How To Promote Green Products Among Men Using Evolutionary Psychology?
It was the summer of 2019 and I was at the chill and grill birthday party of a friend of mine. At the event, there was also this guy who wouldn´t stop talking about the importance of pro‐environmental consumption. One thought was going through my mind: this narrative must really resonate with women. I don´t remember if I asked him how well this was working for him, but recent (from 2020) research by Borau and colleagues suggests that under circumstances this should be working well.
Borau and colleagues demonstrate that men who display green consumption are regarded as more environmentally conscious, more feminine, and more altruistic. From an evolutionary psychology perspective, these feminine features could under circumstances constitute an asset for men trying to attract a romantic partner. This is particularly the case when women are choosing a long‐term mate, because feminine qualities, such as altruism and cooperation, are characteristic for men willing to invest resources in their romantic partner and in their offspring. The study confirms that men who display green consumption are perceived by women as more desirable long‐term (but not short-term) partners. Research by Borau and colleagues further indicates that men in committed relationships are indeed eco‐friendlier consumers. This establishes green consumption as an honest signal of men’s long‐term mating value and as a reliable sign of partner commitment.
Marketers can make use of these findings when promoting green products. One way is the development of advertisements emphasizing that men owning green products (or engaging in green consumption behaviors) are viewed as more altruistic and trustworthy, especially in a mating context. Another application is the inclusion of romantic relationship commitment as a segmentation variable. Men in committed relationships engage in more green consumption behaviors.