'GOING Green' Bandwagon Stalls Among Consumers

-- Only a Moderate Concern, Not a Major Issue, Yankelovich Survey Finds --

-- Have Marketers Bet Too Much on Green? --

Aug 13, 2007, 01:00 ET from Yankelovich, Inc.

    CHAPEL HILL, N.C., Aug. 13 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Despite
 unwavering focus by the media, government and business, "going green" is
 only of moderate concern to most consumers, according to Yankelovich
 research. Yankelovich's survey of 2,763 consumers and their environmental
 attitudes, GOING Green, released today, found that only one-third (34%) of
 consumers feel much more concerned about environmental issues today than a
 year ago. And less than one-quarter (22%) of consumers feel they can make a
 difference when it comes to the environment.
     GOING Green, conducted in collaboration with Getty Images, is the first
 study of its kind to examine how much consumers truly care about green
     "Consumers are not drinking the Kool-Aid when it comes to green," said
 J. Walker Smith, president of Yankelovich. "While they're highly aware of
 environmental issues due to the glut of media attention, the simple fact is
 that 'going green' in their everyday life is simply not a big concern or a
 high priority."
     Take Al Gore's book, An Inconvenient Truth. Even though it received
 widespread acclaim from media and scientists alike, 82% of consumers
 neither saw the film nor read it. In addition, Mr. Smith asserts that
 consumers are far more knowledgeable about green than they're generally
 given credit for. For example, Al Gore's "10 Myths" in An Inconvenient
 Truth are not considered myths by consumers at all. According to the GOING
 Green Survey: only 7% of consumers believe Gore's "Myth" that it's already
 too late to do something about climate change; only 4% believe global
 warming is a good thing, and only 8% agree that the warming that scientists
 are recording is just the effect of cities trapping heat rather than
 anything to do with greenhouse gases.
     Despite most consumers' lukewarm attitudes about "going green," Smith
 says that companies can -- and should -- exploit the "green-ness" of their
 products. Why? First, while the environment is not a mainstream consumer
 concern, it does represent a niche opportunity in the marketplace, with
 just over 30 million Americans (13% of the 234 million people 16+)
 "strongly concerned" about it.
     Second -- and equally important -- if organizations are required to
 meet strict federal and state environmental regulations -- often at huge
 expense -- it makes sense to try and leverage the 'new and improved' green
 product to consumers. The good news for companies is that while the
 majority of consumers' attitudes towards the environment may be only of
 moderate concern, it is possible to change consumers' behavior so that the
 green attributes of a product become a key feature in the buying decision.
     "Where companies are currently falling short with their green marketing
 strategy is that they're failing to establish a personal connection with
 the consumer, in other words, consumers currently have no knowledge of what
 green means or has to offer to them," added Smith. The Yankelovich
 Marketing Action Framework below illustrates the degree to which all
 consumers -- from "Green- less" to "Green-Enthusiasts" -- are currently
 likely to buy a product based on its green features.
         Green-        Green-         Green-         Green-         Green-
          less          bits          steps          speaks       thusiasts
           29%           19%            25%            15%            13%
         Lowest      Behaviors       Moderate      Behaviors       Highest
       Attitudes    Higher Than     Attitudes        Lower        Attitudes
        & Lowest       Lower        & Moderate     Than High      & Highest
       Behaviors     Attitudes      Behaviors      Attitudes      Behaviors
       ..........    ..........     ..........     ..........     ..........
       Unmoved by    Don't care       Aware,     Talk the talk   Environment
     environmental  but doing a     concerned,     more than         is a
        issues &     few things    taking steps  walk the walk    passionate
         alarms                                                    concern
     "To make a green marketing strategy successful, organizations must
 employ behavioral tactics that move consumers up the continuum to greater
 levels of 'green-ness,'" said Smith. "Marketers who focus on these segments
 in isolation will not change consumers' green behavior."
     About the Study
     Yankelovich's GOING Green Perspective surveyed 2,763 nationally
 represented consumers aged 16+. The data collection phase of this study ran
 from April 25 through May 7, 2007. References to "Americans," "consumers"
 or "people" throughout this report refer to the total population of
 consumers aged 16+ unless otherwise noted.
     About Yankelovich, Inc.
     Yankelovich delivers measurable breakthroughs in marketing productivity
 for its clients. For more than 30 years, The Yankelovich MONITOR(R) has
 tracked and forecasted consumer value and lifestyle trends. Our Insights
 Integration(sm) solutions directly link our key research findings on why
 people buy to databases of customers and prospects. The Segmentation
 Company (TSC) is a full-service custom research and consulting firm that
 helps clients precisely target their customers through segmentation and
 brand equity and positioning work. Yankelovich and TSC are headquartered in
 Chapel Hill, NC.

SOURCE Yankelovich, Inc.