Academy of Marketing Studies Journal (Print ISSN: 1095-6298; Online ISSN: 1528-2678)

Review Article: 2023 Vol: 27 Issue: 2

Impact of Green Marketing on Market Performance in Rural India

Mustafizul Haque, G H Raisoni University

Md Wasim Akhtar, Council for Social Development, Hyderabad

Renu Bala, ICFAI Law School, Hyderabad

Md Sikandar Azam, ICFAI Business School (IBS), Hyderabad

Citation Information: Haque, M. Akhtar, MD., Bala, R., & Azam, M. S. (2023). Impact of Green Marketing on Market performance in rural India. Academy of Marketing Studies Journal, 27(2), 1-11.


Most of the Indian population lives in rural areas, making it an important sector for marketers. Moreover, green marketing is emerging as one of the most influential marketing techniques owing to environmental degradation and pollution and the importance of sustainable development. Thus, the present research focuses on assessing the impact of green marketing on marketing performance in the rural sector in India. Based on the literature review and pilot study, a questionnaire was developed and accordingly, the hypothesis has been framed and tested. Further, bivariate correlation and multivariate regression have been conducted to address the research objectives. The research found a significant impact of green marketing on marketing performance in rural India. Therefore, the present research findings will facilitate rural marketers in assessing the use of green marketing to enhance market performance in rural India.


Green Marketing, Market Performance, Operational Performance, Rural India


Concept of Green Marketing

Environmental marketing, also called "Green marketing" first gained attention in the 1980s and 1990s. It all started in Europe, where it became common knowledge that some items negatively impacting for the environment. This resulted in the developing of environmentally friendly ”Green" alternatives (Lazar, 2017). The practice of selling goods and services based on the environmental advantages they provide is referred to as "green marketing". One possible approach for a product or service to be environmentally friendly is to be created in an ecologically friendly manner and/or packaged in an environmentally friendly manner. It encompasses various actions, including altering the product itself, making adjustments to the manufacturing process, developing environmentally friendly packaging, and adjusting marketing strategies Gbadamosi (2019). In addition, it encompasses various eco-friendly endeavours, such as creating environmentally friendly goods, designing environmentally responsible packaging, implementing environmentally responsible practices throughout the manufacturing or distribution cycle, etc. The fundamental assumption behind green marketing has been that prospective customers would evaluate the "greenness" of a service or product as an advantage and base their purchasing decision on that evaluation Ranjan (2020). However, the assumption that is not so evident in green marketing has been that customers would be more ready to pay more for environmentally friendly items than they would be for an alternative product that is equivalent but less environmentally friendly.

Importance of Green Marketing in the Present Scenario

Since there has been a worldwide surge in environmental consciousness across nations, corporations have realised the need to include green marketing in their overall strategy. As concerns about the environment have come to the forefront in recent years, "green" items have garnered a more significant share of the public's attention; consequently, more and more of these products are becoming available. Green marketing encourages the manufacture of pure products through the use of natural technology, the conservation of energy, the preservation of the environment, the use of a minimum amount of natural resources, and the increased consumption of naturally occurring items rather than products that have been processed Ribeiro & Vinhas da Silva (2017). Furthermore, as an increasing number of people become environmentally sensitive, this helps boost credibility, join a new target group, and stand out among rivals. It is possible to refer to the actions taken by individuals, social organisations, businesses, and governments as "green marketing initiatives" in this context.

Green marketing helps to increase sales, lower operating and manufacturing costs, lessen the danger of long-term resource depletion, and foster corporate social responsibility, among other benefits Líšková et al. (2016). The term "green marketing" refers to speaking out against the creation, use, and or disposal of items that, regardless of how they are used, are harmful to consumers, society, and the environment. Consumers and entrepreneurs need to abstain from using potentially hazardous items. The practice of green marketing has a beneficial impact on the health of individuals and the natural environment. People are cognizant of pure items and techniques for naturally creating, using, and disposing of such things Vijai & Anitha (2020). It supports integrated efforts for naturalness in production and consumption, which is a significant benefit.

