Silicon Valley is wagering on a "pickup in business spending and jockeying to have their products stand apart in an environment where new customers are hard to find and competition is intensifying," according to the WSJ.
Those companies better earmark some of that cash to touting environmental programs. There is precious little consumer awareness of the technology sector's commitment to going green. That is a key finding of the annual Ipsos Green Technology report released Oct. 26.
The report finds that technology brands and perception of their environmental friendliness has barely budged since 2007. Apple scored a 24 percent rating in 2009 vs. an 18 percent in 2007.
Microsoft and Hewlett-Packard inched up two percentage points to 21 percent, while Dell advanced a point to 20 percent.
Mike Belmont, senior VP at Ipsos, says high-tech companies "put a lot of work into building and instituting environmental policies and processes, but the information still needs to reach consumers in terms they can relate to."
Korean giant LG, which has stepped up is marketing presence in the U.S., showed the biggest jump in environmental awareness among consumers. It rose from six percent to 18 percent in 2009. To Belmont, that “suggests brands can impact their perception through their policies and messaging.”
There is a corporate payoff in touting environmental programs. One-in-three consumers say they are willing to pay more for a green positioned product.
More than two-thirds (67 percent) of survey respondents say the offering of free electronic recycling programs offered by a manufacturer or retailer would influence purchasing decisions. On the flip side, less than four-in-ten (38 percent) are aware of such programs.
That means “companies and retailers of tech products and services have an opportunity to leverage green practices as a competitive advantage,” according to Belmont.
Spending a little green on promotion of green programs is a winner and companies need every edge available to compete in the current tough economic environment.