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The Principles of Social Marketing

Programs are built by social marketers together with people (and not for people). Social marketers are guided by a set of principles or marketing tools and techniques. Research has taught us that behaviour change is more likely when more of the social marketing benchmarks are used.
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© Griffith University

Programs are built by social marketers together with people (and not for people). Social marketers are guided by a set of principles or marketing tools and techniques.

Research has taught us that behaviour change is more likely when more of the social marketing benchmarks are used.

The 8 Principles of Social Marketing

Detailed explanation of social marketing’s principles are provided by the UK National Social Marketing Centre – Social Marketing Benchmark Criteria.

Social marketing benchmarks explain the 8 things that social marketers need to do. The eight benchmark principles defined by the UK’s National Social Marketing Centre that guide programs aimed at the people who are at the heart of problems (the individual people who need to change) are:

  1. Stakeholder orientation
  2. Segmentation
  3. Theory use
  4. Insight
  5. Competition
  6. Exchange
  7. Marketing mix
  8. Behaviour change

Here we will focus on these in more detail to understand more about how these principles are applied by social marketers.

Stakeholder Orientation

The co-creation phase of social marketing ensures that we have stakeholder orientation because programs are designed with people and not for them, right from the start. To design a program that delivers change it is important to include the people at the heart of the problem and all of the stakeholders who have a vested interest.

Social Marketing and Budgets

Online companies, such as Amazon, can use data to meet the preferences of individual people. However, social marketers, who deliver programs in communities, are often faced with limited budgets and a lack of infrastructure to support one to one communication appeals.

Segmentation

Given we know that everyone is different, social marketers draw on segmentation, wherever possible, to guide program planning.

Watch this video, presented by Jeff Jordan Director Rescue Social Change, to learn more about how Jeff and his team identify segments

This is an additional video, hosted on YouTube.

The segmentation principle of social marketing allows groups who are different from each other to be identified ensuring we can plan for more types of people. By thinking about different groups the needs and wants of more people in the community can be included in program planning.

Your task

Go to the UK National Social Marketing Centres – Social Marketing Benchmark Guide. Can you find an example of segmentation in a behaviour change campaign?

© Griffith University
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