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Presentation Speech: Injury Prevention

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Introduction

Communication is changing rapidly as time goes by. Social marketing is a communication method which employs the principles of marketing with the intention of manipulating the acceptableness of social ideas.   This may include the entrance of new product such as Anti-Retroviral drugs, the adjustment of existing ones,   and the endorsement of structural change in the current organizations.  It has its roots in the 1970s when a group of individuals realized that the same marketing principles applied to the marketing of commercial products and services could be used to promote ideas, behavior and attitude.  The main objective of social marketing is to influence social behavior amongst individuals of the society without benefiting the marketer but the target audience and the society at large (Lefebvre, 2011). This paper looks at the tips for success in the development of a social marketing campaign.

Tips for success in developing a social marketing campaign

Take advantage of prior and existing successful campaigns

Social marketing campaign preparation should kick of with a thorough search of other similar projects in the public sector and agencies worldwide.  This tip has tremendous advantages which include learning the strengths and weaknesses of the existing ideas, successes and failures and so on. Also information on the preparation of the campaign, cost-effective methods that can be used and the establishment of creative means that can be used can be found through this method.   The internet should be a good starting point as it contains millions of information resources which might be of relevance to the campaign (Changing behaviour: A public policy perspective, 2007).

The use of seatbelts has been promoted by the department of transport since 1976. Three strikes is the latest social marketing campaign which has restructured the issue exposing that seatbelts should be worn always even when driving at slow speeds or driving in familiar roads. They have achieved to change the behavior of the people by exposing the risks they put themselves in by not wearing a seatbelt (Transport, 2011).

Start with target audiences most ready for action

Social marketers should target audience that is ready to change. The stage of change model should be employed in this area which encompasses four sub- stages which are the pre-contemplation whereby people don’t have any intentions of changing.  Contemplation stages whereby individuals give change a thought. Preparation stage is after accepting change, the completion of groundwork to effect change. Maintenance is whereby individuals have changed their behavior but need constant reminders to remind themselves (Changing behaviour: A public policy perspective, 2007).

THINK! Campaign was launched in 2008 and a research was conducted to create a target audience for the campaign. It was established that individuals driving from work are at risk due to fatigue.  This audience is more ready for change as more often than not they are open-minded and would not like to put their lives at risk. They would love to see the pay day. Radio advertising was selected as a means of passing information to this people because they listen to it while driving (THINK!, 2011).

Support & promote single, doable behaviors with significant potential impact

No matter how complex the issue requires multiple change of behavior, it is best to demonstrate them one at a time. Clarity, simplicity, conciseness and action geared messages will support more people. For instance, in the Think seatbelt campaign, the message is simple and clear. It is outlined as think always wear a seatbelt (Transport, 2011). On the Think Fatigue campaign a similar message is relayed in terms of simplicity, clarity, action oriented and so on. The message is simply placed tiredness kills. Make time for a break (THINK!, 2011).

Identify and remove barriers to behavior change

This places emphasis on changing the environment as opposed to the individual. This is through the establishment of the underlying factors that make individuals behave in a certain way and resist behavior change.  This is paramount to capturing a wider audience.  Focus groups can be used to establish why people behave in a certain way (Changing behaviour: A public policy perspective, 2007).  For instance, after conducting research, it was established that individuals who drive for work most likely behave in a risky way. This is mostly related to exhaustion after a long day at work and stress due to a lot of thinking (THINK!, 2011).  

Bring real benefits into the present

This basically entails laying emphasis on the benefits of the behavior change to the target audience.  This is a challenge especially in an environmental setting whereby gains are long term and broad in some manner. When the benefits are more, individuals are more likely to adapt the new behavior without much effort from the social marketer (Changing behaviour: A public policy perspective, 2007).  For example in the Think Seatbelt television advertisement, the benefit it brings out is that of saving your own life. No one wants to die. The advertisement shows an unbelted drivers vehicle hitting another car leading to the drivers body hitting the steering wheel and the windscreen. This has fatal results as the internal organs of the driver smash, leaving him for the dead (Transport, 2011).

Highlight costs of competing behaviors

This involves showing the audience the cost they would have to incur incase they cling to their old behavior. These are usually the losses to be incurred by the individuals.  For instance, in the Think Fatigue campaign, the message is very clear. It clearly states that tiredness kills. This shows that the individual who decides to drive when tired will have a very heavy price to pay, that of their life. (THINK! Fatigue, 2011)

Conclusion

In the current society, there are many behaviors adapted by the human species that need change. This is because of the negative effects these behaviors pose to both the individual, the environment and also to those surrounding them. This includes behavior like smoking, reckless driving and so on. Social marketing comes in between to inform the people on the dangers they expose themselves in engaging in this behaviors. Most have transformed as a result of the information.  

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