Manufacturers risk missing out on sustainability opportunities

Published:  22 August, 2011

LONDON: ‘Taking Sustainability to the Consumer’, a report just issued by CIMCIG (The Chartered Institute of Marketing Construction Industry Group) is a wake up call to manufacturers and installers who are shown to be unprepared to meet future demand for sustainable products and services.

Only 35% of manufacturers surveyed see the Green Deal as an important opportunity and only 31% currently have suitable products available. However, some 500 000 homes will need upgrading each year and the Federation of Master Builders estimate the value of this work to be between £3.5 billion and £6.5 billion per year.

While the Green Deal is still in the future, a similar lack of focus is being placed on the Feed-In Tariff. Although 79% of manufacturers currently have relevant products available, only 21% see it as a very important opportunity for them now.

The report outlines a growing raft of legislation and government-backed initiatives to stimulate consumer demand for sustainable products and highlights the importance of marketers developing effective techniques to sell into this market.

“The main challenge for manufacturers in this sector is to understand the motivations of the UK consumer,” summarises the report’s author Chris Ashworth. “As a committee, CIMCIG is dedicated to helping marketers in the construction industry develop best practices and capitalise on opportunities. In the current market conditions it takes initiative and imagination to create sales.”

Taking Sustainability to the Consumer defines consumer attitudes to sustainability and provides case history examples of companies who have worked fast to develop solutions for the new market conditions.

Compiling the report involved interviews with 100 manufacturers and 50 installers as well as a detailed overview of current market drivers. It concludes that the government is committed to the Green Deal, but to achieve take-up the construction industry must adopt a marketing approach to inform and motivate the home owner.

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