Sunday 23rd October 2016                 Change text size:

Who, exactly, supports environmental charities?


Just who supports these environmental charities then? Are they green activists, or has the message finally got round and everyone is engaging with the future of their planet?

Consumers have volunteered their charity donating habits, and by using data gathered from their web behaviour Exponential Interactive have learned more about these people, their interests, passions and motivations. Knowing the facets that comprise a person’s profile can help charities and brands working in this sphere to communicate and connect with audiences. 

All figures are indexed against the average person in the population and the average charity donor, meaning that all figures are indicative of those interested in the environment, and actively donating to charities that support it. 

Hybrid Cars

Those donating to environmental charities are not adverse to driving, but the car manufacturers they have the highest affiliation to all create hybrid options. However, overall there is no suggestion that hybrid vehicles are more of interest – the purchase of these types is not a given.


Some people think that you can’t really be green if you get on an aeroplane. It may be that this audience donate to ‘balance’ their travel, using a carbon offsetting scheme. They are a huge 147.9% more likely to be interested in foreign travel, with a huge variety of different countries appealing. Guilt is known to be a hugely emotive trigger for charities. However, with environmental concern does often come a desire to explore the places that are more varied and unique compared to home – even Orlando!


These globally travelled people seem to be curious about the world around them – education is a high priority, and they are much more likely to be passionate about reading for pleasure. Their concern for the world around them is reinforced by them knowing about it.  


This audience also seems to love the outdoors, whether it’s hiking and adventure travel, or just being out in their garden or with pets. For example, by reminding people that environmental impact begins at home, whether that’s the impact upon your exercise in your local park, the plants in your garden, or the air your pets breathe, it may make more of an emotional connection.


Nature and the natural seems to infiltrate many areas of their lives, and there are signs of a general concern for wellbeing, with vitamins, exercise and cooking all being high on the agenda. It’s not only about the world around them, but the individual, and brands must make the personal connect with the global.


These are not a collection of tree-hugging hippies out of touch with the world, but are connected and sociable, with an above average interest in technology, gaming and restaurants.

People who donate to charities supporting the environment are not a rare species, but normal people engaging with the world in a way that might help to sustain its future. They can be found everywhere, and the more that brands and chairities know about what resonates with them, the more communications can be tailored to resonate and cut through the marketing chatter. Charities need intelligent advertising – which starts with understanding the consumer.

Francesca Baker is curious about life and enjoys writing about it. A freelance journalist, event organiser, and minor marketing whizz, she has plenty of ideas, and likes to share them. She writes about music, literature, life, travel, art, London, and other general musings, and organises events that contain at least one of the above. You can find out more at

Further reading:

Bedford named the UK’s most generous town by JustGiving

FTSE 100 double charitable donations since recession

10 biggest philanthropic donations of 2013 reach $20bn

British businesses urged to ‘show leadership in charity work and philanthropy’

The Guide to Sustainable Philanthropy 2014

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