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Green Marketing - US - April 2011

The number of consumers whose shopping or investing decisions are influenced by corporate behavior continued to grow in 2010. Despite ongoing financial pressures, consumers remain committed to ethical and green shopping.

However, while the pool of green shoppers has grown slightly in the past year, the competition for those consumers has increased enormously. The number of products being marketed using green claims has skyrocketed in the past five years. Consumers are reacting to the proliferation of green marketing with confusion and skepticism, making it harder for brands with real green benefits to get their message out to their target markets.

At the same time, the new, broader base of consumers interested in making ethical purchasing decisions is less willing to sacrifice convenience for green products, pay a premium for them, or research confusing and conflicting claims on their own.

This report aims to help green marketers cut through the clutter to make clear cases for consumers in an increasingly green-oriented world. The report makes use of custom quantitative and qualitative surveys, alongside expert coverage of the direction of consumer sentiment. Trends are clarified using comparisons with data from Mintel’s 2010 report on the same subject. Insight into the green consumer’s mind and broad trends is provided along the following topics:

  • How the recession and government action have altered the playing field for green marketing
  • Which green topics are getting the most attention from companies and from consumers
  • How people of different ages, races, incomes and education think differently about corporate responsibility
  • How new consumer protection rules may drastically alter the playing field for green marketers in 2011
  • Which marketing strategies are most likely to win over or alienate the most committed green shoppers
  • What companies have improved their green reputations and which strategies were most important to their success
  • How effective green marketing can reduce financial and reputational risk for companies

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Table of contents

  1. Scope and Themes

    • What you need to know
      • Definition
        • Data sources
          • Consumer survey data
            • Advertising creative
              • Abbreviations and terms
                • Abbreviations
                  • Terms
                  • Executive Summary

                    • Consumer confusion and increasing expectation drive change in green marketing landscape
                      • Core business principles of efficiency and risk management drive most corporate green initiatives
                        • Green brand landscape constantly evolving
                          • Effective green brands leverage their core strengths
                            • A growing minority of consumers commit to ethical shopping
                              • Unwillingness to pay and lack of knowledge are primary barriers to ethical shopping
                                • Younger and higher income consumers greener in outlook and shopping habits
                                  • Green ads pack biggest punch with key demographics: women and 18-24s
                                    • Asian and Hispanic commitment to green shopping bodes well for future of green marketplace
                                    • Insights and Opportunities

                                      • How consumers learn about green brands shapes their thinking
                                        • Tailored messages should speak to consumers’ ideas about what is green
                                        • Inspire Insights

                                            • Trend: Moral Brands
                                            • Competitive Context

                                              • Key points
                                                • Claims and confusion in green marketplace
                                                  • Figure 1: Annual number of green product claims, 2002-10
                                                  • Figure 2: Examples of green product claims, 2010
                                                • Certification and standards continue to proliferate
                                                  • Consumer guidance and protection improving
                                                    • Green improvements travel up supply chain
                                                      • More companies focus on water use and risks
                                                      • Market Drivers

                                                        • Key points
                                                          • Renewed growth in CSR resources within companies
                                                            • Consumer commitment to green in a slump
                                                              • Figure 3: Environmental attitudes and behavioral trends, 2003-10
                                                            • Government mandates receding in importance
                                                              • So, what drives corporate green action?
                                                                • Putting dollar values on green
                                                                  • Investor activism prods managers toward green decisions
                                                                    • Figure 4: Influence of green initiatives on investing decisions, Dec. 2010
                                                                  • Risk management core to green thinking
                                                                  • Green Marketing Trends

