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Organic, natural, holistic, sustainable, responsible, however, or whatever you want to call it, the movement is catching on. Whether we are talking about a type of spa, a line of beauty care products, organic produce, a more responsible way of vacationing, a type of construction, or even auto production; many industries are recognizing that it actually pays to go green. Interestingly, this trend in green consumerism is not limited to any one industry or product type. In fact almost all industries contain players who are stepping up their green initiatives. The marketplace is rampant with businesses that have now become involved in the effort to find ways to produce and sell products or provide services that promote conscious and ethical consumption. Most of the green initiatives currently operational in the marketplace typically fall into two categories. On one hand, businesses focus on integrating green features into the design or characteristics of individual products. For example, creating a car that has a higher miles per gallon (MPG) designation or developing a laundry detergent that is eco-friendly. On the other hand, a larger portion of resources commits to a reduction in waste and energy usage, building green and limiting CO2 emissions from production. Ideally, µµgreen behaviour¶¶ should go beyond simply creating a biodegradable or recyclable product to a more holistic incorporation of sustainable values into a corporation¶s core principles and values. Over the last decade, many green companies began building and retrofitting existing structures using sustainable and green materials with concerted efforts to implement recycling and energy conservation initiatives. The trend is so substantial that retailers like Wal-Mart, who traditionally have been criticized for being unfriendly to the environment, have made strides to conserve energy, commit to zero waste policies, and spent significant amounts of money to retrofit lighting and cooling systems in order to create store environments that are environmentally conscious (Addison, 2008). In 2006 CEO Lee Scott pledged to invest over $500 million US to reduce energy consumed in stores by 30 percent, solid waste by 25 percent and double the fuel efficiency of the company¶s vehicle fleet over the next ten years (Financial Times, 2008). Recently, Wal-Mart launched a media campaign touting their sustainable products, and green initiatives (Yohn, 2008). Nike, Interface, Anheuser-Busch, and IKEA are all examples of corporations who are leading the initiative to be more socially responsible in their renovation and construction practices. In essence, these organizations have acknowledged that they have a responsibility to both the environment and
to the communities where their products are produced and distributed. Some of these companies have sought out Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification for the buildings in which they manufacture, distribute and sell their merchandise. This certification is based on a building¶s compliance with standards pertaining to water management, site planning, energy conservation, material use, and indoor environmental air quality. LEED compliance is highly regarded by many organizations who consider themselves forward thinking and socially responsible. According to the US Green Building Council (www.usgbc.com), the benefits of green building are numerous. There are a few ways by which a green product can be distinguished. Green products have to represent a significant achievement in reducing environmental impact; they may also have to incorporate strategies of recycling, recycled content, reduced packaging or using less toxic materials. 2 While there has been much talk about corporations turning towards sustainability and becoming environmentally friendly. Reasons for going green It is really surprising to read these pieces of information as reported in the Times recently: "Air pollution damage to people, crops and wildlife in the US totals tens of billions of dollars each year". "More than 12 other studies in the US, Brazil Europe , Mexico , South Korea and Taiwan have established links between air pollutants and low birth weight premature birth still birth and infant death". As resources are limited and human wants are unlimited, it is important for the marketers to utilize the resources efficiently without waste as well as to achieve the organization's objective. So green marketing is inevitable. There is growing interest among the consumers all over the world regarding protection of environment. Worldwide evidence indicates people are concerned about the environment and are changing their behaviour. As a result of this, green marketing has emerged which speaks for growing market for sustainable and socially responsible products and services Thus the growing awareness among the consumers all over the world regarding protection of the environment in which they live, People do want to bequeath a clean earth to their offspring. Various studies by environmentalists indicate that people are concerned about the environment and are changing their behaviour pattern so as to be less hostile towards it. Now we see that most of the consumers, both individual and industrial, are becoming more concerned about environment-friendly products. Most of them feel that environment-friendly products are safe to use. As a result, green marketing has emerged, which aims at marketing
sustainable and socially-responsible products and services. Now is the era of recyclable, nontoxic and environment-friendly goods. This has become the new mantra for marketers to satisfy the needs of consumers and earn better profits. Green marketing is the process of developing products and services and promoting them to satisfy the customers who prefer products of good quality, performance and convenience at affordable cost, which at the same time do not have a detrimental impact on the environment. It includes a broad range of activities like product modification, changing the production process, modified advertising, change in packaging, etc., aimed at reducing the detrimental impact of products and their consumption and disposal on the environment Companies all over the world are striving to reduce the impact of products and services on the climate and other environmental parameters. Marketers are taking the cue and are going green.
