Jacquie Ottman's
Green marketing Blog

Jacquie Ottman's Green Marketing Blog

The Newest Rule of Green Marketing: Help Consumers Live a ‘No-Waste’ Lifestyle

Swedes at a train station

The Swedes Enjoy the Most Sustainable Lifestyle in the World (Image credit: Melker Dahlstrand/imagebnk.sweden.se)

In 1988, my antenna tweaked toward an emerging trend soon to be called ‘green consumerism’.  A hole in the ozone layer was discovered over Antarctica, nightly newscasts tracked the daily wanderings of the Mobro garbage barge, and air pollution clogged views of the Grand Canyon. Among the culprits: consumer products.

Alternatives needed to be found for CFCs in aerosols, polystyrene clamshells …Read more...

 

Sustainable Innovation 2013: Key Lessons

Enviu.org uses crowdsourcing to create concepts for innovative businesses with positive environmental and social impact.

Every year I head to Europe to take part in the Sustainable Innovation Conference organized by The Centre for Sustainable Design (UK) as part of its ‘Towards Sustainable Product Design’ series of conferences.  Sustainable Innovation brings together pioneers, movers and shakers from around the world and across multiple industries who are changing the game of sustainable design to present their ground-breaking concepts and ideas. This year’s program, as always …Read more...

 

How To Make Waste Watching Fun, Easy — and Mainstream

Mr. Eco

With 9 billion people expected on the planet by 2025, all consumers will need to be reducing, refusing, repairing, reusing, recycling, and lots of other R’s. If your consumers are not on board the waste prevention movement, take some advice from social marketers — make it easy, fun and popular. Here’s how.

Easy Does It
Curbside pickup and reverse vending machines at the supermarket make it easy to recycle newspaper and co-mingles and …Read more...

 

Introducing WeHateToWaste.com

WHW Parade Shortened

I am excited to announce our new consumer-focused blog and website. In beta test since June, it’s called WeHatetoWaste.com and we’re officially launching it this week.

In line with our mission at J. Ottman Consulting, to help businesses meet consumer needs sustainably, our goal with WeHatetoWaste.com is to ignite a movement and galvanize a community of ardent ‘Waste Watchers’. You know them. They are the ones who get those last extra swipes from the Secret antiperspirant, line …Read more...

 

The Rise of the Biobased Economy — and Why Brand Owners Need to Develop a Strategy in 2012

Our economy is slowly but surely heeding the signal that carbon is the new watchword. During the past few years, a steady stream of so-called “biobased” products have been making their way to retail shelves — compostable dinnerware made from corn, plant-based laundry detergents, and bamboo flooring among them. Coke and Pepsi are now competing to be first to market with a soft drink bottle derived entirely from sugarcane or other plant materials.

The emerging biobased economy even has …Read more...

 

Toyota’s Prius: Different Strokes for Different Folks

The mainstreaming of green brings with it the need to segment audiences. As marketing efforts behind the Toyota Prius demonstrate, targeting messages to specific consumer groups can broaden appeal.

When launching the Prius in 2001, Toyota opted to target not the green-leaning drivers one might expect, but rather tech-savvy “early adopter” consumers. Featuring a beauty shot of a shiny new car parked at a stop light and illustrated by the provocative headline, “Ever heard the sound a stoplight makes?” an introductory print ad …Read more...

 

Green Marketing 3.0 Can Re-ignite Interest in Green

Rumors of green’s demise are being greatly exaggerated.  In this year of fiery political passions, the word “revolt” is in the air.  However, I think Ad Age inhaled a whiff of the zeitgeist and incorrectly applied the term to consumers supposedly cooling in their ardor for green products.  “Has Green Stopped Giving? Seeds of Consumers Revolt Sprouting Against Some Environmentally Friendly Product Lines” trumpets the headline of a recent Ad Age article.  The author quotes Timothy Kenyon, director of GfK Roper’s Green Gauge study who more judiciously describes the …Read more...

