Tips and Resources for Social Marketing

In consideration of models and tools for addressing behavior change, perhaps one of the most important elements is how we communicate health behaviors to our audience.

It is important to note that 54% of Americans read below the equivalent of a sixth-grade level and more than half (51.7%) of Americans do not have a college degree. 49 million Americans are functionally illiterate. Only about 15% of Americans can read at the collegiate level. Thus it is important to keep our communications simple and at a level appropriate for most adults.

I will add more to this post later, but for now, here are some resources for social marketing:

Community Tool Box Links to an external site. This website provides excellent resources on promoting participation and social marketing. Topic sections include step-by-step instruction, examples, checklists, and related resources.

·  American Marketing Association Links to an external site.The American Marketing Association is one of the largest professional associations for marketers. This website provides best practices related to marketing strategies for a low-cost annual fee, including marketing tools and templates, and marketing services directories.

·  Fostering Sustainable Behavior and Community-Based Social Marketing This website highlights how social marketing is used in the areas of energy, water, transportation, and the environment. On this website, there are articles, case studies, discussion forums, and other resources.

·  International Social Marketing Association Links to an external site. The International Social Marketing Association’s mission is to “advance social marketing practice, research, and teaching through collaborative networks of professionals, supporters and enthusiasts.” On the Website you will find jobs, events, networking opportunities, webinars, social marketing news, and other resources. Some content is available for members only.

·  Tools of Change Links to an external site. This Website is based on social marketing work in Canada. Here you will find case studies, planning guides, and list of webinars and workshops available through Tools of Change.

·  National Social Marketing Centre (NSMC)Links to an external site.   The NSMC is a center for excellence in behavior change and social marketing located in the United Kingdom. This Website provides tools and resources for designing social marketing programs as well as case studies from around the world.

Asset-Based Community Development (ABCD) Institute, Northwestern University The ABCD, a part of the Center for Civic Engagement, was founded by Jody Kretzmann and John L. McKnight. The Website provides a variety of information on community building including training videos and podcasts, a tool kit with templates for community mapping, and an overview of the research projects in which its staff is involved.

The Community Tool Box (CTB), University of Kansas The CTB provides practical information to support work in promoting community health and development. This Website is maintained by the Work Group on Health Promotion and Community Development at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, Kansas, and offers a list of chapters that provide step-by-step guidance for community building skills. Within each chapter are a number of sections that include background information, examples, tools and checklists, and PowerPoint® slides. It also includes databases of best practices

Health Education Resource Exchange (H.E.R.E.), Washington State Department of Health.  H.E.R.E. is a website of the Washington State Department of Health designed as an online clearinghouse of public health and health promotion materials, events, resources, and news. It is designed to assist individuals who perform population-based health promotion activities in a variety of settings. It includes a number of resources on community engagement and mobilization.