MARKETING MIX OF GREEN MARKETING When companies come up with new innovations like eco friendly products, they can access new markets, enhance their market shares, and increase profits. Just as we have 4Ps product prices, place and promotion in marketing, we have 4ps in green marketing too, but they are a bit different. They are buttressed by four additional Ps, namely protection people, planet and profits. A. PRODUCT: The products have to be developed depending on the needs of the customers who prefer environment friendly products. Products can be made from recycled materials or from used goods. Efficient products not only save water, energy and money, but also reduce harmful effects on the environment. Green chemistry forms the growing focus of product development. The marketer's role in product management includes providing product designers with market-driven trends and customer requests for green product attributes such as energy saving, organic, green chemicals, local sourcing, etc., For example, Nike is the first among the shoe companies to market itself as green. It is marketing its Air Jordan shoes as environment-friendly, as it has significantly reduced the usage of harmful glue adhesives. It has designed this variety of shoes to emphasize that it has reduced wastage and used environment-friendly materials.
B. PRICE Green pricing takes into consideration the people, planet and profit in a way that takes care of the health of employees and communities and ensures efficient productivity. Value can be added to it by changing its appearance, functionality and through customization, etc. Wal Mart unveiled its first recyclable cloth shopping bag. IKEA started charging consumers when they opted for plastic bags and encouraged people to shop using its "Big Blue Bag". C. PLACE Green place is about managing logistics to cut down on transportation emissions, thereby in effect aiming at reducing the carbon footprint. For example, instead of marketing an imported mango juice in India it can be licensed for local production. This avoids shipping of the product from far away, thus reducing shipping cost and more importantly, the consequent carbon emission by the ships and other modes of transport. D. PROMOTION Green promotion involves configuring the tools of promotion, such as advertising, marketing materials, signage, white papers, web sites, videos and presentations by keeping people, planet and profits in mind. British petroleum (BP) displays gas station which its sunflower motif and boasts of putting money into solar power. Indian Tobacco Company has introduced environmental-friendly papers and boards, which are free of elemental chlorine. Toyota is trying to push gas/electric hybrid technology into much of its product line. It is also making the single largest R&D investment in the every-elusive hydrogen car and promoting itself as the first eco-friendly car company. International business machines Corporation (IBM) has revealed a portfolio of green retail store technologies and services to help retailers improve energy efficiency in their IT operations. The centre piece of this portfolio is the IBM SurePOS 700, a point-of-sale system that, according to IBM, reduces power consumption by 36% or more. We even see the names of retail outlets like "Reliance Fresh", Fresh@Namdhari Fresh and Desi, which while selling fresh vegetables and fruits, transmit an innate communication of green marketing. E. PROTECTION Green products having main aim to protect the ecosystem of the planet, saving the earth from the environmentally caused disaster like tsunami, earthquakes, and other disasters. Reducing the pollutants from the environment will ultimately contribute the protection of the earth. F. PEOPLE G. PLANET H. PROFIT
Green marketer can attract customers on the basis of performance, money savings, health and convenience, or just plain environmental friendliness, so as to target a wide range of green consumers. Consumer awareness can be created by spreading the message among consumers about the benefits of environmental-friendly products. Positing of profiles related to green marketing on social networks creates awareness within and across online peer groups. Marketing can also directly target the consumers through advertisements for product such as energy saving compact fluorescent lamps, the battery ±powered Reva car, etc.
BENIFITS OF GREEN MARKETING Companies that develop new and improved products and services with environment inputs in mind give themselves access to new markets, increase their profit sustainability, and enjoy a competitive advantage over the companies which are not concerned for the environment.
