Social Marketing

sm-bookSocial Marketing

Pearson, London, 2014
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Social marketing is receiving unprecedented focus and support from government, the private sector and charities internationally. Social marketing attempts to educate people in the hope that they will make ‘informed’(i.e. healthy) choices regarding diet, lifestyle and health related issues. The effective application of social marketing principles can be complex and controversial. Social marketing planning cannot be reduced to a simple set of actions on a checklist; there is no single strategy for success and strategies that have proved successful with one population may not transfer to other populations. This text will explore the complexities involved in researching, planning and implementing effective social marketing programmes, using illustrative cases from both successful and unsuccessful real-world programmes.

The authors provide a critical analysis of the origins of social marketing as a concept and of the claims made by its supporters and detractors in order to highlight what social marketing can and cannot achieve.  This is followed by a review of strategic issues that must be considered in developing social marketing programmes, including persuasion resistance, message relevance and message framing.

Key themes included in the text are the impact of cultural factors on health-related behaviours, ethical issues and attitudes as a key factor underlying health-related behaviours. The authors introduce concepts, theories and strategies that will aid the development, testing and implementation of social marketing interventions.

The book is suitable for both undergraduate and postgraduate students of business and marketing and those studying modules in social marketing.

Table of Contents

Part 1: The principles of social marketing

1.    What is social marketing?
Evolution and application of social marketing
What social marketing is not
Current social marketing focus
Unintended consequences
Justification of government-sponsored social marketing interventions


2.    The core principles of social marketing
The core principles
Traditionalists versus convergents: the debate about commercial marketing technologies
The example of exchange: debating the use of commercial marketing theory
The example of the 4Ps: debating the use of the commercial marketing tools
Why social marketing is different
Other commercial marketing tools


3.    The social marketing intervention planning process
Existing intervention planning frameworks
Scoping the problem
Situation analysis
SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) analysis
Evaluation planning
Developing the intervention


4.    Upstream, policy and partnerships
Upstream factors
Features of successful partnerships
Partnership challenges
Public–private partnerships (PPPs)
The challenge of health-related partnerships with the alcohol industry


5.  Ethical issues in social marketing
Ethics defined
Ethical dilemmas in social marketing
Ethical frameworks
Ethical issues in targeting
Fear appeals
Role of culture in establishing ethical standards
Code of ethics

Part 2: Understanding the citizen

6.   Understanding the consumer: the role of theory
What is theory?
Is theory really useful in practice?
The role of theory
The limitations of theory
Theories of behaviour change

7.  Conducting research in social marketing
Overview of research
Research ethics
Qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods techniques
Quantitative techniques
Qualitative techniques
Qualitative data analysis


8. Segmentation
Segmentation defined
Segmentation methods
Effective segments – characteristics
Commercial segmentation packages


9.  Social forces and population level effects
Social forces
Social norm campaigns
Group types
Group effects


Part 3: Designing effective social marketing solutions

10.  Designing social marketing interventions: products, services, locations, channels
Designing campaigns
Developing products for social marketing campaigns
Brand development for social marketing
Brand attributes
Brand dimensions
Branding as a social/identity factor
Place and distribution channel


11.  Message framing
Introduction: types of framing
Positive framing
Negative framing
Fear appeals
Rational versus emotional appeals
Cross-cultural issues in message framing
Personal relevance/tailored interventions
Reactance effects


12.  Creativity in social marketing
Creative strategy formation
Presentation of strategy
Creativity for print: leaflets, posters, newspapers, magazines, etc
Creativity for television, radio and cinema
Creativity for new/electronic media


13.  Media in social marketing

Basic media planning principles
How much is enough?
Advertising as a strongly persuasive force
Advertising as a weaker, primarily repurchase reminder, force
So how much should we spend?
Media choices
Media context
Planning for new media
Social media


14.  Measurement and evaluation of social marketing programmes

Why evaluate?
What to evaluate
When to evaluate
Intervention outcomes – effects and effectiveness
How to evaluate – techniques for different phases, components and media
Social advertising and communication
Monitoring ‘noise’/upstream factors
Special circumstances
Evaluating partnerships


Glossary of terms