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Managing consumer disengagement through green advertising strategies

posted on 16.02.2017, 05:24 authored by Loh, E-Jian
A discord is apparent between consumers’ concerns and their actual green behaviour – a surfacing issue that has obstructed effective green messages by advertisers. Four distinct consumer disengagement issues, including consumer backlash, environmental exhaustion, motivational challenges and social pressures were identified. This thesis explored cultural discourses surrounding green marketing and proposes green advertising strategies that address consumer disengagement. Using the Grounded Theory approach to develop a framework for green advertising, a mixed qualitative method that analyses archival data and case study is employed. The examination of both archival data and case study offer diachronic and synchronic analysis that informs past and present discourses. Archival data was analysed using both content and thematic analysis. Data for the contemporary case study were collected from an advertising campaign, involvement in an intern project and interviews with managers. Three environmental cultural discourses were identified in advertising between 1970 and 2011: conventionalizing green, emotional green and green identity. Each of these discourses was distinctive in terms of its target audiences, green brand positioning, types of advertising strategy and green marketing challenges. Five types of green advertisements were distinguished from the analysis including: informative; multiple benefit; empowerment; redemption and self-image strategies. In addition, several issues surrounding the implementation of green advertising campaigns were distilled. Analysis of the case study confirmed that advertising campaigns are positioned within a complex cultural space as cultural discourses are constantly evolving and negotiated. The framework this study develops recommends that, in order to shift from one cultural discourse to another, specific combinations of advertising strategies should be targeted at specified types of consumer disengagement by drawing on the compatibility between attributes of each advertising strategy and consumer disengagement issue.


Campus location


Principal supervisor

Jan Brace-Govan

Year of Award


Department, School or Centre

Monash University. Faculty of Business and Economics. Department of Marketing


Doctor of Philosophy

Degree Type



Faculty of Business and Economics