                                                                    • Key points
                                                                      • Consumers identify familiar mainstream brands as greenest
                                                                        • Figure 5: Top green brands, Jan. 2010-Dec. 2010
                                                                      • Which brands are seen as bad?
                                                                        • Figure 6: Brands seen as least green, Jan. 2010
                                                                      • Creative campaigns combine media in new ways
                                                                        • Media companies promote their own green images using green sponsors
                                                                          • NBC Universal campaign a model for combining TV with new media in selling green
                                                                            • Figure 7: Subaru/NBC Universal, television ad, 2010
                                                                          • Internet cross-promotions allow for efficient targeting of green consumers
                                                                            • Green marketing a new standard for auto industry
                                                                              • General Motors (GM)
                                                                                • Figure 8: GM, television ad, 2010
                                                                              • Ford
                                                                                • Figure 9: Ford, television ad, 2010
                                                                              • Toyota
                                                                                • Figure 10: Toyota Prius, television ad, 2011
                                                                                • Figure 11: Toyota, television ad, 2010
                                                                            • Green Marketing Success Stories

                                                                              • Brand analysis: General Electric
                                                                                • Figure 12: Brand analysis of GE ecomagination
                                                                              • GE online
                                                                                • GE television advertising
                                                                                  • Figure 13: GE Biogas, television ad, 2011
                                                                                  • Figure 14: GE WattStation, television ad, 2010
                                                                                • Brand analysis: Johnson & Johnson
                                                                                  • The new green marketing paradigm
                                                                                  • Building a Green Brand

                                                                                    • Brand analysis: Procter & Gamble (P&G)
                                                                                      • Figure 15: Brand analysis of P&G Future Friendly
                                                                                    • P&G television advertising
                                                                                      • Figure 16: P&G Future Friendly, television ad, 2010
                                                                                    • Brand analysis: Marcal
                                                                                      • Figure 17: Brand analysis of Marcal
                                                                                  • Cautionary Tales

                                                                                    • Brand analysis: BP
                                                                                        • Figure 18: Brand analysis of BP, post-spill
                                                                                      • BP online
                                                                                        • BP television advertising
                                                                                          • Figure 19: BP, television ad, 2010
                                                                                        • Brand analysis: Frito-Lay
                                                                                          • Frito-Lay online
                                                                                          • Attitudes Toward Corporate Responsibility

                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                              • Ethical shopping shows slight upward trend
                                                                                                • Figure 20: Influence of corporate behavior on shopping decisions, Dec. 2007-Dec. 2010
                                                                                              • Women more likely to shop ethically
                                                                                                • Figure 21: Attitudes toward corporate responsibility, by gender, Dec. 2010
                                                                                              • Under-35s least concerned about corporate ethics
                                                                                                • Figure 22: Attitudes toward corporate responsibility, by age, Dec. 2010
                                                                                              • Corporate ethics important to higher income consumers
                                                                                                • Figure 23: Attitudes toward corporate responsibility, by household income, Dec. 2010
                                                                                              • Barriers to ethical shopping
                                                                                                • Figure 24: Barriers to ethical shopping, by age, Dec. 2010
                                                                                            • Corporate Behavior Impact on Purchasing

                                                                                              • Key points
                                                                                                • Consumers unwilling to compromise product quality for ethical concerns
                                                                                                  • Figure 25: Impact of good corporate behavior on purchasing, by age, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                  • Figure 26: Impact of bad corporate behavior on purchasing, by age, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                • Higher income consumers more likely to reward corporate responsibility
                                                                                                  • Figure 27: Impact of good corporate behavior on purchasing, by household income, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                  • Figure 28: Impact of bad corporate behavior on purchasing, by household income, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                • Urbanites report deeper commitment to ethical shopping
                                                                                                  • Figure 29: Impact of good corporate behavior on purchasing, by urban/rural, Dec. 2010
                                                                                              • Green Attitudes and Behavior

                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                  • Green issues still important to most Americans
                                                                                                    • Figure 30: Green attitudes and behaviors, by age, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                  • Higher income consumers more likely to see themselves as green
                                                                                                    • Figure 31: Green attitudes and behaviors, by household income, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                • The Green Consumer

                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                      • Green consumer base shows first signs of growth in three years
                                                                                                          • Figure 32: Change in share of “green” consumer population, Aug. 2006-Dec. 2010
                                                                                                        • 18-35s and high income households drive green marketplace
                                                                                                            • Figure 33: “Super Green/True Green” consumer population, by demographics, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                        • Deciding Which Brands are Green

