Fuse 2011 wp_greeninitiatives

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Youth Culture and Green Initiatives is part of Fuse’s ongoing Youth Culture Insights Series to educate those who wish to speak more effectively to teens and young adults. The series includes information on media behavior, social
media, design, web strategy, the future concerns of millennials, and other relevant topics for marketers trying to reach this demographic. For more white papers in this series, go to http://www.facebook.com/FuseLLC.

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Fuse 2011 wp_greeninitiatives

  1. 1. YOUTH CULTURE INSIGHTS SERIESNOTE Fuse has developed an ongoing Youth Culture Insights Series to Myth educate those who wish to speak Many companies rightly believe that green initiatives will appeal to teens and young adults and will more effectively to teens and young result in increased product sales. With 49% of Millennials more likely to support green businesses adults. The series includes (TD Bank Study, 2011) and 19% willing to pay “significantly more” for green brands, (Captstrat information on media behavior, social Public Policy Polling, 2011) the attraction to appear green in order to get green is a strong one for media, design, web strategy, the many brands. future concerns of millennials, and Millennials have been brought up in a society that places more emphasis on the environment than other relevant topics for marketers previous generations and they also demand more from the brands they choose to share their dollars trying to reach this demographic. with. It is easy for brands to underestimate youth culture’s expectations of what it means to address green causes. An inadequate or worse, deceptive, campaign will elicit skepticism and distrust from Millennials. “Greenwashing”* is the term - used widely but particularly within youth culture - for whenABOUT Founded in 1995, Fuse is a leading youth culture marketing agency that green marketing is used to promote a misleading perception that an organization’s policies or products are environmentally friendly. And Millennials have finely tuned radar where it is concerned.FUSE connects brands with teens and young adults. Fuse provides brand Truth strategy, event marketing, PR, design, social media, and digital Young people believe they have responsibilities to others in the world and sustainability is important to services to brands and companies them. Millennials are ready to loudly reward or punish organizations when it comes to an organization’s that include Mountain Dew, commitments to the environment and social responsibility. Slapping an image of an idyllic mountain Gatorade, Harley-Davidson, P&G, vista on label isn’t going to cut it; nor is making vague or irrelevant claims as to the green nature of a Gillette, Nike, and others. product or business.** To be truly effective, green initiatives should foster a relationship between the cause and the population it is engaging. It is crucial to be able to measure the results and the impact in a way that is tangible. Teens and young adults want to know what a brand’s green initiative achieved; lack of clear metrics only casts a shadow of doubt and contributes to their cynicism. FIND US ONLINE fusemarketing.com Implications for Brands Despite having good reasons to be skeptical, youth culture wants to have faith that today’s companies LIKE US ON FACEBOOK are doing the right thing for the planet. 77% of Millennials say they believe it is essential to connect to facebook.com/FuseLLC causes that are important to them (Meet the Millennials, PGAV Destinations, 2011) and when this connection can be found in a brand that also meets their needs in another way – from the jeans they FOLLOW US ON TWITTER choose to wear to the products used to clean their home to the credit card they sign-up for – then the twitter.com/fuse_marketing purchase decision suddenly becomes a lot clearer. For the brands that are truly committed to tapping into the Millennial demographic via a green EMAIL US AT info@fusemarketing.com strategy, it is essential that any program or initiative have measurable results, appeal to teens and young adults, and be communicated to them effectively in a voice and medium (such a social media) that they are comfortable with. MAIN OFFICE VT P.O. Box 4509 Burlington, VT / 05406 SATELLITE OFFICE * A classic greenwashing example is the placards placed in hotel rooms asking guests to help save the environment by re-using their NY 12 Desbrosses Street towels / sheets; in some instances, the hotel may be attempting to simply cut costs and has little to no interest in any other environmentally New York, NY / 10013 conscious initiatives. ** For more on the Seven Sins of Greenwashing, check this article by Reputation Forward: http://bit.ly/nL8VoK

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