Denise Hopkins

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.

You know the economy is in a sorry state when the entire American auto industry needs a bailout while consumers are being warned about what gift cards to buy for the holidays . . . in case that store, such as Circuit City or Sears, is no longer there when shopping time comes around. Wow. The turmoil that began in the banking, mortgage and credit sectors, before spreading to the stock market and now automotive industry (well, trouble has been brewing there for quite some time), is taking a serious toll on direct marketing across channels.

You know the economy is in a sorry state when the entire American auto industry needs a bailout while consumers are being warned about what gift cards to buy for the holidays ... in case that store, such as Circuit City or Sears, is no longer there when shopping time comes around. Wow. The turmoil that began in the banking, mortgage and credit sectors, before spreading to the stock market and now automotive industry (well, trouble has been brewing there for quite some time), is taking a serious toll on direct marketing across channels.

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