge environmental gains can be garnered by changing facilities, supply chains, and employee behaviors. But few companies have extended their eco-programs to connect with their customers. Consumer perceptions and expectations are changing as awareness levels rise, and now every company needs to explore how they can partner with their customers around the environment. Today it's an opportunity, but tomorrow it will be a threat." Companies can contact EcoUnit directly at http://www.ecounit.com to request a presentation of the complete results.
EcoUnit is the rewards program connecting consumers with environmentally-responsible products and services. EcoUnit's mission is to mobilize these connections to accelerate the introduction of more sustainable products and business practices. EcoUnit rewards its members for participating in programs including online surveys, product testing, and taking various eco-friendly actions. EcoUnit works with its corporate partners to develop programs that motivate customers to take discrete eco-friendly actions that both help the environment and the bottom line. For more information visit http://www.ecounit.com.