The past few years have brought a heightened awareness of consumers’ desire for green products—or those produced in a sustainable manner—and the perceptions associated with them. In 2014, a Mintel study shared that 59% of consumers have developed green purchasing habits primarily as a way to cut costs and not for environmental reasons[i]. Ultimately, consumers value accessibility, affordability, and quality when shopping for green products and services. Additionally, they expect transparency and authenticity from the companies promoting these products.
Companies that can successfully market green products will have the competitive edge that is crucial to stand out in the industry. However, green marketing can be tricky if not approached correctly.
Here are four tips to help you gain loyalty and trust from green consumers:
- Avoid Greenwashing
Greenwashing, as defined by Investopedia is “When a company, government, or other group promotes green-based environmental initiatives or images but actually operates in a way that is damaging to the environment or in an opposite manner to the goal of the announced initiatives.” Surprisingly, green consumers are quick to catch on to greenwashers, so just don’t do it! Not only can false or deceptive claims lead to legal risks, but they also can lead to long-term distrust between your brand and consumers.
- Be Transparent
Many consumers believe that it is the company’s responsibility to adopt green practices. Companies that simply form partnerships with other green organizations in place of acquiring and implementing a green corporate strategy of their own can come across as inauthentic. In efforts to avoid skepticism, share with your customers what steps your company is taking toward operating in a more environmentally friendly manner.
- Promote a Product You Are Proud Of
A full 43% of consumers buy more green products now compared to two to three years ago. This is not because they are more concerned about the environment, but because the products are now more affordable, sustainable, and accessible. In order to compete in the green industry, make sure your product can perform just as well as traditional products at a more affordable price. Consumers are not willing to purchase green products if they will decrease in efficacy or is increased in price by more than $2.
- Show Your Credibility
Another way to successfully market green products is to show credibility right on the packaging. Eco-labels registered through a certified organization will resonate well with consumers and likely will increase the trust they have for your product. Not sure if your product meets the requirements? The Federal Trade Commission’s “Green Guides” can help determine credibility.
To learn more about Martino Flynn’s green marketing capabilities, call 585.421.0100.
[i] MINTEL, Marketing to the Green Consumer, March 2014