Idea Gathering: Customer Experience & the Decline of Green

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Not just hearing, but translating innovations and insights is a huge part of the value of the Total Customer Experience Leaders. Our unique idea gathering wrap-ups between sessions facilitate alignment of customer strategy inspiration with business relevant actions and have been one of our most highly rated features in the past.

Here on the blog, we’ll be presenting weekly idea gathering wrap ups of some of our favorite customer experience strategy, design and alignment news and views.  This week our focus is on consumers and the environmental movement. 
Despite environmentally conscious products generating 40 billion dollars for businesses in 2011 the hype around these ‘green’ products is fading with consumers, likely due to the higher prices.  According to a consumer survey conducted by Gfk the number of consumers who were willing to spend more on green items such as food, cars, light bulbs, apparel, and packaging has all decreased since 2008. The percentage of consumers willing to spend more for greener versions of these items has decreased between 5 and 13 percent over the last four years.  This correlates with an Ipsos poll which revealed that 59% of American consumers were not at all willing to spend anymore on a product just because it was more environmentally friendly.
According to a Time Magazine survey, it’s not just over pricing that’s deterring consumers from going green but an overall change in belief. The survey reports that the number of Americans who describe themselves as ‘environmentally conscious’  and ‘car[ing] a great deal about the current state, and future, of the environment’ has decreased since 2009 as well. 
Beyond price and attitude however Advertising Age magazine suggests that the rejection of green products could be due to marketing over-hype and aggression. These kind of marketing tactics which involve exaggerating the impact of purchasing (or not purchasing) certain products have led to consumer skepticism and distrust. When consumers Advertising Age goes on to describe some companies such as Axe and its parent company Unilever which have begun environmental campaigns with limited sales motives merely to gain back the invaluable trust of consumers.  
About the Author

Jeffrey Marino is a contributing writer concentrating his focus on Business Administration, Management Information Systems, and Tech Innovations. He blogs at Fordham Nights and can be reached at JMarino@iirusa.com.