How much are you willing to pay as an environmentally conscious consumer? Neilsen recently conducted a study asking consumers if they would prefer to buy products and services from companies that implement programs that give back to society. In addition participants were also asked if they would be willing to pay more for extra those services… are you?

For the purposed of the study Neilsen labels the socially-conscious consumer someone who ‘is willing to pay extra’. Interestingly, the study that 63% of participants found to be socially-conscious consumers are in fact under the age of 40 and 66% of all surveyed identified environmental sustainability as a cause for companies should support.

I personally find these two finding as encouraging, a confirmation that the younger generation are becoming more aware and concerned with the environment and our personal impact on it. Being from the younger generation myself, I often find myself disheartened at the thoughtless consumer actions of those around me. My personal observations lead me to conclude that this is caused by naivety more than anything else.

Unless you go looking for a environmentally conscious ‘green’ magazine or blog, the documentary on global warming or witness evidence of the global warming media debate, there is often not much given on what it actually means to make sustainable consumer choices.

It’s almost as though the media unless your referencing the rare environmentally conscious magazines like Byron Bay’s Echo, the media avoids the topic entirely. For example we are encouraged to stop using plastic bags, but so many people I have asked aren’t really clear on why this is so important, they didn’t weren’t aware that when placed in landfill plastic bags can take over a hundreds of years to degrade, many had never thought either of what this means for all the plastic bags we have been consuming over the last twenty or so years… they are still there sitting in landfill.

Another interesting finding of this study is that 95% of conscious consumers will trust recommendations from people they know, again it is confirmed that word of mouth is one of the best marketing methods. Perhaps we are the markers of our own future, we need to bring it to the attention of our own media, perhaps it is our responsibility now…