Environmental news continues to dominate the media and marketplace—just this week, the Wall Street Journal issued its “Consumer’s Guide to Going Green,” the nation’s largest institutional investors sent a letter to Congress urging passage of a national energy bill, Wal-Mart issued its first environmental report and major retailer Kohl’s announced it will pursue LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification for every store opening in 2008. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
As “green” has gone mainstream, Americans are increasingly looking to make a difference by incorporating environmental practices into their lives. And, according to the 2007 Cone Holiday Environmental Study released yesterday, it seems there is no better time to capture this group of motivated consumers, 48 percent of whom will try to buy fewer gifts or holiday products this season because they are concerned about the effect their consumption may have on the environment. Of those Americans we surveyed:
- Almost six in 10 (59%) are more likely to buy green products this year than in the past
- More than half (54%) are willing to pay more for a holiday gift or product if it is environmentally responsible
- A similar number (55%) proactively seek opportunities to buy green gifts and products around the holidays, with 42% purchasing gift wrap made from recycled paper and 32% decorating with energy efficient holiday lighting
Consumers are looking for easy ways to become environmentally responsible, particularly around the holidays. During the remaining weeks of the season, companies should take the opportunity to clearly communicate to these motivated consumers what green gifts and other products they may purchase to lighten the environmental footprint of their celebrations.