Green Brand Survey

Here’s an interesting survey from Landor Associates.  Landor is a consulting company with particular expertise in Branding, especially consumer attitudes about the environment.  The company’s come a long way in a few short years.  Since 2006, it’s expanded its survey from 500 U.S. respondents to 9,000 across eight countries.

June’11’s survey is interesting for these reasons:
  • It’s based on a transversal study comparing several countries, so different consumer attitudes and cultures can be assessed.
  • it demonstrates key differences amongst consumers in developing versus developed countries
  • these differences are not what one might expect (read on!)
What Landor’s survey is not….
  • It is not a survey of company’s rankings on Corporate Social Responsibility (“CSR”) efforts.  However…

Attributes of the 2011 U.S. Rankings:

  • Nearly all of the companies on this list are in fact on several SRI lists
  • Private companies are included
  • Small companies are also listed
  • Four are “born green” establishments (i.e, Seventh Generation)
Source:  Landor Associates, 2011

 Biggest Surprises:
  • Consumers, especially in Australia and in the States, believe that the Energy industry does the best job of protecting the environment.
  • Hmm, strange.  Remember, this is not a survey of corporate CSR.  What I can tell you is that the large Energy multinationals are great at advertising their green efforts.   Could this be propaganda?  maybe…
  • In other countries, including Germany, India and China, the Technology sector was cited as being the biggest protector of the environment.
  • In Developed (aka Rich) countries, the greatest hurdle to purchasing green was price.  Hmm…perhaps this is related to the weak European and U.S. economies…
 Biggest “no kidding” finding:
  • Brands that people can “touch & feel” are the ones that were most represented in Landor’s Top 10 list.
  • This makes sense because such products are seen everyday by consumers shopping for personal care items, groceries, household cleaners, etc.

Does the Economy affect the Green Consumer?

  • Yes, a weak economy, or even perception thereof, does affect consumer behavior.
  • Sadly, the U.S. consumer is hurting and is now considering Value of vital importance purchase decisions.
  • Note that until recently (2012) consumer confidence numbers were outright terrible.  The Financial Crises is long over, however, consumer confidence is coming-off its lowest point since the recession and low-point of the U.S. stock market (March 2009).
    • In fact, an evolution of U.S. data shows that while consumers are willing to spend more on green products, fewer respondents have felt this way versus previous years’ surveys.

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