The effectiveness of environmental claims for services advertising

Ricky Y.K. Chan (Department of Management and Marketing, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Kowloon, Hong Kong)
T.K.P. Leung (Department of Management and Marketing, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Kowloon, Hong Kong)
Y.H. Wong (Department of Management and Marketing, Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hung Hom, Kowloon, Hong Kong)

Journal of Services Marketing

ISSN: 0887-6045

Publication date: 1 June 2006



The purpose of this study is to explore how different types of environmental claims may affect the communication effectiveness of environmental advertising. Two two moderating variables include the perceived eco‐friendly image of the originating country and consumer involvement.


The examination involves the analysis of the responses of 1,200 subjects in Shanghai, China, to mock advertisements containing environmental claims using a 2 x 3 factorial design.


Environmental claims enhance the communication effectiveness of advertisements for both high‐ and low‐involvement services. For high‐involvement services, substantive environmental claims generate more favorable attitudinal responses than do associative environmental claims.

Research limitations/implications

This research focused on a single Chinese city and on two service categories with contrasting degrees of involvement. While such a confinement can enhance the internal validity of the findings, their external validity has yet to be established.

Practical implications

These findings suggest that marketers should adopt a situational perspective by taking into account environmental claim type, country disposition, the degree of environmental consciousness of their target consumers, and service type when designing their environmental advertising campaigns.


Although a number of previous studies have focused on the application of environmental claims to advertise products, similar investigation into how these claims may help advertise services is virtually non‐existent. In this respect, the present study can be viewed as the first empirical work devoted to closing this research gap.



Chan, R., Leung, T. and Wong, Y. (2006), "The effectiveness of environmental claims for services advertising", Journal of Services Marketing, Vol. 20 No. 4, pp. 233-250.

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Copyright © 2006, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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