Report: Environment rates highest for Millennials – Nielsen

A new report from Nielsen indicates that efforts related to protecting the environment have a greater ability to elevate corporate reputation.

Millennials comprise about one-third of “Opinion Elites,” an influential subset of the public who are highly informed, engaged and active when it comes to social and business issues.

Millennials are a growing consumer force that businesses must reckon with. So understanding what influences their perceptions of corporations and ultimately their purchase decisions is essential knowledge for companies today.

Findings from a 2014 Nielsen study among Opinion Elites in 16 countries about corporate reputation, indicate that this group actively learns about companies, often before they make purchases.

Around the world, these groups are increasingly inquisitive and knowledgeable about the companies they choose to buy from. While almost all feel most favourable toward companies with headquarters in their home country, globalisation is redressing the balance.

Younger opinion elites are more inclusive of MNCs and those headquartered beyond their own countries.

Moreover, with most identifying with environmental causes, they are moving away from philanthropic and social contribution causes that led opinion – and corporate strategy – in older groups.

The influence of digital connectivity is also amplifying corporate messages, whether positive or not.

Thirty-seven per cent of global Opinion Leaders proactively try to influence their friends’ and family’s perceptions about a company because of something they learned about how it conducts itself, Nielsen reports.

Significantly, the range of Opinion Leaders who try to influence others, 26 to 54%, is uniform across both developing and developed markets included in Nielsen’s 2014 Global Reputation Study with Opinion Elites.