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NEW YORK -- The Procter & Gamble Co. (P&G) met with trade press here yesterday to announce the U.S. expansion of Future Friendly, an environmental responsibility and consumer education platform it first introduced at the 2009 Clinton Global Initiative.
The platform, successfully tested in stores in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, last year, includes such brands as Tide, Pampers, PUR, Duracell, and others. The goal is to help mainstream consumers save water, energy and reduce waste. The program will show consumers how to use P&G products to achieve these savings. For example, nearly 80 percent of the energy used in the typical load of laundry is in heating water at the consumer's home. By washing in cold water with a detergent formulated for that application -- such as Tide Coldwater -- consumers can conserve energy and reduce energy bills. Produces like Tide Coldwater will carry a Future Friendly seal.
Future Friendly products will begin to appeal on retailer shelves next month. The U.S. launch will be supported by a comprehensive marketing and public relations program. A television campaign will begin airing nationally the week of March 29. P&G's April edition of its popular brandSAVER newspaper supplement, delivered to 50 million households, will feature information about and coupons for Future Friendly products. The campaign will be further supplemented by a full suite of digital and social media engagement initiatives, a P&G employee communications campaign, signature event sponsorships and other programs in partnership with recognized experts in conservation education. National Geographic is one of the early partners of the program.
Future Friendly is not aimed at the die-hard environmentalists, or "dark greens," according P&G spokesman Glenn Williams, but these consumers only represent about 17 percent of total households, according to P&G research. Instead, Future Friendly is aimed at the almost 70 percent of households who are described as the "sustainable mainstream." These are consumers who are "somewhat" or "likely" to make a purchasing decision based on a product's sustainability, but still view price and performance as the most important product criteria. Future Friendly offers consumers the opportunity to make small improvements in conserving natural resources without sacrificing the price and performance of the brands they trust, said the spokesman.
Among other findings from P&G's research, conducted by Ipsos Public Affairs, was the continued interest among most consumers to preserve the environment despite the recession. "The recession didn't kill the green movement," said Williams.
Added Maurice Coffey, marketing director of Future Friendly: "We see a growing environmental consciousness among mainstream consumers. Through this newly expanded brand platform we will help remove the confusion and show consumers how simple choices can lead to meaningful results.