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Success Stories in Social Marketing

Using social marketing to increase recruitment of pregnant smokers to smoking cessation service
Although long established that smoking in pregnancy is harmful, many women still find it difficult to quit for pregnancy, and many health professionals find it frustrating that they cannot help more. So pioneering work in the UK has examined the barriers to cessation in an innovative way (using role play with stakeholders) and produced important improvements in the interest shown in smoking cessation by both pregnant smokers and health professionals. The intervention followed years of research and development. Read More

Using social marketing to develop an intervention to screen an at-risk population for oral cancer
Following on from earlier health promotion interventions in relation to oral cancer health promotion, this project aimed to use specific awareness-raising techniques in a defined catchment population to engage and motivate those at risk from oral cancer to seek early screening and diagnosis or elimination from follow-up in a uniquely designed screening/ referral intervention based on social marketing techniques. The intervention followed years of research and development. Information derived focus groups provided insights into the issues facing those at risk from oral cancer in a predominantly Caucasian population in an urban area in England. Read More
Reducing waiting for clinical service
In the early 2000s, waiting lists for a clinical service were large and threatening to become worse. A fundamental change in the service provider circumstances opened an opportunity to change the service and improve access to the specialty. Using social marketing insights, realignment of the service was undertaken, curing the original problems and leading to a current service that is better than neighbouring arrangements.
Working to increase coverage of water fluoridation
Leading strategic development of new water fluoridation schemes from 1987, undertaking three months successful consultation with the public, local authorities and community health councils, negotiating with local water companies and achieving unprecedented progress using sophisticated social marketing techniques. A failure to progress at the time was investigated using social marketing principles, and “up-stream” remedies were identified; a subsequent change in primary legislation in the UK Parliament has resolved many of the structural and procedural issues impeding further implementation of new water fluoridation schemes, and social marketing principles and practice contributed to the success of this intervention.
Segmenting the market
Supermarkets go to great lengths to understand us, predict our shopping behaviours, and, if they can, influence how we shop. To do this successfully, they use many forms of research, especially techniques that let them describe how we view the world, and what our attitudes and values are.

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