What is Market Performance

The term "market performance" refers to the final outcomes of various policies, such as the ratio of the sale value to the costs of production, the volume of output, the productivity of production, the innovativeness of both processes and goods, and so on. Market performance is another essential indication that reflects the business's success, much similar to the company's financial performance. The growth of the company's market share is one indicator of successful market performance Tahmasebifard (2018). Finding out how efficient a specific service or product is in its purpose is crucial to running a corporation or business. Not only does it provide significant information about uses of the company's product lines and offerings, one’s reach, the age bracket or demographics of their customers, etc., but it also reveals whether the company's sales and marketing plans for those products and services are successful or whether they can be improved for greater awareness and reach (Hussain et al., 2020; Azam et al., 2019). Therefore, assessing the productivity of the market has become extremely important because it not only discusses the overall effectiveness and expansion of the market but it also aids in comprehending the future predictions of the same, which can be utilised by businesses and organisations to strategise and position their services and products for the changing circumstances and trends.

Consequently, market performance and estimation should be one of the primary responsibilities of established and newly established businesses. This is because it can assist businesses in accomplishing their goals and objectives in a much simpler and more carefully planned IGI Global (2019). This not only has the potential to reduce the amount of money spent, but it also allows businesses to keep up with the volatility that the market and shifting contexts may hurl at them.

Literature Review

Green Marketing in Rural Areas

The ever-increasing economic growth, the rapid increase in population, and the expansion of industries in India's rural areas are putting a strain on the ecological infrastructure as well as the ecological capital of the country. According to Kumar (2013), literate and urban consumers in India are increasingly aware of the benefits of green goods, but rural consumers are not as informed as their urban counterparts. Compared to the urban population, the number of individuals living in rural regions is still relatively large. As a result of widespread access to cell phones and the internet, consumers today are more willing to spend money than they were a couple of decades ago. Customers in cities are spoiled for choice and picky about what they purchase, but securing repeat business from a loyal client base is much simpler in rural sections of the nation. The usage of biogas in rural areas, along with other environmentally friendly practices and items (such as bamboo furniture, compact fluorescent lights, etc,.), illustrates how Green Marketing has been put into practice throughout India. Another inspiring example is the widespread usage of earthenware pottery and the continued use of the Surahi and Matka to store and consume chilled water instead of a refrigerator Barbier (2020). Malinoshevska & Korzh (2020) explain that such a marketing procedure is a direct consequence of having run in the thoughts of rural consumers. As a direct consequence, markets have stepped up their pace of positioning and targeting rural customers concerned about the natural world. As a result of their anxiety, these same customers are making strides toward incorporating environmental concerns into their purchase behaviour Vijai & Anitha (2020). They are doing so by combining themselves into the purchasing procedure and ensuring that they are satisfied with the marketing strategy for any product that may be needed for rural consumers.

India's rural market is the one that is expanding at the quickest rate in the globe. Rural marketers have both possibilities and obstacles presented by green marketing, but the low penetration rate means they have more chances to seize such potential. In order to measure sales in various markets, marketers need to have environmentally friendly marketing, as Chen et al. (2021) suggested in the context of a different nation. The consumption of products by low-income groups is a clear indicator that marketers in India need to reach the bottom of the hierarchy with cost-effective, environmentally friendly products. India has enormous expansion possibilities, first via increased market penetration and later through increased product consumption. Therefore, it is necessary to design different positioning for services and service variants according to India's social groupings and geographical locations Romaniuk (2020). Various businesses provide green marketing to rural customers, such as IBM, Wipro, Nokia and Samsung. Now, businesses have been using several methods as part of their green marketing efforts directed at rural customers Barbier (2020). Businesses are taking many approaches to green marketing to entice customers in rural areas to make purchases without causing them to waste any time.

Market Performance Parameters

Performance evaluation is essential for effective and comprehensive business expansion and innovation. It includes many metrics that can be utilised to improve the business and the reach of the services and products and make adjustments that are viable to the management. Arora & Bodhanwala (2018) suggest that since market performance measurement contains many metrics, it is one of the most important tools for effective and comprehensive business expansion and development. Metrics for marketing assist and evaluate the marketing team's effectiveness and indicate the business areas that may benefit from more careful planning and more effective execution Khaladkar et al. (2018). The measure for social media is included here because it has rapidly become an essential marketing component, particularly for businesses that use more than one marketing method. The next step is to use sales metrics, which measure the total productivity of the sales force. This step also incorporates SaaS analytics, which is quite helpful for businesses that offer software as both a product and a service Williamson (2019).

