Saturday, August 29, 2009

Green consumers, who are they?

Who buys green goods? People who rank sustainability above all else? No.

A survey on who buys green uncovers some green surprises. Despite prevalent myths, people who buy more-sustainable products still care about price and value. So sustainability won't sell if it's too costly.

Other interesting myths: that saving the planet is the top goal of green consumers. And here's my favorite: more information won't necessarily spur people to make greener choices.


Anonymous said...

Those results sound very intriguing, so I looked at as much information as the Shelton Group made available without paying $5,000 for their complete study results. It turns out that their press release and the article derived from it are engaging in a bit of hyperbole.

The main thing their study showed is that they didn't characterize a "green consumer" at all. They surveyed people "open to or actively seeking green products and activities. This very broad continuum of consumers ranges from those only participating in one or two activities or occasionally purchasing green products, to that small group who buys green almost exclusively." Within this broad group, which I would hardly call "green consumers" they found that answers to their survey were all over the map.

Ya think?

They probably do have results for truly "green consumers" vs. those just open to being green, but one needs to pay $5,000 to find out.

Summary: be careful what conclusions you draw from a press release that purports to report study findings but really doesn't say much.

Mark Powell said...

Very few customers are what you term "truly green" anonymous. This study seems to look at a much larger number that are open to green consumption, and I think that's more informative than looking only at the committed few who buy exclusively green.

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