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Targeting the “Green” Consumer

Yesterday, I blogged about the reasons marketers are choosing “green” as a marketing strategy. But for companies that pursue this strategy, it becomes clear pretty quickly that just marketing a green product isn’t enough. The company has to be sincere in its own commitment to environmental sustainability and show genuine sensitivity to the needs and concerns of its customer base. This has to be more than lip service. It’s got to be the real deal. 

So who are these green consumers (or LOHAS or lifestyles of health and sustainability consumers) and what are some of their demographics and psychographics that will help marketers to relate to them effectively? Collette Chandler of Keyboard Culture (Green Marketing), describes them this way:

  • Leading-edge thinkers
  • Higher-than-average education
  • Average incomes (this may be a surprise to many who thought their incomes would be higher, but it’s no surprise to people with PhDs!)
  • Among the least price sensitive consumers
  • Expect good value (they expect green products to perform equal to or even better than equivalent non-green products)
  • Extremely brand loyal
  • Tend to write blogs
  • Influence others, particularly their family and friends
  • Early adopters
  • Influenced by brand image

What drives LOHAS consumers to make the purchases they do? 

  • They are driven by the need to show kindness to our planet
  • They want purchase from companies that are authentic and “real”
  • They want to purchase from companies that appear to understand who they are and what they care about
  • They want to know that the marketer is not just in it to make a quick buck. They want to know that the companies they are purchasing from are — themselves — responsible and good stewards of the environment
  • They value the interconnectedness of global economies, cultural, environmental, and political systems, as well as mind, body, and spirit; they looking to achieve “the full human potential”
  • They want to get involved in a cause and make a difference

As a marketer, ask yourself how these psychographics and demographics would make a difference in your marketing. How would you market to these people differently than you would another demographic group? If you decide to target this market, are there changes you’d have to make in your own company or brand image in order to be taken seriously by them?

They are interesting questions, and certainly, many of these LOHAS characteristics pretty quickly sift out the green product wheat from the chaff.  

To view Colette Chander’s five-minute video on this topic, click here.

Like this post? Check out all my “Greening Print Marketing” posts. 

 

 

Written by Heidi Tolliver-Walker

Heidi Tolliver-Walker has been a commercial and digital printing industry analyst, feature writer, columnist, editor, and author for nearly 20 years. She is known for her meticulous research and no-nonsense perspective. In addition to having written thousands of industry articles for top industry publications, she and Richard Romano have been the face of the well-respected industry research firm The Industry Measure (TrendWatch Graphic Arts) for many years. In her more than 13-year tenure with the firm, she has written countless reports on digital printing, 1:1 (personalized) printing, Web-to-print, personalized URLs, and other hot industry applications. She is also a long-time contributing editor and columnist for Printing News, for which she writes two monthly columns, including "Personal Effects," which features monthly analysis of 1:1 (personalized) printing case studies. She is also the author of three titles for the National Association of Printing Leadership: Designer's Printing Companion, Ink & Color: A Printer's Guide, and Diversifying Via Value-Added Services. As a small, niche publisher (Strong Tower Publishing), she is active in utilizing these technologies in her own business, as well.

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