Further, as per experts Bhattarai et al. (2018), the profitability of businesses is an essential component of their market performance. In an efficient and competitive market, one would hope that long-term earnings would give businesses a 'fair' rate of return equivalent to the risk-adjusted capital costs. However, it will induce market withdrawal or retrenchment, which might have harmful consequences on customers if the earnings of the businesses are far too low and firms are still unable to fix the deficit. On the contrary, if businesses can maintain high profitability over a prolonged period, this would question the degree to which the marketplace is competitive. The organisation uses a variety of various tactics, and performance evaluation helps contribute to a better understanding of the planning and execution of these strategies. It ensures a straightforward and seamless financial process, which is consistently the right element for stakeholders. The performance measurement involves using financial metrics, which give a total breakdown of a company's profit or how efficiently that money is being handled Anselmsson & Bondesson (2015). In addition, there is a metric referred to as an overall business metric. This helps to gain an understanding of other areas of a business that are associated with it, like a project rundown, level of service, etc. Because these services are monitored in real-time, this operational measurement tool identifies areas that could benefit from additional development while providing an overall picture of an organisation or company's wellness and expansion statistics Kumar (2013). Performance measurement, in its shortened form, provides the company or business with the ability to see estimates of the future with the assistance of real-time data, which gives consistent and customisable solutions. This enables the companies to adopt or modify their methods or strategies accordingly, ensuring that the ever-evolving trends and the market competition are often kept in check and that a governed environment is created for the company to grow.

Gap Identified

It can be inferred from the above discussion that much research has been done in the rural sector's green marketing field. Further, many researchers have identified and analysed market performance parameters in different sectors. However, there is a lack of substantial work assessing the impact of green marketing on marketing performance in the rural sector in the Indian context. Many of the Indian population still live in rural areas, making it an essential sector for marketers. Further, green marketing is emerging as one of the most effective marketing techniques owing to environmental degradation and pollution and the importance of sustainable development. Thus, the present research will mend this existing gap in the literature while focusing on the crucial sectors of green marketing and the rural sector in India. Based on the discussion, the research question being addressed in the present research is-What is the impact of green marketing on marketing performance in the rural sector in India?

Research Methodology

The population of employees working in marketing departments of various companies of organic manure and fertilisers have been considered. The data was collected using simple random sampling. The HR department of these organisations was approached and provided the email ids of the target employees. The pre-defined, close-ended questionnaire was mailed using Google forms. A standard scale of Fraj et al. (2011) was used in the questionnaire. A total sample of 91 respondents was used. Hypothesis testing has been conducted in the research. The hypothesis to be tested is as follows-

H1: There is no significant impact of green marketing on marketing performance in the rural sector in India

Herein, bivariate correlation and multivariate regression have been applied. First, the Pearson correlation has been conducted to assess the relationship between Market performance (dependent variable) and Green marketing (independent variable). Second, multivariate regression has been conducted to assess the impact of green marketing on Market performance (operational performance, marketing performance and economic performance).

Data Analysis and Discussion

The mean values of almost all the variables are less than 3, which depicts the agreement of the respondents towards the statements (as in the present research 1=Strongly agree, 2=Agree, 3-Neutral, 4=Disagree, 5=Strongly disagree). However, a slight disagreement can be witnessed in statement GM5 (mean=3.60). It can be seen that the values of standard deviation are tiny, showing that responses are close to the mean value indicating that the variation between them is slight (refer to Table 1).

