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Consumer study shows powerful shift in sustainable consumption

November 2013

One third of consumers now regard the sustainability proposition as the ‘cool thing to do’ rather than just the ‘right thing to do’. So says a new global consumer study by BBMG, GlobeScan and SustainAbility.

According to the report, The 2013 Aspirational Consumer Index, more than one-third of consumers globally (36.4%) identify as Aspirationals, defined by their love of shopping (78%), desire for responsible consumption (92%) and their trust in brands to act in the best interest of society (58%). The study draws from a telephone and in-person survey of 21,492 consumers across 21 international markets.

“Driven by young, optimistic consumers in emerging markets and amplified by technology and social media’s influence, Aspirationals represent a powerful shift in sustainable consumption from obligation to desire,” commented Raphael Bemporad, co-founder and chief strategy officer at brand innovation consultancy BBMG. “With Aspirationals, the sustainability proposition has changed from being the ‘right thing to do’ to being the ‘cool thing to do,’ and brands have a profound opportunity to harness sustainable design and societal values to inspire the next generation of commerce and create positive impact in the world.”

“Aspirationals are materialists who define themselves in part through brands and yet they believe they have a responsibility to purchase products that are good for the environment and society,” said Eric Whan, Sustainability Director at GlobeScan. “By engaging Aspirational consumers, brands can further the shift toward more sustainable consumption and influence behaviour change at scale.”

Bemporad added: “For decades, green marketers have been speaking to the wrong consumers, assuming that by engaging the most committed ‘advocates’ we would create significant business growth, cultural relevance and change at scale. What makes Aspirationals so compelling is that they combine an authentic commitment to sustainability with a love of shopping, design and social status, aligning economic, cultural and social forces to shift the way we shop.”
 




Global | Consumer attitudes

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