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RESEARCH BRIEF: How going green can better your brand

Takeaway: A company can improve consumer attitudes toward its brand by introducing new green products—and keeping the messages about the product simple.

Suggested Audience: Top leaders, research and development teams, marketing and communications professionals, sustainability and corporate citizenship managers and practitioners

A recent study explored how the introduction of green products affects consumer brand attitude. Researchers analyzed 2,904 product introductions from 75 brands from 2009 to 2012 and found that consumers felt more positively about a brand when it introduced green products.

Key findings:

       The introduction of green products significantly improves consumer attitudes toward the brand.

       The quantity of ‘green claims’ made about a product by the firm affects brand attitude. Consumers are more likely to feel positively about a brand when there are fewer ‘green claims’ made about a product.

       The introduction of a green product is more likely to positively affect brand attitude when the benefits described are fewer (i.e., the product does not otherwise offer long-term advantages, such as health benefits).

       Younger firms, as well as those whose environmental efforts are not highly regarded, benefit the most from the introduction of green products.

If citing, please refer to original article: Olsen, M.C., Slotegraaf, R.J., & Chandukala, S.R. (2014). Green Claims and Message Frames: How Green New Products Change Brand Attitude. Journal of Marketing, 34, 956-964.

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