Table 1 Variables Explained for Green Marketing Strategy
Model Statements Mean SD
GM1 Use environmental considerations in product design 2.86 1.039
GM2 Use ecological and clean materials in packaging 2.24 1.129
GM3 Develop market research to detect green needs in the markets 2.15 1.032
GM4 Launch of green-positioned brands onto the market 2.22 1.009
GM5 Use of recycled or reusable containers in logistics 3.60 1.074
GM6 Use of recycled or reusable materials in our products 2.14 .926
GM7 Use environmental considerations in distribution and reverse logistics systems 3.46 1.109
GM8 Selection of cleaner transportation systems 2.99 1.111
GM9 Provision of information about environmental management to consumers and institutions 2.09 .839
GM10 Green alliances or collaboration agreements with governmental agencies 2.21 1.038
GM11 Employ green arguments in advertising and promotions 2.21 .983
GM12 Use eco-labels or environmental certification 3.76 1.089
GM13 Sponsorship or patronage of environmental groups or events 3.22 1.200
GM14 Consider environmental aspects within price policy 2.12 1.052

It can be inferred that the mean values of almost all the variables are less than 3, which depicts the agreement of the respondents towards the statements. A slight disagreement can be witnessed in statements Lazăr (2017) Final production costs (mean=3.59), Costs efficiency (mean=3.80) and Corporate reputation (mean=3.59). Finally, respondents were found to be neutral towards the alignment between company’s offer and market expectations (mean=3.20) and Market share (mean=3.01). Moreover, it can be seen that the values of standard deviation are tiny, showing that responses are close to the mean value indicating slight variation between them (refer to Table 2).

Table 2 Variables Explained for Market Performance
Market Performance Variables Mean SD
Operational performance Final production costs 3.59 1.164
Product quality 2.26 1.009
Innovation capacity in new product development 2.23 1.165
Pace of new product launching and range of products in the catalogue 3.59 1.202
Costs efficiency 3.80 1.098
Marketing performance Corporate reputation 3.59 1.064
  Alignment between company’s offer and market expectations 3.20 1.128
Successful launching of new products onto the markets 2.21 .937
Corporate and brand image 2.14 .926
Customer loyalty 2.26 1.094
Customer satisfaction 2.25 1.039
Economic performance Firm’s profitability 2.57 1.668
  Sales growth 2.29 1.098
  Firm’s economic results 2.30 1.038
  Profit before tax 2.29 1.025
  Market share 3.01 1.329

The Pearson correlation analysis indicates a significant relationship between the variables. Mainly, out of all the factors of green marketing, GM1, GM5, GM7, GM8, GM13, and GM14 are statistically insignificant (p>0.05) for two or more factors of Marketing Performance. Thus, these factors have not been considered in the regression model in the next section. It can also be noticed that the remaining significant factors possess weak to moderate relation with the three marketing performance factors (operational, marketing and economic performance) (refer to Table 3).

Table 3 Correlation Analysis between the Variables
Green Marketing Strategy Operational Performance Marketing Performance Economic Performance
GM1 0.048 0.030 0.120
GM2 0.204 0.822** 0.544**
GM3 0.234* 0.729** 0.539**
GM4 0.232* 0.693** 0.511**
GM5 -0.029 0.171 -0.094
GM6 0.232* 0.762** 0.477**
GM7 0.014 0.114 -0.027
GM8 0.061 0.044 0.023
GM9 0.258* 0.588** 0.389**
GM10 0.247* 0.712** 0.512**
GM11 0.215* 0.687** 0.471**
GM12 0.403** 0.223* 0.413**
GM13 0.385** 0.110 0.194
GM14 0.498** 0.037 0.195

Further, GM14 (r=0.498) holds the strongest correlation at p<0.01 significant level with the operational performance out of all the remaining significant factors. It may be due to GM14 discussing the “Consider environmental aspects within price policy”. Thus, it can be stated that the operational performance of the market increases as environmental issues are considered while focusing on financial aspects. Since finance plays an essential role in the market, if environmental issues are resolved without compromising the financial constraints or profits, the operational cost of the market will not be compromised. Further, in resolving the environmental issues, the organisation's market position in the eyes of its customers will strengthen, which will then contribute to increased profits. In a research conducted by Yue et al. (2020), it was found that with the increase in environmental concern, customers with low price sensitivity are more likely to purchase green products than those with high price sensitivity. This research partially supports the findings of the present research. Furthermore, GM6 (r=0.762, p<0.01) can be observed to hold the strongest correlation with marketing performance. GM6 is based on the statement “Use of recycled or reusable materials in our products”. When the customers know that they are contributing towards the environment by using a recycled or reusable material product, they get satisfied that they, as an individual, are contributing to the environment. Owing to this, the popularity of the product is bound to increase. This then contributes to increased marketing performance. Such marketing is also referred to as green marketing.

