Mark Dolliver’s Takes: Women Less Green

Women are less likely than men to scoff at ecological concerns. You can gather as much from the chart here, showing data from a poll by Frank About Women. But this doesn’t mean most women give top priority to “green” products: The “reality,” says the study, is that “most women refuse to sacrifice ease and convenience for green benefits.” If they feel they’re getting “a comparable product with green benefits,” 69 percent are game to buy it. Still, just 31 percent said they’d pay more to buy earth-friendly goods; 39 percent would switch brands for that reason. Women are most keen on green wares whose benefits are “personal and health-oriented”: 52 percent would be willing to buy a green product “if it would benefit their health or that of their families,” and 37 percent would be willing to pay more for this.

for your ‘how times change’ file

Who would you guess has higher median household income: Cadillac owners or Volkswagen owners? It’s not even close. A Scarborough Research/Radio Ad-vertising Bureau study puts Cadillac owners’ income at $59,565 and VW owners’ at $77,914.

paying those credit-card bills

Maybe they don’t mind carrying debt, or maybe they just can’t avoid it. Either way, young adults are less likely than their elders to pay off their monthly credit-card bills in full, as you can see in the chart at lower left, which draws on an Experian/Gallup Personal Credit Index survey. Overall, 37 percent of adults always pay their full balance, 13 percent usually do, 24 percent pay as much as they can but always carry a balance, 11 percent usually pay the minimum and 1 percent sometimes pay less than the minimum. Thirteen percent don’t have a credit card(!).

The wedding as road trip

What do they do for a honeymoon—go home? Couples are embracing the destination wedding concept in a big way, pushing revenues in this sector from $3 billion in 2001 to nearly $10 billion in 2006, says a Mintel report. The market is forecast to approach $19 billion by 2011. We’ll see if this is a precursor to the emergence of a lucrative destination-divorce niche.

echo boomers’ frugality

They may not be in a hurry to pay their credit-card bills (see earlier item), but the nation’s “echo boomers” view themselves as a frugal cohort. In a survey of 18-28-year-olds conducted for Visa by the Segmentation Co., a Yankelovich division, 48 percent said they’re “savers.” Even more, 69 percent, characterized themselves as “wait-and-see shoppers,” and 83 percent said they’re “bargain shoppers.” Eighty percent said they “stick to a strict budget” when making purchases, and 81 percent said they’re “trying to cut back on what they spend.” Another part of the poll indicates that baby boomers regard the echo boomers as excessively self-centered. From a marketer’s viewpoint, though, the real trouble seems to be that they’re a bunch of cheapskates.

unafraid of china

Sixty percent of Americans think China will “someday” equal the U.S. in the size of its economy, finds a poll by the Chicago Council on Global Affairs and But this hasn’t thrown them into a xenophobic tizzy. While 33 percent said such a development would be “mostly negative,” they were outnumbered by the sum of those calling it “mostly positive” (9 percent) or “equally positive and negative” (54 percent).