GREEN MARKETING INITIATIVES BY MNCs Philips Light's CFL Philips Lighting's first shot at marketing a standalone compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulb was Earth Light, at $15 each versus 75 cents for incandescent bulbs. The product had difficulty climbing out of its deep green niche. The company re-launched the product as "Marathon," underscoring its new "super long life" positioning and promise of saving $26 in energy costs over its five-year lifetime. Finally, with the U.S. EPA's Energy Star label to add credibility as well as new sensitivity to rising utility costs and electricity shortages, sales climbed 12 percent in an otherwise flat market. Electronics sector The consumer electronics sector provides room for using green marketing to attract new customers. One example of this is HP's promise to cut its global energy use 20 percent by the year 2010. To accomplish this reduction below 2005 levels, The Hewlett-Packard Company announced plans to deliver energy-efficient products and services and institute energyefficient operating practices in its facilities worldwide.
Introduction of CNG in Delhi New Delhi, capital of India, was being polluted at a very fast pace until Supreme Court of India forced a change to alternative fuels. In 2002, a directive was issued to completely adopt CNG in all public transport systems to curb pollution ITC ITC has been 'Carbon Positive' three years in a row (sequestering/storing twice the amount of CO2 than the Company emits). 'Water Positive' six years in a row (creating three times more Rainwater Harvesting potential than ITC's net consumption). Close to 100% solid waste recycling. All Environment, Health and Safety Management Systems in ITC conform to the best international standards. ITC's businesses generate livelihoods for over 5 million people. ITC's globally recognised e-Choupal initiative is the world's largest rural digital infrastructure benefiting over 4 million farming families. ITC's Social and Farm Forestry initiative has greened over 80,000 hectares creating an estimated 35 million person days of employment among the disadvantaged. ITC's Watershed Development Initiative brings precious water to nearly 35,000 hectares of dry lands and moisture-stressed areas. ITC's Sustainable Community Development initiatives include women empowerment,
supplementary education, integrated animal husbandry programmes. HCL HCL¶s Environment Management Policy under HCL ecoSafe. In building a system to identify, develop and sustain the maintenance of an environment management system at corporate level we have formulated a program that we proudly refer as HCL's ecoSafe. The aim is to encapsulate knowledge, awareness, and key developments on all environmental issues faced by today's world and to incorporate these in HCL's operations assuring our commitment in delivering quality products, solutions and service. The key objective under HCL ecoSafe is targeted at integrating environmental management procedures into its business processes thereby protecting the environment, health, and safety of all its stakeholders. HCL commits to manufacture products that are environment friendly in all respects and are free from hazardous chemicals. HCL ecoSafe focuses on product lifecycle management to ensure that our products right from when they are manufactured, bought by customers, recovered at their end-of-life and recycled after useful life are done in an environmentally responsible manner.
Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces has launched EARTH (Environment Awareness and Renewal at Taj Hotels), a movement that works to minimise the impact of its businesses on the environment. Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces follows green practices that conform with Green Globe Standards and is a responsive partner in ensuring a brighter tomorrow for future generations. The organisation has launched EARTH (Environment Awareness and Renewal at Taj Hotels), a movement that works to minimise the impact of its businesses on the environment. The initiatives under this umbrella include environmental training for all employees, energy audits every three years, and a phased reduction of freshwater consumption. Waste management: In hotels where land is available, kitchen waste and dry leaves are converted into compost; waste paper from printing is reused as writing pads; pipe steel waste is used as safety railings or in barricades; and old bed sheets are used to make linen bags and cotton napkins. Conserving energy: Taj hotels use CFL lights, which consume 78 per cent less energy; Taj Coromandel, Chennai, generates energy from windmills; solar water heating systems at the Taj West End, Bangalore, have saved over 51,000 litres of fuel over the last three years; a biogas plant at Rambagh Palace, Jaipur, helps in cutting energy cost. Eco sensitivity: Located in a sensitive ecological zone, the Taj Exotica, Maldives, focuses on waste management. The use of plastic bags is restricted and hazardous substances such as lead acid batteries are sent to Thilafushi Island, a landfill area allocated for refuse. The Taj Coral Reef, located on a tropical atoll, takes great care to protect the delicate ecosystem of the coral reefs. Trees are planted near the beach and extraction of sand from the beach is not permitted. Organic wastes are processed and converted to fish food. Non bio -degradable waste products are either incinerated or routed to Thilafushi Island. At Lake Palace, Udaipur, which stands in the middle of the famous Pichola Lake, the Taj takes care to avoid spoiling the lake water and harming its marine life. The hotel uses batteryoperated boats instead of those powered by gasoline, and wastewater is recycled and used for irrigation.
