It’s estimated that the green movement represents a market potential of approximately $500 billion. The trend to increase environmental awareness and action—known as green, organic, eco-friendly, biodegradable, sustainable and renewable—grows each day. The proliferation of new technologies and products that support a green lifestyle, aggressive advocacy groups, and corporate-inspired initiatives are prompting even the least likely of green consumers to use eco-friendly products.
With Earth Day approaching quickly, no doubt we’ll begin to see messages about protecting our planet, recycling and going green. These messages will be well-received by consumers who have tendencies to include eco-friendly activities in their everyday lives. But for those consumers who are not green-minded, these messages may go unnoticed. There is an untapped opportunity for marketers looking to speak directly to a large group of consumers who are just beginning the green transformation—the Potential Greens.
The end of this decade is hosting an overall movement toward going green among consumers. Savvy marketers understand that reaching them with offers that match their levels of interest, attitudes and behaviors as they relate to being eco-conscious is the first step in increasing ROI. But beyond that, reaching green-minded consumers through preferred channels, with messages that resonate with them, will go a long way in building loyalty and customers for life.
It wasn't all that long ago when headlines discussed a global movement of consumers and companies becoming more environmentally conscious and green in their everyday activities and operations. More recently, we're reading about the next wave of businesses closing and consumers cutting back as a result of job loss and the desire to save more and spend less.
The key to successfully selling to the business-to-business market segment, which includes some 26 million small businesses in the United States, is to look for ways to segment within that segment rather than to simply address small businesses as a whole.
Big corporations might get the lion’s share of business headlines, but the truth is that business in America mostly means small business. Two-thirds of the nation’s new jobs and 40 percent of the U.S. gross domestic product are created by small businesses. Nearly all companies nationwide—99 percent—have fewer than 500 employees, government and industry figures show. That’s why any company planning a large-scale, sophisticated effort to seek out potential B-to-B customers will go where the action is: small- to mid-size businesses. They add up to a huge market for credit card companies offering professional cards, insurance firms rounding out commercial portfolios, office furniture