                                                                                                          • Key points
                                                                                                            • Despite broad reach of green marketing, consumers still uncertain about which companies are green
                                                                                                              • Figure 34: Awareness of green marketing, by age, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                            • Higher income consumers feel more knowledgeable about green companies
                                                                                                              • Figure 35: Attitudes toward green marketing, by household income, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                            • Women use social networks and social responsibility to evaluate green companies
                                                                                                              • Figure 36: Influences on perception of a company’s greenness, by gender, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                            • Seniors use news coverage to judge companies’ green records
                                                                                                              • Figure 37: Influences on perception of a company’s greenness, by age, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                            • High income consumers use multiple sources to decide who is green
                                                                                                              • Figure 38: Influences on perception of a company’s greenness, by household income, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                          • Green Practices That Matter Most

                                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                                              • Toxics, recycling, and pollution top list of consumers’ green concerns
                                                                                                                  • Figure 39: Important issues pertaining to corporate environmental behavior, Jan. 2010 – Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                • 18-24s have unique view of green business practices
                                                                                                                  • Figure 40: Important issues pertaining to corporate environmental behavior, by age, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                • High income consumers focus on green products
                                                                                                                  • Figure 41: Important issues pertaining to corporate environmental behavior, by household income, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                • Rural dwellers prioritize sustainable forestry, fisheries, and agriculture
                                                                                                                  • Figure 42: Important issues pertaining to corporate environmental behavior, by urban/rural, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                • Seniors skeptical about benefits of green practices to the bottom line
                                                                                                                  • Figure 43: Company initiatives that would prompt investment, by age, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                              • Attitudes Toward Green Advertising

                                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                                  • Women trust but verify green advertising
                                                                                                                    • Figure 44: Attitudes toward green advertising, by gender, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                  • 18-24s most receptive to green ads
                                                                                                                    • Figure 45: Attitudes toward green advertising, by age, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                • Impact of Race and Hispanic Origin

                                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                                    • Blacks and Hispanics least likely to worry about corporate ethics
                                                                                                                      • Figure 46: Attitudes toward corporate responsibility, by race/Hispanic origin, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                    • Asians feel well-informed about corporate responsibility
                                                                                                                      • Figure 47: Barriers to ethical shopping, by race/Hispanic origin, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                    • Hispanics most committed to supporting green companies
                                                                                                                      • Figure 48: Impact of good corporate behavior on purchasing, by race/Hispanic origin, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                      • Figure 49: Impact of bad corporate behavior on purchasing, by race/Hispanic origin, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                    • Asians and Hispanics lead in concern for the environment
                                                                                                                      • Figure 50: Green attitudes and behaviors, by race/Hispanic origin, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                    • Asians and Hispanics support green beliefs with green shopping habits
                                                                                                                      • Figure 51: Green consumer population, by race/Hispanic origin, December 2010
                                                                                                                    • Asians most familiar with corporate environmental records
                                                                                                                      • Figure 52: Awareness of green marketing, by race/Hispanic origin, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                    • Green advertising and social media most effective with Hispanics
                                                                                                                      • Figure 53: Influences on perception of a company’s greenness, by race/Hispanic origin, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                    • Environmental justice especially important to blacks
                                                                                                                      • Figure 54: Important issues pertaining to corporate environmental behavior, by race/Hispanic origin, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                    • Green advertising is a double-edged sword with Hispanics
                                                                                                                      • Figure 55: Attitudes toward green advertising, by race/Hispanic origin, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                  • Cluster Analysis

                                                                                                                      • Green-blooded
                                                                                                                        • Demographics
                                                                                                                          • Characteristics
                                                                                                                            • Opportunity
                                                                                                                              • In-between Green
                                                                                                                                • Demographics
                                                                                                                                  • Characteristics
                                                                                                                                    • Opportunity
                                                                                                                                      • Cheap Before Green
                                                                                                                                        • Demographics
                                                                                                                                          • Characteristics
                                                                                                                                            • Opportunity
                                                                                                                                              • Cluster characteristics
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 56: Green marketing clusters, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 57: Green product purchase frequency, by green marketing clusters, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 58: Green attitudes and behaviors, by green marketing clusters, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 59: Impact of good corporate behavior on purchasing, by green marketing clusters, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 60: Impact of bad corporate behavior on purchasing, by green marketing clusters, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 61: Influences on perception of a company’s greenness, by green marketing clusters, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                                              • Cluster demographics
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 62: Green marketing clusters, by gender, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 63: Green marketing clusters, by age, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 64: Green marketing clusters, by household income, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                                                • Figure 65: Green marketing clusters, by race/Hispanic origin, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                                              • Cluster methodology
                                                                                                                                              • Custom Consumer Groups

