How Green Advertisement Works:
When creating environmentally centered marketing campaigns, strategies are similar to new product evaluations. Target markets and consumer priorities are much different among those who are concerned with the environment and those who are not. In order to motivate consumers to care about the environment, businesses use the affective approach and showcase beautiful environments and use breathtaking images to create emotional connections between a product and the environment. Another approach is to educate consumers using statistics to tap into the cognitive sensibilities to convince the public that a product makes a difference. The effectiveness of both strategies depends on the product advertised, history of the brand and appropriateness of the medium.
For the affective marketing, focusing on the emotions of the consumer creates attitudes that are strong and persist over time. Consumers tend to embrace brands that have similar levels of emotional investment for the particular cause. In the case of green products, consumers would choose a company that has a similar level of investment towards the environment. Advertisements such as Ford’s “eco boost technology” with very little description of what that technology is serves as a subtle phrase to increase the emotional response and accusations with the brand and the environment (Hoyer, 2013).
To appeal to cognitive reasoning of the consumer companies use facts and figures relating to emissions, impact on the planet and emphasize features such as biodegradability. The cognitive approach appeals to the sensibilities of the consumer and is effective for high-effort products such as automobiles and appliances. Outside organizations such as the EPA, Energy Star and the World Wildlife Fund’s approval are often touted by companies because consumers associate outside endorsements as credible sources of trust. Comparative messages are used to convince consumers of product sustainability (Hoyer, 2013).
Companies cannot simply promote a green image and expect to be embraced by customers immediately. In order to have success in marketing to environmentally conscious consumers, attention to detail and consistency is needed. A reputation needs to be established of the brand or organization caring about the environment consistently. (Ankit, 2013). Because of the stubbornness of consumers, millions of dollars are spent in campaigns to convince both cognitively and affectively that a company cares about global climate change and making a lasting impact.
One approach to long term success in green marketing is to use multi-facet approaches to advertisements. “There are various dimensions in green advertising: One is education-focused which aims to enhance consumers understanding towards the nature and environment; another is commercial-focused which is designed to increase the sales of products or services” (Ankit, 2013 p. 14). The combined result of two different types of focused...