Effective Green Marketing needs engagement not evangelism


American Chronicle
Rajiv  Badlani

Coupled with that, green living is seen as unfashionable, something
for certain types of people only. Celebrities and others in the public
eye rarely promote it and the majority of the public cannot identify a
single person or role model they look up to in the green movement. The
environment has yet to be a major storyline in any of our popular TV
soaps. The message is clear: green lifestyles are still niche and not

The green movement has also busied itself pumping out information,
assuming that information on its own leads to awareness of threats and
problems, concern and finally action. But it rarely does. Unfortunately
most if not all the lifestyle decisions that the green movement seeks
to influence are not determined mainly by rational consideration of the
facts, but by emotions, habits, personal preferences, fashions, social
norms, personal morals and values, peer pressure and other intangibles.
In other words, to influence lifestyle choices we must connect with the
heart, senses and emotions rather than the head and its brain cells.

People actually do care about the environment, that’s clear, and
many of them are worried about it, particularly about climate change.
Psychologists tell us that climate change comes within people’s ‘sphere
of concern’ but not within their perceived ‘sphere of influence’. In
other words, they think they can’t do anything about it. The problems
seem overwhelming and the barriers to doing the right thing high. It
all seems so complicated, so expensive, so time-consuming and so, well,
going backwards rather than forwards. And even if the spirit is
willing, somehow people can’t seem to get it together to change. This
‘attitude-action’ gap is one of our biggest challenges.

Bottom line: Engage people and make it easy for them to start being
greener and allow them to feel involved and able to make a difference.

People need to be taken on a shared journey, not exhorted to do
things. It must be a journey based on dialogue between active partners
about a shared problem.

Their research has come up with some interesting and positive
findings. The informal public research confirms that people do care
about the environment (although they might understand different things
by the term) and that environmentally friendly living is generally seen
as sensible, healthy and something to make you feel good.

American President JF Kennedy’s famous words “Ask not what America
can do for you but what you can do for America”, now need to be turned
around to give: “Ask not what you are doing for the environment but
what the environment is already doing for you.” It’s an approach that’s
essentially selfish but human beings are essentially selfish.

Look for tangible, personal, close-to-home benefits from
environmental actions for individuals. Every environmental action
should carry a personal incentive or reward

Work towards providing ‘green living on a plate’, as easy as booking
a holiday: the equivalent of just making a phone call, handing over a
credit card number and turning up on the day. Introduce ‘green starter
kit’ advice by starting people off with easy actions with obvious
paybacks or pleasant effects that fit into existing routines, before
building up to the more difficult ones.

That’s why we believe that giving away a reusable cloth shopping bag
is such a powerful was to position yourself as a player in this rapidly
growing market for greener products. Not only does the medium in itself
substantiate in tangible terms your environmental sensitivity, but it
also give your consumer a daily opportunity to feel good about

They will be grateful to you for helping them feel good about themselves.

And it is far more affordable than you think. Check out
http://www.badlani.com/bags to find out how elegant and affordable
reusable cloth bags can be.

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