                                                                                                                                                • Key points
                                                                                                                                                  • College grads more likely to steer spending toward ethical companies
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 66: Attitudes toward corporate responsibility, by education, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                                                    • Educated consumers more willing to sacrifice for ethical shopping
                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 67: Impact of good corporate behavior on purchasing, by education, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 68: Impact of bad corporate behavior on purchasing, by education, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                                                      • College grads see themselves as greener
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 69: Green attitudes and behaviors, by education, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                                                        • College grads are committed green shoppers
                                                                                                                                                            • Figure 70: Green consumer population, by education, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                                                          • Highly educated most informed about which companies are green
                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 71: Awareness of green marketing, by education, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                                                            • College grads draw from multiple sources in deciding which companies are green
                                                                                                                                                                • Figure 72: Influences on perception of a company’s greenness, by education, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                                                              • Highly educated focus more on green companies than green products
                                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 73: Important issues pertaining to corporate environmental behavior, by education, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                                                                • Highly educated skeptical but open to persuasion by green ads
                                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 74: Attitudes toward green advertising, by education, Dec. 2010
                                                                                                                                                                • Appendix—Trade Associations

                                                                                                                                                                  Companies Covered

                                                                                                                                                                  • American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA)
                                                                                                                                                                  • ChevronTexaco Corporation
                                                                                                                                                                  • Chrysler LLC
                                                                                                                                                                  • Clorox Company , The
                                                                                                                                                                  • Coca-Cola Company (The) (USA)
                                                                                                                                                                  • Etsy
                                                                                                                                                                  • Exxon Mobil Corporation
                                                                                                                                                                  • Federal Trade Commission
                                                                                                                                                                  • Forest Stewardship Council
                                                                                                                                                                  • Frito-Lay, Inc
                                                                                                                                                                  • General Electric Company
                                                                                                                                                                  • General Motors Corporation
                                                                                                                                                                  • Goldman Sachs Group, Inc., The
                                                                                                                                                                  • Greenpeace International
                                                                                                                                                                  • HJ Heinz Company
                                                                                                                                                                  • Incos Ltd
                                                                                                                                                                  • J.D. Power and Associates
                                                                                                                                                                  • Johnson & Johnson
                                                                                                                                                                  • Kraft Foods Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                  • Marcal Paper Mills Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                  • Marine Stewardship Council
                                                                                                                                                                  • Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                  • Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC)
                                                                                                                                                                  • Nestlé USA
                                                                                                                                                                  • Organic Consumers Association
                                                                                                                                                                  • PepsiCo Inc
                                                                                                                                                                  • Procter & Gamble USA
                                                                                                                                                                  • Rainforest Alliance
                                                                                                                                                                  • S.C. Johnson & Son, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                  • Seventh Generation Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                  • Shell Oil Products US
                                                                                                                                                                  • Starbucks Corporation
                                                                                                                                                                  • Stonyfield Farm
                                                                                                                                                                  • Subaru of America, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                  • Sustainable Building Industry Council (SBIC)
                                                                                                                                                                  • Toyota Motor Corporation USA
                                                                                                                                                                  • Twitter, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                  • U.S. Department of Agriculture
                                                                                                                                                                  • U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC)
                                                                                                                                                                  • U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
                                                                                                                                                                  • Unilever USA
                                                                                                                                                                  • Whole Foods Market Inc
                                                                                                                                                                  • YouTube, Inc.

                                                                                                                                                                  Green Marketing - US - April 2011

                                                                                                                                                                  £3,199.84 (Excl.Tax)