In addition, the Pearson correlation table also reveals that GM2 (r=0.544, p<0.01) has the strongest correlation with economic performance. GM2 is based on the statement, “Use ecological and clean materials in packaging”. Using ecological and clean materials in packaging reduces the cost of packaging in the long run. Further, eco-friendly initiatives attract customers, contributing to increased revenue. In a research conducted by Listyaningsih et al. (2021), it was found that eco-friendly packaging of agricultural products increases sales and profits. Thus, the finding of this research is in sync with the findings of the present research (refer to Table 4).

Table 4 Multivariate Tests of Green Marketing Strategy
Effect Value F b Sig.
GM2 Pillai's Trace 0.589 38.646 0.000
Wilks' Lambda 0.411 38.646 0.000
Hotelling's Trace 1.431 38.646 0.000
Roy's Largest Root 1.431 38.646 0.000
GM3 Pillai's Trace 0.062 1.775 0.159
Wilks' Lambda 0.938 1.775 0.159
Hotelling's Trace 0.066 1.775 0.159
Roy's Largest Root 0.066 1.775 0.159
GM4 Pillai's Trace 0.018 0.507 0.678
Wilks' Lambda 0.982 0.507 0.678
Hotelling's Trace 0.019 0.507 0.678
Roy's Largest Root 0.019 0.507 0.678
GM6 Pillai's Trace 0.121 3.703 0.015
Wilks' Lambda 0.879 3.703 0.015
Hotelling's Trace 0.137 3.703 0.015
Roy's Largest Root 0.137 3.703 0.015
GM9 Pillai's Trace 0.066 1.920 0.133
Wilks' Lambda 0.934 1.920 0.133
Hotelling's Trace 0.071 1.920 0.133
Roy's Largest Root 0.071 1.920 0.133
GM10 Pillai's Trace 0.011 0.310 0.818
Wilks' Lambda 0.989 0.310 0.818
Hotelling's Trace 0.011 0.310 0.818
Roy's Largest Root 0.011 0.310 0.818
GM11 Pillai's Trace 0.051 1.460 0.232
Wilks' Lambda 0.949 1.460 0.232
Hotelling's Trace 0.054 1.460 0.232
Roy's Largest Root 0.054 1.460 0.232
GM12 Pillai's Trace 0.825 127.222 0.000
Wilks' Lambda 0.175 127.222 0.000
Hotelling's Trace 4.712 127.222 0.000
Roy's Largest Root 4.712 127.222 0.000

The table presents the significance values of the variables. It can be inferred from the result that GM 2, GM6 and GM12 are statistically significant as the significance level is less than 0.05, while others are insignificant with significance values more than 0.05 in the multivariate regression model. Out of all the statistically significant variables of green marketing, it can be observed that GM12 has the maximum value of Pillai's Trace (0.825), thereby presenting to have a maximum statistically significant impact on the market performances (operational, marketing and economical) as the more its value is close to 1, the more it has a stronger impact on the dependent variables. Thus, out of all the significant variables, GM12 has the maximum impact on market performance. Similarly, GM12 has the smallest value for Wilks' Lambda (0.175) compared with all other statistically significant variables of green marketing. The more the value of Wilks' Lambda is close to 0, the more the variable (GM12) explains the variance in the dependent variables (Market performance). This means that the variable (GM12) contributes more to the model. Thus, out of all the significant variables, GM12 contributes the maximum to the market performance. Further, small F values of these significant factors point towards acceptance of the alternate hypothesis. Thus, it can be stated that green marketing significantly impacts marketing performance (refer to Table 5).

