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Scientific state of the art on green marketing
Customers and consumers are a primary stakeholder group as it is essential for a firm’s survival. (For more information about stakeholders see Other Stakeholders). Research studies have been done in order to understand how to attract customers and consumers to green marketing arguments. Rex & Baumann (2006) describe how many previous research studies has focused on demographic qualities of green consumers but that more recent studies has paid more attention to psychographic characteristics instead and that these characteristics has been better in explaining variations in green consumer behavior than demographic criteria. Psychographic parameters include price consciousness, interest in new products and brand loyalty, etc. Also Straughan and Roberts (1999) conclude that psychographics seem the most effective when explaining variations in ecologically conscious consumer behavior (ECCB).
Mandatory and voluntary ecolabels is a common way for companies to communicate with consumers. According to ISO terminology there are three types of environmental communication; type I (ecolabels), type II (self declared environmental claims) and type III (environmental product declarations). When regarding ecolabels, Rex & Baumann (2006) suggest that green marketing needs to integrate more of the conventional marketing in order to achieve greener production and consumption patterns. Schrum et al. (1995) conclude that green consumers is most accessible if treated fairly, i.e. information communicated on a product’s environmental performance is truthful, reliable and objective. Poorly treated green consumers may potentially choose other brands and also affect others to do the same. Therefore green consumers must be treated with respect and care.
Kolk, A. (2000). Economics of Environmental Management. New York: Financial Times.
Rex, E & Baumann, H. (2007). Beyond Ecolabels: What Green Marketing Can Learn From Conventional Marketing. Journal of Cleaner Production, 15(6), 567-576.
Schrum, L. J., McCarty, J.A. & Lowrey, T. M. (1995). Buyer Characteristics of the Green Consumer and Their Implications for Advertising Strategy. Journal of Advertising. 24(2), 71.
Straughan, R.D. & Roberts, J.A. (1999). Environmental Segmentation Alternatives: A Look at Green Consumer Behavior in the New Millennium. Journal of Consumer Marketing, 16(6), 558 – 575.