Are green cars considered feminine? Advertisers may be to blame

According to a recent study, companies hawking green wares may need to change their marketing strategies. OgilvyEarth, a consulting group specializing in sustainability, just released the results of their research called "Mainstream Green: Moving sustainability from niche to normal." It turns out that 82 percent of Americans intend to be greener in their lifestyles, but only 16 percent actually follow through, resulting in something that OgilvyEarth calls the "Green Gap."

Interestingly, one of the reasons for the gap is that a large majority of the people surveyed, 82 percent to be exact, feel that actions and products that promote sustainability are very feminine. Hence, you're more likely to see women carrying reusable water bottles, shopping bags, and perhaps even driving environmentally friendlier vehicles. Possibly to blame are the advertisers. There's the Prius 'Harmony' commercial which features children dressed as elements of nature swaying in the breeze as a Prius drives by and the Nissan Leaf commercial where a polar bear hugs a Leaf driver – it may pull at the heartstrings, but not exactly what traditionally appeals to men.

Graceann Bennett, Director of Strategic Planning at Ogilvy & Mather, said:

The study brings increased clarity to how we've been going about marketing green all wrong. We've been trying to spur a mass movement with niche marketing. It's time we all agree that "normal" is neither a dirty word nor a boring strategy. Normal is mainstream; normal is popular; and above all, normal is the key to sustainability.

[Source: OgilvyEarth | Image: AP Photo/Lionel Cironneau]

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