The importance of sustainability
Using Fuller’s definition, sustainable marketing contains two main elements; the general tenets of marketing management and the idea of sustainable development. Sustainable marketing definition is a simply a logical expansion of the current thought on marketing management, with the distinguishing factor being “the requirement that the entire process be compatible with ecosystems to reduce eco-costs and serve the long-term well being of society” (1999, p. 4).
Thus, researchers have perceived sustainable marketing as being both a guiding principle through which the effects of increasing consumption can be captured, and as a process of reducing potential consequences. The overall inspirational goal of sustainable marketing must be sustainable development with consideration of far-sighted management of available global resources and environmental capacities. This also includes the rehabilitation of the environment, which had been formerly been subjected to degradation and misuse.
“Development is regarded as sustainable if it meets the needs of the present without trading off the ability of future generations meeting theirs” (WCED 1987, p. 8). Moreover, sustainable development is viewed as a holistic approach to the decision making process in organizations. It illuminates the inter-reliant “relationship between economic, social and environmental considerations” (Bansal 2001, p. 48). Obst and Lemaitre (2001 p. 47) have posited that,
“Sustainable development also stresses the importance of retaining the flexibility to respond to future shocks, even when their probability, and the size and location of their effects, cannot be assessed with certainty”. METHODOLOGY The paper has utilized a questionnaire which was administered randomly on consumers. The results of 41 respondents have been analyzed in order to help in discussing the topics of sustainable marketing and sustainable consumption. The results of the findings are discussed below.
This document utilizes, journals, books, magazines, government publications and other scholarly articles among other secondary data collection methods to analyze the topic of sustainable marketing. Primary data The questionnaire administered to consumers revealed that more consumers know about sustainability in one form or another. Figure-1: Concept of sustainability in general Most consumers understand sustainability as the responsible use of natural resources, while other consumers.
This shows that consumers need to be enlightened on the concept of sustainability in general even before going into specifics-sustainable marketing and sustainable consumption. Figure-2: The importance of sustainability Most of the respondents believe that sustainable consumption is important and should be enhanced. However, further analysis into the subject reveals that, most corporate are not doing as much and the consumers are also not participating in sustainable initiatives such as waste recycling. Figure-3: Relationship between importance of sustainability and firms’ participation.
The findings show that most consumers find it sustainability important. However, firms are perceived as under-participating in sustainability campaigns. In order for firms to enhance sustainable marketing, there is need for the firms to increase their participation in sustainable initiatives. Figure-4: Consumers will continue to pay more for recycling Consumers have a perception that sustainable goods are expensive (Combining the strongly agree and agree category, more than 54 per cent of consumers). This negative perception about sustainable goods cannot be overlooked by sustainable marketers.
Consumers need to be educated on important sustainability programs that are long-term in nature. Figure-4: Advertising channels In our findings, the use of multi-media is more effective in enhancing sustainable marketing and sustainable consumption. Other channels of communication such as local press and radio are useful. It is imperative to note that sustainable marketing and consumption can be enhanced through effective communication. In other words, communication a key factor in sustainable marketing (and marketing in general).