The Taj Garden Retreat at Kumarakom is located near the Vembanad Lake and the Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary that is a favourite haunt of several species of migratory birds. The hotel uses special lighting to reduce the glare so as not to disturb animal life, and wastewater is treated before being discharged. Tata Auto Comp¶s Tata Green Batteries replace traditionally used hazardous chemical elements like antimony with an environmentally-friendly calcium-calcium (C-C) alloyC-C technology replaces traditionally used hazardous chemical elements like antimony with harmless calcium alloy, which is environmentally clean. This technology requires that Tata Green Batteries uses lead that is of 99.99 per cent purity. Lead of such purity, besides imparting very high performance characteristics to the battery, is also recyclable, ensuring judicious consumption of this precious natural resource. Green Technology -Patni Responds to Green Initiatives with IT- BPO Centre in Noida Patni Computer Systems a global IT and BPO service provider, announced the launch of a new IT-BPO knowledge centre in Noida, India. The Patni Knowledge Centre is an environment-friendly facility spread over five acres of land and has a seating capacity of 3,500 or more, said the company. The new facility is designed and constructed as per the guidelines of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) India Green Building Rating System for New Construction, said Patni. ³Patni Knowledge Centre complements the organization¶s green initiatives around efficient utilization and conservation of energy, water and natural resources,´ said the announcement. The facility aims to minimize adverse environmental impact; use less energy, water and natural resources and produce less waste materials. The certification process of the centre is on, said the company. The audit is being conducted jointly by Indian Green Building Council (IGBC) and U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). The important features of the green architecture of Patni Knowledge Centre include: climate responsive architecture, more than 50 percent of green area, drip water irrigation, zero discharge with 100 percent recycling of sewage, solar water heating, and maximum utility of eco friendly recyclable materials. Best Marketing Practice: Take- Back Campaign by Nokia Nokia recently announced a green marketing initiative in India. From January 1, the company is taking back used mobiles and chargers from the customers for recycling. The campaign titled as Take-Back campaign is a unique social responsibility initiative by this market leader Under this campaign, the company is encouraging the mobile users to give their old, unused,
broken mobiles and chargers for recycling. The campaign is initially launched in Bangalore, Delhi, Gurgaon and Ludhiana and will be expanded to national level in coming months. Nokia has installed 1300 recycled bins at the Nokia Priority dealers across these pilot markets. Nokia also promises to plant one tree for every mobile dumped. Another interesting fact is that the company accepts mobiles of any make. This is a best practice because the brand is addressing an issue proactively. E-waste is going to be one of the worst environmental hazards in years to come. Mobiles contribute heavily towards this waste. India being the fastest growing mobile market in the world, this issue is going to be of mammoth size in the future. The Take-Back campaign is aimed at educating people on the necessity of reducing e-waste through recycling. The concept of recycling is not popular in India and Nokia wants to set an example. Some more Examples: McDonald's restaurant's napkins, bags are made of recycled paper. Coca-Cola pumped syrup directly from tank instead of plastic which saved 68 million pound/year. Badarpur Thermal Power station of NTPC in Delhi is devising ways to utilize coal-ash that has been a major source of air and water pollution. Barauni refinery of IOC is taken steps for restricting air and water pollutants.
CHALLANGES AGAINST GREEN MARKETING 1. Green products require renewable and recyclable material, which is costly 2. Requires a technology, which requires huge investment in R & D 3. Water treatment technology, which is too costly 4. Majority of the people are not aware of green products and their uses 5. Majority of the consumers are not willing to pay a premium for green products