 

A Better Approach to Tackling Greenwashing Than Pointing Fingers

I have been doing a lot of finger-pointing of late in response to Terrachoice’s latest 2010 Sins of Greenwashing “Home and Family Edition”. Two wrongs don’t make a right. So, let me clarify my position—and in keeping with my normal positive self, offer some concrete suggestions for moving the industry forward.

Rather than analyzing green marketing claims as they appear on the shelf and concluding there’s either something ill-intended about the marketers’ making them (however, clumsily tongue in cheek), or that greenwashing is nearly impossible to avoid, let’s start by …Read more...

 

Terrachoice’s Sins of Greenwashing Report—Time for Industry Self-Regulation?

dried green paint Most of you are familiar with      Terrachoice’s “Seven Sins of   Greenwashing” report.  On a webinar aired in late October, CEO Scott McDougall admitted that his firm never intended to be malicious in their use of the term, “sins”.  He believes that most of the “sins” of greenwashing being committed today are really not sins at all, but rather, inadvertent missteps. 

Call me literal, or not a fan of hyperbole, but I believe that calling, in effect, …Read more...

 

Two Birds, One Switch? Brightening The Future With A Dark Idea

This is a guest blog post by Catie Carter.

"Lights Out New York" Press Release Picture

     For two months this fall, many of the cities largest buildings, including the Chrysler building, and Rockefeller Center, are turning their lights off. New York City Audubon has organized the fifth annual “Lights Out New York” in an effort to help migratory birds. Buildings participating in “Lights out New York” have agreed to turn their lights off from midnight to dawn from September 1st to November 1st.

Read more...

 

Pizza by Cer té: Greener By the Slice

This is a guest blog post by Jean-Claude Darne

New York’s first green pizzeria has opened it doors. Responsible consumers and pizza lovers, you can now enjoy a slice that’s made with the environment at heart. Cer té, a popular café in Midtown East opened ‘Pizza by Cer té’ on Earth Day, April 22nd 2010. To encourage us to help us spread the word they sent us a couple of pies to sample. We took it upon ourselves to put …Read more...

 

Smart-Grid Enabled Appliances will help U.S. Green Marketers Compete in the Global Clean Energy Race

The global clean energy race has begun and the powerhouse economies of Asia-China, Japan and South Korea -are already proving to be key challengers. Although the United States and E.P.A. have made great strides, the Obama administration has yet to take firm action in the form a comprehensive clean energy bill, forcing conscientious businesses and consumers to carry the baton for the U.S.

On the green marketing front, the future of energy consumption in the United States lies in ‘Smart-Grid Enabled Appliances’. Invested players including government, and product and software …Read more...

 

A Tale of Two Green Surveys

One recent consumer survey says it is the best of green times; another, the worst of green times. Has trying to protect the environment gone out the window in the current recession - or not?By Jacquelyn Ottman, with Lisa Martin

The 2009 Cone Consumer Environmental Survey, released in February, maintains that, "Consumer interest in environmental purchasing not eclipsed by poor economy." The report finds that 34% of American consumers indicate they are more likely to buy environmentally responsible products today, and another 44% indicate that their environmental shopping …Read more...

 

Does a Weak Economy Mean Weak Green Sales?

Green marketers of every stripe have been asking me: "Will a weak economy weaken sales of green products?" For people who think green products cost more, the answer is yes. To (reverse) paraphrase John F. Kennedy, a sinking sea should lower all boats. And it's still a little early to tell if sales of many green products and services have been hurt quarter to quarter.

The key thing to focus on, however, is how a softening economy might not dampen your own green products sales. In some cases, it just …Read more...

 

Eco-Logos: A Double-Edged Sword?

Eco-logos are all the rage - but how valuable are they as a green marketing tool? Are there some hidden risks that warrant a second look? Let's consider the three ingredients of an effective marketing logo - green or otherwise - and their implications for the savvy eco-marketer.

Here are the three factors at play:

1. Recognizability. Eco-logos can reinforce green messages, a welcome benefit for sure. But of the myriad eco-logos on the market, only a few are known to consumers. They consist of the, chasing arrows recycling logo, …Read more...

 

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