Collective Prototyping: A Consumer Policy Strategy to Encourage Ecological Marketing
- Cite this article as:
- Neuner, M. Journal of Consumer Policy (2000) 23: 153. doi:10.1023/A:1006491914466
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In the present paper, three examples of organized positive consumer action that pursues the aim of supporting ecological marketing practices are presented. It is believed that this form of consumer action is more effective in encouraging ecological marketing than the three classical consumer reaction strategies exit, voice, and loyalty. Positive strategies such as entry, confirmation, and approval allow consumers to articulate needs which are different from those that are already satisfied by products available on the market. The examples chosen describe the process of prototypic development of an environmentally friendly refrigerator, a solar system for the production of energy for private use, and the 3-litre-car, demonstrating how petrol consumption can be decreased by 50%. The goals of the prototyping strategy are, firstly, to demonstrate the feasibility of an ecological product innovation, and, secondly, to assess the market opportunities for such an innovation. The examples show that it is possible and necessary to extend the instruments of consumer policy to collective, partnership-based approaches while still adhering to the paradigm of countervailing consumer power.