Broadening the Concept of Green Marketing: Strategic Corporate Social Responsibility

Broadening the Concept of Green Marketing: Strategic Corporate Social Responsibility

Özlem Alikılıç (Yaşar University, Turkey)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-6635-1.ch006
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Abstract

This chapter investigates the concept of strategic corporate social responsibility to broaden the concept of green marketing. The guiding thesis is that social marketing has evolved throughout the decades and has led to strategic corporate social responsibility. There is, however, a lack of consensus on the definition of corporate social responsibility as the fundamental norm of this strategic state. In this chapter, a strategic framework that offers to broaden the concept of green marketing is provided. This chapter also explores the nature of strategic corporate social responsibility with a view towards understanding its components. Then discussion is framed by CSR theories and critical approaches.
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Introduction

Although satisfying the needs of customers in a profitable way is the fundamental principle of marketing (Kotler & Armstrong, 2010), environmental or “green” marketing has been seen as a tool towards sustainable development and satisfaction of society (Karna & Hansen, 2003). Today businesses are being proactive to take greater responsibility for the environment and consider the social impact of their actions. Of course there are still many companies resisting these socially responsible actions. But increasing growth of consumer awareness and worldwide environmentalist movements force businesses to take social responsibility into consideration.

In this chapter, we’ll examine one of the most important concepts of marketing that addresses sustainable green programs, meeting the needs of society, consumers and businesses through socially responsible actions. This chapter is organized into two distinct parts. Part I of the chapter highlights the depth of social marketing and societal marketing concept, cause – related marketing and green marketing, while Part II presents the concept of strategic corporate social responsibility. Part I lays down the foundation that provides details on where this subject originated and how it has evolved over time. In this part, first we’ll start by defining social marketing concept and how it evolves from green activities to strategic corporate responsibility, and then look at some criticisms based on green activities, and corporate responsibility from an ethical perspective. Part II defines CSR and examines the principles and components of corporate social responsibility in more detail and examines the strategic part of CSR (strategic CSR) by outlining how companies integrate CSR programs into their marketing communication efforts. Finally, we’ll see how corporations themselves can benefit from strategic social responsibility actions.

Today environmental quality is a part of overall quality and customer satisfaction. Consumers scan both the products and businesses and their impacts on general environment. They are asking questions they never asked before, like “what kind of material is this product made from? How was it manufactured? What will happen to it after I use it?” Today they are concerned about all the impacts of their products. In the old days, consumers went to the store to buy products that performed their functions properly, were convenient, and had affordable price tags.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Corporate Social Responsibility: The obligation of an organization's management towards the welfare and interests of the society in which it operates.

Transparency: As a principle means that the external impact of the actions of the organization can be ascertained from that organizations’ reporting and pertinent facts are not disguised within that reporting.

Accountability: A corporate control by society. Now it might be stated that accountability is the emphasis on social and ethical accounting. Accountability entails the procedures and processes by which one party justifies and takes responsibility for its activities.

Carroll’s CSR Pyramid: Probably the most well-known model of CSR, with its four levels indicating the relative importance of economic, legal, ethical and philanthropic responsibilities respectively.

Corporate Philanthropy: Used as a form of public relations or advertising, promoting a company’s image or brand through cause-related marketing or other sponsorships.

Sustainability: A business approach that creates long-term value for the corporation by incorporating economic, environmental and social dimensions into its core business decisions.

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