Study Identifies 4 Types of Green Consumers; 1 Group Most Likely to Respond to Green Marketing

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Green consumers mean big business, an estimated 500 billion dollars in 2008. But according to a recent study released by Experian Local Market Services, only a small segment of green consumers, known as behavioral greens, are likely to spend the extra cash on environmentally-friendly products and services. Before marketers and advertisers fully invest in the trend to be green, they need to know how to reach these new green consumers in national and local markets. Free download: http://www.smrb.com/greenmarketing.

Green consumers mean big business, an estimated 500 billion dollars in 2008. But according to a recent study released by Experian Local Market Services, only a small segment of green consumers, known as behavioral greens, are likely to spend the extra cash on environmentally-friendly products and services. Before marketers and advertisers fully invest in the trend to be green, they need to know how to reach these new green consumers in national and local markets.

Find out where the greenest-to-brownest consumers reside. Download free consumer profile map from Experian Research Services: http://www.smrb.com/greenmarketing.

Chris Wilson, president of Experian Research Services, explains that mass marketing may not be the best option for companies that want to reach green consumers in local markets. "Marketers and advertisers will need a targeted strategy to engage green consumers," explained Wilson. "For example, not all media markets contain 'behavioral greens' and some markets have a higher concentration over others. The greenest markets are unique in their media and purchasing behaviors and are 33 percent more likely to avoid watching television commercials and are 40 percent more likely to shop online than before," said Wilson.

In contrast to behavioral greens, the study suggests that potential greens and true browns aren't as inclined to respond to green marketing and invest in environmentally-safe products and services, browns being the least receptive. Hear Angelika Kaprelian, product manager of Experian Research Services, describe these different segments: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lNuZ_Jx_Glk

  • Behavioral Greens: Consumers who think and act green. They have negative attitudes towards products that pollute the environment and incorporate green practices on a regular basis.
  • Think Greens: Consumers who think like green consumers but don't always necessarily act green.
  • Potential Greens: Consumers who don't behave or think along environmentally conscious lines but remain on the fence about key green issues.
  • True Browns: Consumers who aren't environmentally conscious and may actually have negative attitudes towards media with a heavy environmental focus.

Experian Research Services' study further illustrates that potential green consumers are declining and are likely migrating into the true brown or greener categories. Watch Angelika Kaprelian, product manager of Experian Research Services, give tips on how businesses can market to green consumers: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jBF60vjTLn8

There is a real opportunity for companies to engage green consumers. During a presentation made by Irene Stillings, Executive Director for the California Center for Sustainable Energy, an Institute of Grocery Distribution (IGD) survey found that 15 percent of consumers can't find [ethical products] on the shelf in [their] supermarket and 14 percent of consumers do not have ethical products available at [their] retailer. The consumers who will most impact the bottom line of companies going green are those that consciously choose to purchase from greener companies and others who are willing to go out of their way to purchase green products.

A September 10, 2007 article in BtoB Magazine explained that as more companies join the green movement, the products and services they provide will help convert those consumers who may only be thinking green but not acting green. Moreover, ECOMALL, a website dedicated to helping save the Earth, stated that organizations proactively extending their range of products or services to cater to this growing segment often find they can reach new prospects, often a more affluent segment of shoppers, and generate higher profit margins in addition to added revenue.

Wilson added that the increased importance of being able to identify those consumers who are willing to either pay more or expend more effort in keeping their buying behavior consistent with their green attitudes creates a huge demand for more granular segmentation and targeting. "Which consumers are only thinking green? Which consumers are actually acting green? Who will be the most receptive audience for a green message or a new greener product or service?" asked Wilson.

Earlier this month, Experian Research Services announced its new segmentation marketing system called GreenAware™ to address green marketing opportunities. It uses key environmentally-relevant measurements in Simmons' National Consumer Study identifying the four distinct groups and offers profiles about their lifestyle, media and buying behaviors.

GreenAware's development was based on consumer survey responses in the National Consumer Study. Thousands of variables, including questions targeted toward environmental concerns and issues, as well as consumer buying decisions, were utilized in creating the segmentation. The depth and breadth of data used in the development of GreenAware comes together to create a more robust and accurate marketing and attitudinal picture of consumers related to the "green" trend.

Experian Local Market Services delivers twice as many markets, three times the consumer data (60,000 data variables) and sample sizes five times larger than competitive offerings. Its services include targeted consumer and business marketing lists, geographic mapping analysis, local market consumer research and geographic/ socio-economic segmentation. (For more details, visit us at http://www.smrb.com).

Experian Research Services: The mission of the group is to enable clients to optimize communications with their customers and prospects across multiple channels by providing a robust description of the American Consumer. Experian Research Services operates: Simmons (a full service, consumer research organization that has been The Voice of the American Consumer for over 50 years) and Vente, a real-time online quality lead generation service. In 2006, Experian Research Services was ranked the fastest growing market research company by Jack Honomichl, the leading market research industry authority.

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VALERIE JENNINGS
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