Truth in green advertising

Sifting through the confusing world of green marketing.

According to the Cone Green Gap Trend Tracker report released last month, there’s a gap in consumer knowledge when it comes to environmental marketing, with nearly 50 percent of Americans trusting vague “green” claims and imagery as much as actual certification. On the other hand, 71 percent say that if they find a product doesn’t live up to its green promises, they will stop buying it—and 37 percent of those will boycott all of the company’s products. The number of green-conscious shoppers hasn’t changed a whole lot in the last two years, but an encouraging 70 percent of Americans at least “sometimes” consider environmental impact when they shop.

Americans consider the environmental impacts of their purchasing:

2008 2010

Always: 9% 8%

Regularly 21% 23%

Sometimes 36% 39%

Rarely 20% 19%

Never 15% 11%

Source: Cone Green Gap Trend Tracker,