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Climate change: a social and commercial marketing communications challenge

Peattie, Kenneth John ORCID:, Peattie, Susan and Ponting, Cerys Anne 2009. Climate change: a social and commercial marketing communications challenge. Euromed Journal of Business 4 (3) , pp. 270-286. 10.1108/14502190910992693

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Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to explore the relevance and implications of the issue of climate change to marketing communicators in both the private and public sectors, and some of the challenges involve in developing effective climate change communications. Design/methodology/approach – This paper uses a combination of findings from secondary sources combined with some specific key insights drawn from primary research. Findings – Effective communication on climate change which is capable of motivating changes in consumer behaviour (rather than simply raising awareness further) will depend upon: the relevance of climate change to consumers' lives and the relationship to their consumption behaviours being made clear; targeting strategies which take account of differences amongst key consumer segments; and developing a message which motivates rather than overwhelms consumers whilst avoiding any perceptions of “greenwashing”. Practical implications – This paper explores a number of practical aspects of the challenges faced by commercial marketers seeking to engage with consumers about climate change, and it illustrates the potential for the transfer of knowledge and insight with social marketers working in the public sector. Originality/value – The paper is original in its analysis of the multi-faceted challenge of climate change as an important but challenging subject for marketing communications efforts, and in exploring the potential for the transfer of knowledge and insight between marketers in the public and private sectors.

Item Type: Article
Schools: Business (Including Economics)
Geography and Planning (GEOPL)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Global warming; Marketing communications; Social marketing
Publisher: Emerald
ISSN: 1450-2194
Last Modified: 18 Oct 2022 12:38

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