Table 5 Tests of between-Subjects Effects
Source Mean Square F Sig.
GM2 Operational Performance 0.416 1.037 0.311
Marketing Performance 6.344 98.540 0.000
Economic Performance 3.614 14.524 0.000
GM3 Operational Performance 0.227 0.566 0.454
Marketing Performance 0.001 0.012 0.914
Economic Performance 1.161 4.668 0.034
GM4 Operational Performance 0.055 0.138 0.711
Marketing Performance 0.028 0.438 0.510
Economic Performance 0.171 0.688 0.409
GM6 Operational Performance 0.484 1.207 0.275
Marketing Performance 0.732 11.373 0.001
Economic Performance 0.001 0.003 0.957
GM9 Operational Performance 0.857 2.137 0.148
Marketing Performance 0.342 5.317 0.024
Economic Performance 0.015 0.060 0.808
GM10 Operational Performance 0.003 0.008 0.930
Marketing Performance 0.011 0.174 0.678
Economic Performance 0.182 0.731 0.395
GM11 Operational Performance 1.319 3.288 0.073
Marketing Performance 0.168 2.605 0.110
Economic Performance 0.003 0.011 0.917
GM12 Operational Performance 55.032 137.161 0.000
Marketing Performance 15.006 233.106 0.000
Economic Performance 29.845 119.954 0.000
Model Operational Performance 108.262 269.831 0.000
Marketing Performance 81.111 1259.985 0.000
Economic Performance 74.214 298.288 0.000
Error Operational Performance 0.401    
Marketing Performance 0.064    
Economic Performance 0.249    
Total Operational Performance      
Marketing Performance      
Economic Performance      

The analysis in the table shows the relations between the dependent and independent variables while discussing the F values, mean square values and significance level. It can be inferred from Table that the Green marketing factor GM2 has a significant impact on marketing performance (p=0.00) and economic performance (p=0.00) but was found to have an insignificant impact on operational performance (p=0.311).

GM3 was found to have a significant impact only on economic performance and to significant impact on marketing (p>0.05) and operational performance (p>0.05). Green marketing factors GM4, GM10 and GM11, were found to have no significant impact on any performance (p>0.05). Further, GM 12 was found to have a significant impact on operational performance (p=0.00) and economic performance (p=0.00), while GM6, GM9 and GM12 were found to have a significant impact on marketing performance (p<0.05). Finally, the complete model has a statistically significant impact on all three performances (p=0.00). Thus, it can be stated that green marketing significantly impacts marketing performance. Moreover, it can be inferred that green marketing is irresponsible for 76.3 percent of changes in operational performance, 79 percent of changes in marketing performance and 76 percent of the change in economic performance (refer to Table 5).


The present research has focused on assessing the impact of green marketing on market performance in rural India. The research found a weak relationship between green marketing and market performance factors. It was further found that green marketing significantly impacts marketing performance in rural India, but only three factors of green marketing (GM 2, GM6 and GM12) were significant in the regression model. Thus, it can be stated that only ecological and clean materials in packaging, the use of recycled or reusable materials in our products, and the use of eco-labels or environmental certification are essential for impacting the market performance in rural India. The present research has implications for the stakeholders. The current research's green marketing strategies that impact marketing performance can act as a bluebook for stakeholders. Based on the findings of the study, it is recommended that manufacturers should use ecological and clean materials in the packaging of organic fertilisers to attract more rural customers. Further, green certifications from different organisations (Government/non-government) will facilitate the marketers in marketing the product as a green product, enhancing the marketing performance.

The present research has a limitation owing to the limited resources for collecting data from the heterogeneous population across rural India. The sample size used in the present research could have been broader to represent pan India. Further, there is heterogeneity across the rural area demographically, educationally, culturally, income-wise, and living style; therefore, a separate study at the regional level can be conducted as future research. This could help in a policy specific to the state and region. Moreover, the present research can be conducted on different industries or specific products or may be compared to assess any difference in the impact of green marketing on market performance in rural India.


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Received: 28-Oct-2022, Manuscript No. AMSJ-22-12721; Editor assigned: 31-Oct-2022, PreQC No. AMSJ-22-12721(PQ); Reviewed: 17-Nov-2022, QC No. AMSJ-22-12721; Revised: 01-Dec-2022, Manuscript No. AMSJ-22-12721(R); Published: 03-Jan-2023

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