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HOW IS CONSUMER “GREEN CONFIDENCE” MEASURED
A new tool called the “Green Confidence Index” is an ongoing market survey from greenbiz.com, that looks at how buyers perceive green companies and groups, and what causes that view to change.


> The Responsibility component asks how well various groups and institutions are addressing environmental issues—too much, enough, or too little. The groups include the U.S. government, state and local governments, major corporations, individuals’ own employers, their neighbors and themselves.


> The Information component asks whether respondents feel they have sufficient information about environmental issues and solutions to make informed decisions when purchasing consumables (groceries, personal care, apparel, household care, office supplies) and “big ticket” items (household appliances, electronics and cars), as well as when voting and investing.


> The Purchasing component assesses green purchases made over the past year as well as anticipated green purchases over the next 12 months for three broad product categories, including food, personal and household care items, and “big ticket” items, including home purchasing and renovation, as well as purchases of vehicles and major appliances.


Source: www.greenbiz.com/intelligence/greenconfidence


 


Seekers 33%


Skeptics 28%


Actives 23%


Indifferents 16%


 


Is the Industry on Track?
Based on Shelton’s research, how well is the homebuilding industry promoting and “packaging” the transition to green products and design? We recently conducted a study of the industry, asking builders, architects and green product manufacturers how they see the future.


First, there’s some good news for green product makers. Architects, builders and other pros are not as jaded as the mainstream. Only about 24% have a negative view of green messaging.


Also, 60% of housing professionals believe that consumer confidence is the key to energizing the green housing market. If that’s the case, it follows that creating that “good feeling” around green products and lifestyles should be a top priority of any marketing effort. If you doubt that this model can work, take a look at the Coca Cola company. They’ve been selling a lifestyle—not a sugar and water soft drink— for decades.


Another interesting observation we can glean from Shelton’s research is that Americans are not as different as they appear on the surface. Those who portray the United States as a polarized population of right and left, conservative and liberal, may be shocked at how much all or our worldviews overlap. On the surface, a “Skeptic” who listens to Rush Limbaugh may seem a world apart from an “Active,” who reads The Nation. But their overall perceptions of how the world works have far more similarities than differences.


“Ultimately,” says Shelton, “the question isn’t ‘How do we motivate people to change?’ It’s ‘How can we create conditions within which people will motivate themselves?’” To help you to better recognize and understand how this might be accomplished, here’s our synthesis of Shelton’s consumer profiling, plus some research of our own. First, we’ll identify key behavior “types”—then offer tips on how to reach them with green messaging.


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