A few weeks ago Lifegate presented the results of the third national monitor on conscious lifestyle, and we can now say that, two years after Expo, people’s interest in this issue got consolidated and definitely not waned, as perhaps erroneously we could assume. One thousand Italians were interviewed during the survey jointly developed by Lifegate and Eumetra Monterosa Institute of Research, this year hosted by the European Commission and supported by Best Western, Ricola, Unipol Group, Vaillant and Lavazza.

Three aspects were investigated on sustainability: knowledge, attitudes and ultimately behaviours. No wonder that the problem of smog attains the first place in the common feeling: as many as 90% of respondents consider investment in clean and renewable energies in the top list of priorities, and 93% believe that the sun and the wind are useful alternative tools to boost our national economy.

Is sustainability fashion or conviction? Italy is divided

The percentage of Italians who know and deepen this issue is interesting: 27%, which means almost a third, prove to have a high command of sustainability lexicon. Now, it would be premature to think that sustainability is fully entered among the ​​recognized values of the Bel Paese, but we can say that we are on our way as well. 2017 is the international year of sustainable tourism and as many as 3.5 million Italians say they are willing to spend more for a green journey, while two million people already organize their leisure time consciously.

On the direct question is sustainability a fashion or a salient issue? Italians are divided, they respond with the same percentage: 47%. The undecided ones drop from 13 to 6%. As explained by Renato Mannheimer during the presentation, this doesn’t mean that those believing that green is just fashion don’t choose according to their convictions, but rather that they think that often those who speak of sustainability do so because the issue has become trendy.

What have we understood?

«People have got more power, communication is not vertical any longer but it’s turned to a dialogue that leads both to conscious individual actions and to the understanding that the bases of change lay in consumer habits». These are the words of Enea Roveda, CEO of LifeGate group – words that partly explain the phenomenon underway and the change of course that brings about 30 million consumers in Italy to wish for corporate sustainable behaviours both towards people – also meant as internal resources – and towards the planet.

Words that I was reminded last week by reading an article published by Ninja Marketing and catching my attention: “The CMO is dead, long live the CGO: the Coca-Cola case“. The decision to eliminate the role of CMO (Chief Marketing Office) in Coca-Cola was taken due to two factors: speed, understood as urgent simplification of processes, and the new consumer approach, now need-driven.

Among the skills that a Chief Growth Officer must have, Ninja Marketing mentions the ability to listen to consumers. In short, «before developing persuasive advertising it is crucial to put the consumer at the centre and to be oriented to innovation so as to allow the company to its first mover advantage when it identifies the blank spots of market opportunities». This may coincide with championing high potential products or services, totally to develop though they might be.

We are in the consumer-centric era, but no company should ever lose sight of itself. Slave to market, no. Value adder, yes.

Ilenia La Leggia



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